Three stanzas -- two quatrains and a sestet. A quatrain is a stanza of
four lines; a sestet is a stanza of six lines. Traditionally the first quatrain introduces
the subject, the second complicates the subject, and the sestet resolves or alters the
subject in some way.
A rhyme scheme of abba abba in the quatrains, and cdc dcd
with some variations in the sestet. Traditionally the poet seeks to make the rhymes in the
seset as different as possible from the two quatrains. (cf. Petrarch's Sonnet # 61)
Conceit: an elaborate and surprising comparison between
two apparently dissimilar things.
Metaphor/ Simile: a comparison of two unlike objects or an
idea and an object. A simile makes the comparison in a less direct manner, using
"like" or "as." E.g. "The wind is a hammer upon the eyelids of
this coastland." "The wind is like a hammer . . ."
Blason: a poem that proceeds detail by detail in either
praise or blame of an individual, often an extended set of metaphors and/or similes that
build on descriptions of the body: "I conjure thee by Rosaline's bright eyes,/ By her
high forehead and her scarlet lip,/By her fine foot, straight leg, and quivering
Personification: an attribution of human qualities to an
idea, an inanimate object, or an animal. E.g. "Love caught me naked to his shaft . .
." "Whereon the Sun in pity veiled his glare."