Lesson 6 – Exercises & Assignment

Exercise 1:  Create your own paragraph that includes at least five examples of internal rhyme.  (My ideas were beginning to dry up.  I decided what a great theme for a poem.)

Writer’s Block

Ideas have left me and run away.

Pesky poetic premises gone to play

With some other prophetic writer.

I could chase these endless meters.

Why keep pace…Sigh…

I’ve got nothing to say.

Exercise 2:  Write five lines, trying your own hand at anaphora.  A brief explanation of Anaphora -courtesy of www.poets.org

The term “anaphora” comes from the Greek for “a carrying up or back,” and refers to a type of parallelism created when successive phrases or lines begin with the same words, often resembling a litany. The repetition can be as simple as a single word or as long as an entire phrase. At the beginning of lines of poetry, not to be confused with a refrain- 

(I took the last word of each line and added it to the next line.  I combined the chain verse idea with anaphora.  I had to modify the last line to create more clarity.)

Idyl Spring

Worship idyl spring – abundant desire.

Worship desire left upon lone summit.

Worship desire, summit made to harbor.

(Lover caught within my deadly desire.)

Worship severs lover; bitter winter remains.

Idyl Spring

1.      Wor/ship i/dyl spring – a/bun/dant de/sire.

2.      Wor/ship de/sire left up/on lone sum/mit.

3.      Wor/ship de/sire, sum/mit made to har/bor.

4.      (Lov/er caught with/in my dead/ly de/sire.)

5.      Wor/ship sev/ers lov/er; bit/ter win/ter re/mains.

Exercise 3:  Using the word smell, I want you to create your own example of repetend. See how you can weave the word throughout your short paragraph. Repetend: a word, phrase, line or longer element that is repeated, sometimes with variation, at irregular intervals in a poem.

Long Summer Days

Shorn grass in military rows unleashes a smell

Of rigid control.  A smell, razor sharp…

Yes, sinister earth…

Blades tear away the haunted memories.

(Is there good when all you recall, only bad?)

Smell, cease your tickling trigger games!

Summer’s smell should be gaiety and family and…

But never for me…Moan!

Why, smell?  Why torture me so?

Specters wraiths, beaten robes, smell of tearful sweat

And plaintive calls for help.

When will summer find her blissful end?

Exercise 4:  The best way to meet the challenge is to write your own villanelle is to remember the rhyme scheme and repetition.  Carefully choose the lines that you will have to repeat. Villanelle definition:  is a nineteen-line poetic form consisting of five tercets followed by a quatrain.  There are two refrains and two repeating rhymes, with the first and third line of the first tercet repeated alternately until the last stanza, which includes both repeated lines.

S’mother Love

Beyond my mother’s comfort lurks the fear

Of night.  The beasts will strike, Oh little one.

Do not abandon me, always stay here.

Attentive tutor increased over years.

A world of danger, dark and scary, was spun.

Beyond my mother’s comfort lurks the fear

And loathing.  Sticky webs of spider’s sphere

Ensnare.  “Can beauty lie with love to son?”

Do not abandon me, always stay here.

The time to wander grows.  Relief appears,

A supple fruit to taste, delicious rum.

Beyond my mother’s comfort lurks the fear

Of censure.  Secret exposed, wrath severe.

A guise of night, escape design begun.

Do not abandon me, always stay here.

Discovered lovers push against the tears,

Despairing sorrow’s pain.  Her pleas out-run.

Beyond my mother’s comfort lurks the fear.

Do not abandon me, always stay here…

S’mother Love

1.      Be/yond my moth/er’s com/fort lurks the fear  a

2.      Of night.  The beasts will strike, Oh lit/tle one.  b

3.      Do not a/ban/don me, al/ways stay here.  a

4.      At/ten/tive tu/tor in/creased o/ver years.  a

5.      A world of dan/ger, dark and scary, was spun.  b

6.      Be/yond my moth/er’s com/fort lurks the fear  a

7.      And loath/ing.  Stick/y webs of spi/der’s sphere  a

8.      En/snare.  “Can beau/ty lie with love to son?”  b

9.      Do not a/ban/don me, al/ways stay here.  a

10.  The time to wan/der grows.  Re/lief ap/pears,  a

11.  A sup/ple fruit to taste, de/li/cious rum.  b

12.  Be/yond my moth/er’s com/fort lurks the fear  a

13.  Of cen/sure.  Se/cret ex/posed, wrath se/vere.  a

14.  A guise of night, es/cape de/sign be/gun. b

15.  Do not a/ban/don me, al/ways stay here.  a

16.  Dis/cov/ered lov/ers push a/gainst the tears,  a

17.  Des/pair/ing sor/row’s pain.  Her pleas out-run.  b

18.  Be/yond my moth/er’s com/fort lurks the fear.  a

19.  Do not a/ban/don me, al/ways stay here…  a


Assignment:  Write a Sestina.  Remember that the sestina is written in six stanzas of six lines each, and that it closes with a tercet, also referred to as the remaining three lines.  You have to decide on your own six words that will be repeated throughout your entire sestina according to a set pattern.  (I created a visual poem as a way to continue the overall theme.)


Egyptian Dig

“Pleased to meet you, Professor of History

And Antiquities.”  Huntress greets the Hunter.

Pyramids nestled in shifting sands, trajectories of past.

An eternal, Egyptian backdrop, wonder reminding the present

Deeds long dead.  Hunter recalls Huntress, but can’t make progress

Beyond lone photo, little girl lost and buried in youth, due to his own construct.

Obsolete marriage cradled into the breathing construct

Before him.  Ancient land of memories, a personal history

Lay exposed under yellow sky’s heat ribbons.  Dig will progress.

“You and I are long ago, left intact to stay,” looking away, exclaimed Hunter.

Messy exchange of dust and dirt falls through the mesh.  Huntress holds present.

“I don’t know why I thought answers would be found within the debris from the past.”

A chance to find glory within the confines of the past.

Vanished Pharaoh’s, Kings among men, their might reconstructed

Higher pictures arranged in cryptic order, rose reveals the secret present:

Father and daughter, two strangers, digging deeper into their forgotten history.

“Your mistakes are etched into my own pattern,” pleaded the Huntress to Hunter.

A similar tale of mislaid devotion, elapsed dreams, desperate need to leave and progress

Towards the deserted.  Huntress may progress

Across uneven terrain, towards her hunger of the past

A gaping hole stretches between the Huntress and Hunter.

Hollow excavated slowly.  The years of careful construction –

Hurt piled layers of sediment, years of neglected moments, build historic

Impediments.  Shovels furiously unearth similar deeds, piled into the present.

Exposed and dusted off, the present

Is pieced into familiar semblances.  Progress

Revealed.  Father and daughter share similar history.

Choices intertwined with the need to leave behind a past.

Shattered, the vessels are carefully considered in their construction.

The slant of the Pyramid slides all the selfish similarities onto the Hunter.

Covered in his legacy, the Hunter

Is buried in shame.  His only present

To wandering child is a shaky construct

Of abandonment.  Hunter and Huntress progress

Toward each other under the Egyptian sun.  The past

Divulged.  The drifters drop their burdensome bundles of History.

Careless construction of children can progress

Hunters to become the hunted.  The present

is alive with the past, a truly familiar history.