soldier sonnets

George Stavros: On "Gay Chaps at the Bar"

Q. Let me ask you about some of your poems that are in specific forms, however—sonnets . . . .

A. I like to refer to that series of soldier sonnets. 

Q. "Gay Chaps at the Bar." 

A. A sonnet series in off-rhyme, because I felt it was an off-rhyme situation—I did think of that. I first wrote the one sonnet, without thinking of extensions. I wrote it because of a letter I got from a soldier who included that title in what he was telling me; and then I said, there are other things to say about what's going on at the front and all, and I'll write more poems, some of them based on the stuff of letters that I was getting from several soldiers, and I felt it would be good to have them all in the same form, because it would serve my purposes throughout.

from "An Interview with Gwendolyn Brooks" in Contemporary Literature 11:1 (Winter 1970).