Snapshot

This is an invented form created by Mary Boren, aka Meter_Maid on Allpoetry, who hosts a compelling new site called Poets Collective.

It is a poem of 7 lines
It is metrical, requiring several specific metrical feet, to wit:
L1: A pair of spondees
L2-3: Dimetrical dactylic couplet plus a hard beat at the end
L4-5: Anapestic dimeter, not rhyming with each other
L6: Anapestic trimeter, rhyming with L4
L7: Anapest. amphibrach, or iamb, which may, but is not required to rhyme with L5
It is formulaic, requiring a person’s name in either line 2 or 3.
It is themed:
 ” to capture a person’s unguarded moment, breaking stereotypes.”  I’d like to somehow convey that the task is to zoom in on descriptive details that plant a distinct concrete image, preferably an unexpected one.  You could almost say it has a volta at L5, as it catches something a camera would miss.  
It is rhymed with rhyme pattern: xaabzbz, where “z” lines may rhyme or not.

My example

Just Notions  (Snapshot)

Think long, think wrong!
Lawrence R. Eberhart thought
thinking of things he was taught
would most surely reveal
at least one salient fact
he was wrong all along on that deal
looking back.

© Lawrencealot – August 23, 2014
Note: This poem fails to be a Snapshot lacking the apparently candid moment required by the theme.

Try this one:

Neighborly Chat  (Snapshot)

Stop, look, think back.
Shoveling snow from the walk
Jerry MGee stopped to talk
with the girl from next door
he’d forgotten her name,
but remembered her shape from before,
quite a dame.

© Lawrencealot – August 23, 2014

Visual Template

Snapshot

Note: Several options exist for L7.

The Stephens

The Stephens is a stanzaic form that uses alternating rising and falling end syllables and is patterned after The Watcher and named for the English poet verse James Stephens (1882-1950).

The Stephens is:
○ stanzaic, written in any number of sixains. (original poem has 5 sixains)
○ accentual, dimeter.
○ rhymed, ababxb cdcdxd etc. x being unrhymed.
○ composed with feminine endings in the odd numbered lines L1, L3 and L5 and masculine rhyme in the even numbered lines L2, L4, L6.

The Watcher by James Stephens

A rose for a young head,
A ring for a bride,
Joy for the homestead
Clean and wide
Who’s that waiting
In the rain outside?

A heart for an old friend,
A hand for the new:
Love can to earth lend
Heaven’s hue
Who’s that standing
In the silver dew?

A smile for the parting,
A tear as they go,
God’s sweethearting
Ends just so
Who’s that watching
Where the black winds blow ?

He who is waiting
In the rain outside,
He who is standing
Where the dew drops wide,
He who is watching
In the wind must ride
(Tho’ the pale hands cling)

With the rose
And the ring
And the bride,
Must ride
With the red of the rose,
And the gold of the ring,
And the lips and the hair of the bride.

Pasted from http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=668
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for the wonderful PMO resouce.

I would just call it predominantly amphibrachic with alternating catalectic lines and not bother with trying to identify and duplicate every variation.  Stephens clearly wasn’t concerned with metrical regularity.  The only reason it works is that there are two distinctly stressed beats in each line that are separated by strategically placed unstressed syllables, but very few poets understand the principles of stress or have the innate sense of rhythm that lets them pull off something like this. –

Knot To Be Undone

My thanks to Mary Borne for the analysis above.

My example poem

Nighttime Revival (The Stephens)

A time for the lovers
the magic of night
no need for covers
not tonight.
Doubts, though minor
give way to delight.

Just touching for pleasure,
a kiss on the lips,
tender stroking
fingertips.
Mundane cares are
so surely eclipsed.

With morning’s arrival
we’ll wake and ascend;
another revival
My darling, my friend.
Hopes still remaining
that this never ends.

© Lawrencealot – July 19, 2014

 

 

An incidental visual template:

The Stephens

Royal Spiral

This form was created by Mary Sullivan Boren, aka,  Meter Maid on Allpoetry.com.
This is a stanzaic form consisting of exactly four quintains.
each having two rhyming couples of iambic pentameter and a tail of iambic dimeter.
Though similar to the Rondeau, it varies significantly
in the rhyme and repetition scheme, as follows:
S1: aabbc
S2: ccdde, where L5 repeats the first two feet of S1 L1.
S3: eeffg, where L1 repeats S1 L5.
S4: gghhc.
Restated:
 
This first four syllables of line 1 become the refrain in line 5 of  the second stanza.
Line 5 of the first stanza becomes the first four syllables of stanza three.
Example Poem
Cave Dweller

While young I schooled, worked; I lived in a cave.
‘Twas not remote, nor I remotely brave.
First time on my own; autumn really nice.
I lived for weeks- there ’til the snow and ice.
I paid no rent.

No neighbors, no landlord; it beat a tent.
To my mom’s house my mail (not much) was sent.
As snug as could be with storm- lantern there.
I’d study, watch town below, without care.
While young I schooled.

I paid no rent. I stayed ’til weather cooled.
With hygiene handled at the gym, I stooled
myself at deli for a bite to eat.
My big meal I’d have at work: Donny’s Beat.
My evening job.

The quiet soothed, silence ruled- absent the mob.
Would I could share with my missing heartthrob.
Later, one lass did ask me, “Where is it?
She said had she’d known she’d come to visit.
this resident.

(c) Lawrencealot – April 2012

Visual Template
Royal Spiral