Tuesday, April 16, 2013

I Say Roundel, You Say Rondelet

Toads! It’s day 16! Whew!

I can’t believe we’ve written ourselves half-way through April without a form poetry prompt. I loved seeing several sevenlings in response to Hedgewitch’s Sunday prompt, yay! But it's time for a true form challenge, people, it's time. I don’t know about you, but if I feel a bit stuck with my writing, I’ll often reach for a strict form, and the words come out. So maybe this will help if anyone’s feeling a bit tapped in mid-month. Ahem.

We’ve studied both of these forms before--waaayyyy back at the beginning of Grace O’Malley’s tremendous form challenges. The French forms and their relations--roundel, roundeau, rondelet, triolet, and more--are wonderful and fun to play with. I’ve chosen ROUNDEL and RONDELET today because they seem the most palatable for quick turn-around during this crazy month.

Here is Grace’s introduction to the ROUNDEL. It is an eleven-line, three stanza poem with a refrain and this rhyme scheme:

R (refrain)


R (refrain)

The roundel features ten-syllable lines, with the refrain consisting of six syllables. The refrain is intended to come from the beginning of the first line.

There’s an example of one of my roundels in Grace’s article, and here are two others of mine, if you’re interested: with my good hand and goodbye to all that.

Here’s the article about the RONDELET, which is a more abbreviated and possibly more manageable form for this week. It’s a seven-line poem with four eight-syllable lines and three, count ‘em THREE, of the lines are a four-syllable refrain. The rhyme scheme looks like this:

A (refrain)

I like the rondelet and have written a bunch of them, if you’re looking for ideas about how to use this form. This one’s my favorite (it appears in my book, Responsive Pleading): 
"mount to the sky" by Marian Kent 

You looked like rain
before the wild hurricane flew.
You looked like rain.
Clamoring down tin eaves, the pain
rollicked like thunder. Meanwhile, you
colored outside the lines. All blue.
You looked like rain. 
Okay! So your challenge for today, my dear Toads, is to pick one, the roundel or the rondelet, and write one! Link up a new, fresh-as-Spring poem, and for those of you playing along, count it as Number Sixteen for April. Can’t wait to read!


Kay L. Davies said...

I'm not going to be first tonight. I made that mistake last night, staying up 'way past bedtime, and submitting the result without proofreading or editing. One might imagine all my years in the newspaper and printing industry would have taught me better. I would have thought so, too, and we'd both have been wrong.
BUT, and it's a big but, I'm glad it's a form prompt, because Marian is so right, sticking to a form is often a good way to make the words come as they should.
Thanks, Marian. See you tomorrow.

Janine Bollée said...

Good morning all,
Thank you Marian, I'm building up to a QUATERN this week, so doing a 7 line , well (4 + 1), rondelet will be a good start. I'll compose on my walk this morning.

hedgewitch said...

Thanks for a good dose of form, Marian. I've written a few roundels in the past, but it's been awhile. At present about to go to bed, but will hopefully hatch something tomorrow.

hedgewitch said...

Forgot to say I love your rondelet example--really excellent.

Jinksy said...

A quickie rondelet it shall be. Thanks, Marian. :)

Jinksy said...

No sooner said than done...

hedgewitch said...

Thanks, Marian--putting my words to form really helped, and made a much stronger piece I think. Now I can sleep! Back later to read.

Marian said...

yay! yinz guys are all serious overachievers. i'm back to work today after a few days off, so who knows what my own mind will bring for this challenge :)

Marian said...

also, i meant to say that i'm back to work so i'll be around a bit later today to read everyone's posts. xoxo

Kerry O'Connor said...

Seems last week was the focus on dialogue and this on form. I'm loving the opportunity to work on some of my favourites.

Margaret said...

Funny. I always approach form with dread, but usually surprise myself when I find I can do it. Thank you.

Susie Clevenger said...

Rhyme, my nemesis...I swallowed the poetic bullet and attempted it. Now I shall read the work of others who can actually write the form. :)

LLM Calling said...

what a lot of fun, I enjoyed that challenge.

Ellecee said...

A new form to me and therefore a good challenge. A Rondelet it will be. Thank you Marian and I enjoyed your Rondelets very much.

Marian said...

good poems so far! i'm glad you are all embracing these forms, they really are fun. i've found with the rondelet, the key is to find a refrain that works... not easy, as when repeated in such a tight poem, i think it is easy to go wrong. you're all bringing your A game so far, though. of course!

TCPC said...

well, i have tried my hands and hope i have got it right...also chose a paintign of Joaquin Sorolla, a prompt I could not respond to for Sunday's challenge...will catch up with the others tomorrow. Off for the night now! :)

Grandmother Mary said...

The timing of this prompt is exquisite but very important for me.

Gina Gao said...

The form of how to create a poem has always confused me. Thanks for this post!


Anonymous said...

In light of all that has happened, I am surprised I'm posting at all, let alone to a form.
When you see it,
you'll count syllables and say,
Amy don't know shit
from an actual "Rondelet."
That may be so,
but I've spent half the day in bed
It's but to show
there's still grey matter in my head.

Peace, Amy

Hannah said...

Hello!!! Late to the show, I am but I'll be around. :) Thank you, Marian and I love your example here of the rondelet! :)

Gail said...


Fireblossom said...

I don't have enough firing brain cells left atm to write form. I sowwy, Marian!

Maude Lynn said...

You nearly killed me with this one, Marian!

Other Mary said...

Mine needs some work, maybe major work, but I'm running out of Day #16! I'll be around to read and comment tomorrow! Thanks Marian!

Marian said...

Toads are awesome! I'll catch up on reading your wonderfulness in a little while... xo