Monosyllabic

    LET me be monosyllabic to-day, O Lord.
    Yesterday I loosed a snarl 'of words on a fool, on a child.
    To-day, let me be monosyllabic . . . . a crony of old men who wash sunlight in their fingers and enjoy slow-pacing clocks.

Carl Sandburg(1878–1967)


Sandburg's Monosyllabic (Cornhuskers. 1918) is a good example of what is called organic rhythm by some experts in that the rhythmic patterns fit well with the theme and form of the poem.

Writers of Sandburg's time frequently experimented with rhythm and it has since then become an important element of poetry. The last line is a petition and you might be interested to know about how Sandburg emplyed irony by using a five syllable word twice in such a short verse making this a little gem!

Sources:

I while back I mentioned Marguerite Wilkinson's 1924 anthology ... :
www.geocities.com/~bblair/010706f.htm

Public domain text taken from The Poets’ Corner:
http://www.theotherpages.org/poems/sandb03.html#15

CST Approved.

Mon`o*syl*lab"ic (?), a. [Cf. F. monosyllabique.]

Being a monosyllable, or composed of monosyllables; as, a monosyllabic word; a monosyllabic language.

-- Mon`o*syl*lab"ic*al*ly (#), adv.

 

© Webster 1913.

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