Sestina to Prof. Dickey (1991)
Alexander "Sasha" Volokh

(on handing in my paper -- on whether Hal is "educated"
over the course of 1 Henry IV -- to my
UCLA Shakespeare professor, Steve Dickey)

O teacher of my class, Professor Dickey,
I give to you this beautiful sestina
Attached to the beginning of my paper
Upon the play of Shakespeare's of King Henry
(And if or not Hal gets an education),
On which I, writing, spent my weary evenings.

Ah, often did I stay awake, the evenings,
For your enjoyment, Mr. Stephen Dickey.
This class is part of college education,
And that's why I am writing this sestina.
My essay deals with people like King Henry,
And Hal and Falstaff, who are in my paper.

I hope that you enjoy my humble paper
And read it for your pleasure in the evenings.
I hope you like my insights on King Henry
And give to me an A, Professor Dickey.
But first, you should peruse this short sestina,
An introduction to Hal's education.

The question whether Hal gets education
Is what I try to answer in my paper,
As you can tell from reading this sestina.
Ah, now I work till late into the evenings,
On this sestina for Professor Dickey.
I stray, now, from the exploits of King Henry.

Some people think that Hal, the son of Henry,
Had never really got an education.
And that's what you were thinking, Mr. Dickey,
When you approved this topic for my paper.
How often did I agonize, the evenings,
Before I set to work upon my paper!

But if you look askance on this sestina,
And mark me down for thoughts about King Henry,
Then will I rue the mornings and the evenings;
This will disrupt my college education.
"Ah, that I ever wrote this cursed paper!"
This will I say, you know, Professor Dickey.

Steve Dickey, now you've looked at my sestina.
Now read my paper, which deals with King Henry
And education, which I wrote in evenings.

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