John Wilmot’s “The Disabled Debauchee” adheres to a sonnet format. The poem, written and separated into four line stanzas called quatrains, rhymes in strophe throughout mostly every other line which categorizes the poem as a heroic stanza format. This is similar to most simple nursery rhymes that readers are used to reading at a younger age before they read complex literary poetry (ie mother goose). Therefore, the simplistic format is familiar to the eye of the reader and enhances the comprehension of the poem. The syntax of the poem is structured into a series of dependent clauses forming incomplete thoughts such as “And absent yet enjoys the bloody day”, and is common throughout the work. More than likely, Wilmot portrays these incomplete clauses in order to indicate the central theme of the speakers’ ultimately unfulfilling life of pleasure.
Comparisons are necessary in this poem in order to format a sense of good and bad coinciding together. To make these comparisons, Wilmot’s fills his poems with similes such as “As some brave admiral, in former war”, and “As from black clouds when lightning breaks away”. These comparisons add a sense of non-linearity and complexity to the poem. Because of these metaphors, the reader can eventually assess the presence of the duality of good and evil that this poem’s world continues to exaggerate.
The rhythmic flow of the poem follows the sonnet in form as well as rhythm. It is organized and presented in iambic pentameter, where “iambic” describes the type of feet used while “pentameter” describes the meter of the feet. The “iamb” refers to the poem’s pattern of one short unstressed syllable followed by a longer stressed syllable, while “pentameter” refers to the amount of syllables per foot of the poem which contains five syllables, such as in: “So when | my days | of im-|...