is a dramatic turn in a poem. It is the moment at which the perspective of a poem shifts, either summarizing the poem or startling the reader into a new way of perceiving what has come before.
The volta is often accompanied by a change in rhyme scheme.
In Elizabethan Sonnets
, the volta generally happens at the very end of the poem. After three ABAB quatrains, the sonnet ends with a heroic couplet
, and the volta generally occurs at the couplet.
In Italian Sonnets
, the volta generally happens at line 9. The first eight lines make up the octave
, and the last six lines make up the sestet
, and the perspective changes there.
Although this is a general
rule for Italian Sonnets, it is not adhered to strictly; some Italian Sonnets have the volta much later.Copyright 2010 Douglas. All rights reserved. FifteenMinutesOfFiction.com has been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work. For permission to reprint this item, please contact the author.
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