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The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith
Poem: "The Bonecage"
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Comments
clarionj From: clarionj Date: February 10th, 2010 02:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wow, what a great use of the villanelle! I really felt those chains being thrown.

I tried a villanelle once. Once. (Don't ask.) The repeating lines are so important and yours work beautifully. Great sound throughout. And after the repetition of the bars of bones line, the last line comes as a striking and welcome variation!
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: February 10th, 2010 05:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

Thank you!

I'm glad this worked for you.

One of these days, I should write an article about how to choose an interlocking/repeating form. See, they all do different things. You write a villanelle when you have two brilliant lines, or when you start with one and you can think of another to go with it. Villanelles are like playing cat's cradle between those two lines. If you've only got one brilliant line, then you don't have a villanelle. You put that into a quatern or somesuch.

Two brilliant lines and a brief topic = triolet. Villanelles also call for a bigger or deeper topic, because you have a bunch of verses to fill.
clarionj From: clarionj Date: February 11th, 2010 01:05 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Thank you!

Thank you! I'm thinking you should write articles on choosing poetic form as well. I've a few books on forms, and some I found very helpful, but what you've said here about the villanelle has helped more than all I've read before. The idea of really having two great lines (rather than simply repeating a first, or a second), and playing cat's cradle between ... somehow that focused it for me. And yes, the idea of a bigger, deeper topic.

Seriously, thank you. I really want to try the form again, and I think I'll have a better approach this time around. And I think I need to wait until two great lines come to life in my head.
natf From: natf Date: September 15th, 2010 01:56 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Thank you!

I would love to read this article! I have written less formal but repeating forms myself - a combination of free verse and repeating rhythm that I did not know there was a form name for. I have not studied poetry forms, merely written a lot of poetry (in years past - much less recently).
16 comments or Leave a comment