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Don PatersonContemporary Critical Essays$
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Natalie Pollard

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748669417

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748669417.001.0001

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Golden Means

Golden Means

Music, Translation and the Patersonnet

(p.34) 2 Golden Means
Don Paterson

Hugh Haughton

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter explores Paterson's derivations from and implementations of fourteen-line form, in the light of his quasi-mathematical explanations for its ubiquity. Paterson has paid special attention to the ‘golden ratio’ derived from the Fibonacci sequence, and his association of this with the sonnet has undergone many derivations through his career. It examines Paterson's claim that we ‘arrived at the sonnet as we arrived at the wheel, out of evolutionary necessity’. It considers his craving for flexible symmetries and disrupted sonnet ratios, with particular reference to music and poetry, literary form and translations or variations.

Keywords:   Don Paterson, British poetry, British poets, poetic form, sonnets, Fibonacci sequence, fourteen-line form

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