If I have a poem, that is a sonnet, with an octave and a sestet - can you then say that this gap between them is a graphological deviation?

1 Answer 1


The use of octaves and sextets refers to rhyme scheme and poetic metre :

  • In poetry, metre (meter in American spelling) is the basic rhythmic structure of a verse or lines in verse. Many traditional verse forms prescribe a specific verse metre, or a certain set of metres alternating in a particular order. (Wikipedia)

while Graphological Deviation:

  • is the deviation in which poets disregard the rules of writing. They write the words in such a way without any boundaries in lines, space, or rhymes. Sutardji’s ‘Tragedi Winka dan Sihka’ and J.E. Tatengkeng’s ‘Kuncup’ are good example for this.


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  • Then can you please explain this article "Owen`s poem Anthem for Doomed Youth is also graphologically deviant. There is a gap between the octave and sestet of the sonnet. This graphological deviation foregrounds two different discourses used by the poet; army discourse in the octave, church discourse in the sestet." in novitasroyal.org/Vol_4_2/timucin.pdf
    – lomlfoml
    Apr 14, 2015 at 9:34
  • I think that referring to octaves and sextets , graphological deviation should be written using inverted commas.
    – user66974
    Apr 14, 2015 at 10:25
  • @lomlfoml If you look at the poem - visually look at it - you can directly see where the meter is octave and where it is sestet, without needing to read it at all. There is a group of short lines and a different group of long lines. There is a visual distinction created on the page, which is of course mirrored by the meter when you read the poem. So if you know the "discourse of war" is written in an octave meter and the "discourse of church" in sestet, you can see which discourse is being employed simply by he length of the line, without having to actually read the line or understand it.
    – Dan Bron
    Apr 14, 2015 at 11:38
  • @DanBron But that cannot be possible - you cannot know the war discourse is explored in the octave, for example, without the foresight that the longest line is the one used for the war discourse. OR is this foresight part of the graphological deviation, or am I missing a crucial element here?
    – lomlfoml
    Apr 14, 2015 at 14:42
  • @Iomlfoml No, given the information, provided by Timuçin, that the work is divided into two different discourses mapping to two different meters, then, you can detect, visually, which is which. Absent that information, in advance, all you can say is that there is a graphological deviation (separating the work into two broad parts), but not what it signifies.
    – Dan Bron
    Apr 14, 2015 at 14:46

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