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Form Unique to The Study and Writing of Poetry; American Women Poets Discuss


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Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry
Invented Forms

I found a few invented forms which appear to be exclusive to The Study and Writing of Poetry; American Women Poets Discuss Their Craft, 1983. The book is a collection of essays from 50 American women poets, each essay provides insights into a multitude of topics from poetic genres, stanzaic forms, to writing techniques. This book provided some additional insights and background information on several stanzaic forms that I thought I had researched fully. I liked this book, it pays attention to the details.

The Anna was invented in honor of Arkansas, poet and news columnist, Anna Nash Yarbrough by James R. Gray of California. This creator suggests the theme for this metric verse be love. The elements of the Anna are:

  1. a heptastich, a poem in 7 lines.
  2. metric, iambic pattern, L1 dimeter, L2 trimeter, L3 tetrameter, L4 pentameter, L5 tetrameter, L6 trimeter and L7 dimeter.
  3. unrhymed.
    Blush of Love by Judi Van Gorder

    In love with love
    we rushed to share our bodies, 
    our dreams and souls with each other.
    Before our God we pledged our hearts and minds
    to honor til our very last breath.
    No clue how life in time
    can change the blush.

The Burtonelle is a style of writing more than a form. At first glance, I thought this the same as a Cleave or Trigee but this technique produces only one poem, not three in one as those forms do. It was introduced by poet, novelist and educator, Wilma W Burton who takes credit only for labeling the technique and writing a poem a day in this style in the Bicentennial year 1976. Her discipline of writing a poem a day in a bound journal has continued well over 20 years and is an exercise she recommends for all aspiring poets.

The Burtonelle is a poem written in two sections side by side with caesura in the form of a uniform space between the two columns or sides. Punctuation, caps, and meter are at the poet's discretion.

The Cinquo is a half Crapsey Cinquain.  The elements of the Cinquo are:

  1. a pentastich, a poem in 5 lines.
  2. syllabic, 1-2-3-4-1 syllables per line.
  3. unrhymed.

    Favored by jvg


The Ercil is an invented form introduced by James Gray, created in honor of Arkansas poet, Ercil Brown. This seems to me to be an exercise in meter.  The elements of the Ercil are:

  1. a decastich, poem in 10 lines.
  2. metric, iambic pattern, L1 &L5 dimeter, L2,L6,L9 & L10 trimeter, L3 & L7 tetrameter and L4 & L8 pentameter.
  3. rhymed ababcdcdee.

The Fantasy is a visually attractive form because of the fixed pattern of indentation. It was created by Miami poet, Irene Gramling. The tone can range from romantic to a rant.  The elements of the Fantasy are

  1. a poem in 20 lines, made up of a septet, a sixain, and a septet, in that order.
  2. syllabic, all lines are 4 syllables each except L3 of each stanza.
  3. rhymed, scheme abccaba deffed gghhiii.
  4. composed with an indentation in L2-L6 and L9-L12. L2,L6,L9 & L12 indented 2 spaces, L3,L5,L10 & L12 are indented 3 spaces and L4 is indented 4 spaces. L1,L7,L8,L13-L20 are not indented.

The Grayette is an invented verse form created by James R Gray of Commerce, California. The elements of the Grayette are:

  1. a poem in 12 lines.
  2. metric, iambic L1,L6,L7 and L12 are monometer, L2, L5,L8 and L11 are dimeter, L3, L4, L9 and L10 are tetrameter.
  3. rhymed, x a b a x b x c d c x d, - x being unrhymed.
    x x
    x x x a
    x x x x x x x b
    x x x x x x x a
    x x x x
    x b
    x x
    x x x c
    x x x x x x x d
    x x x x x x x c
    x x x x
    x d

The Orvillette is an invented verse form created by Virginia Noble as a tribute to her son, Orville, a disabled World War II paratrooper. The elements of the Orvillette are:

  1. a verse form, written in 4 quatrains, a poem in 16 lines.
  2. metered, iambic tetrameter.
  3. composed with a refrain and a rentrament. L1 is repeated as L1 in each quatrain. The first 3 syllables of L4 are repeated as the first 3 syllables of L4 in each quatrain.
  4. rhymed, Raba Rcbc Rdbd Rebe. L3 of each stanza carries a linking rhyme between stanzas.
    x x x x x x x R
    x x x x x x x a
    x x x x x x x b
    r r r x x x x a

    x x x x x x x R
    x x x x x x x c
    x x x x x x x b
    r r r x x x x c     etc.

The Octo is an invented syllabic verse form introduced by James Neille Northe. The elements of the Octo are:

  1. an octastich, a poem in 8 lines.
  2. syllabic, all lines are 8 syllables each.
  3. rhymed ABCxxCBA, x being unrhymed.
  4. written with L1 repeated as L8, L2 repeated as L7 and L3 repeated as L6.

The Onda Mel is an invented verse form introduced by Renelda Gibson. The elements of the Onda Mel are:

  1. an octastich, a poem in 8 lines made up of 2 quatrains.
  2. syllabic, 8-4-4-8-8-4-4-8 syllables per line.
  3. rhymed abbacddc.

    Politics by Judi Van Gorder

    Politics have never drawn me
    Over my head
    Put me to bed
    Always multiple sides to see
    But now I can't ignore the pull
    Fear and anger rise
    Daily surprise
    So much info, mind is full

The Oriental Octet is an invented verse form that appears to emulate the syllabic pattern of the tanka and haiku. It was created by James R. Gray who requests the theme of the poem be nature. The elements of the Oriental Octet are:

  1. an octastich, a poem in 8 lines.
  2. syllabic, 5-7-5-7-7-5-7-5 syllables per line.
  3. unrhymed.

    The Drummer by Judi Van Gorder                                After the Dishes are Done by Judi Van Gorder

    I can hear the beat
    dropping from the heavy clouds
    fat full orbs of rain
    splashing on the window glass
    Wind chimes in its melody
    and whips the water's fall
    in rhythms only played by God
    I can feel the beat.

The Shadorma is a simple syllabic verse form created by James Neill Northe that is most effective when written using strong words or phrases. The elements of the Shadorma are:

  1. a hexastich, a poem in 6 lines although you certainly could choose to write any number of sixains in this syllabic pattern.
  2. syllabic, 3-5-3-3-7-5 syllables per line.
  3. unrhymed.

    Team Depp

    domestic abuse
    I'd believe
    her not him.
    Not this time, she is crazy.
    Un-cancel Johnny!
                    ~~jvg 5-2-22

The Tango is an invented stanzaic form introduced by Chiquita LoJuana Gonzolas Sills. The elements of the Tango are:

  1. stanzaic, written in any number of quatrains.
  2. syllabic, 9-10-11-12 syllables per line.
  3. rhymed, xaxa xbxb etc. x being unrhymed.

The Tripod is an invented verse form which has been used widely in Arkansas workshops. Created by Frances T. Brinkley who suggests the subject be relationships between men. The elements of the Tripod are:

  1. a pentastich, a poem in 5 lines but name implies the number 3 so it makes sense to me that this form should be expanded using 3 cinquains.
  2. syllabic, 3-6-9-6-3 syllables per line.
  3. unrhymed.

    Brothers by Judi Van Gorder

    Bonded by
    boredom punctuated
    with fear, born in a Humvee rattling
    through some Stone Age village
    called Amrut.

    Weapons aimed
    while scruffy children play
    in rubble from yesterday's air strike.
    Young soldiers in Kevlar
    watch shadows.

    No wheat fields
    or big city subways,
    the only thing like home is the guy
    next to you. Only he
    has your back.

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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