Thursday, March 26, 2009

Seven day poetry exercise

I have just read an interesting article in Writers’ Forum magazine, February 2009 issue. The article by Sarah Williams provides a seven day exercise in writing brief poetry as a means of practising brevity.

The poetic forms Williams discusses include (see the magazine for examples):

Haiku – three lines of 5, 7 and 5 syllables with a seasonal reference and division into a two line unit and one line unit.

Tanka – five line poem with 5-7-5-7-7 syllable counts.

Cinquain – five lines of 2-4-6-8-2 syllables, usually without rhyme.

Acrostic – is based on a single word with the letters of that word forming the first letter of each line.

Triolet - French in origin, a total of eight lines with the first line repeated twice through the poem, the second line repeated repeated once.

Clerihew – targets actual people with four lines; first is their name, 3rd and 4th lines loner than the first two, lines irregular in length.

An example immediately occurred to me:

Captain Ricky Ponting,
loves to go a-tonking,
except for those lonely days
when he tosses his wicket away.

Epigram – 2-4 lines in length, satirical, witty

The challenge: over the course of a week, write new poems every day either in a particular form or trying a different form each day.

I am going to do this by attempting a different form each day. Stay tuned to see the results.

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