The Abercrombie Poetry Form

The Abercrombie is a stanza pattern using sprung rhythm and an interlocking rhyme scheme. It is patterned after Hymn to Love by British poet, Lascelles Abacrombie (1881-1938).

The Abercrombie is:
• stanzaic, written in any number of octaves made up of 2 quatrains.
• metric, written in sprung rhythm with L1,L3,L5,L7 are pentameter, L2 & L6 are tetrameter and L4 & L8 is trimeter.
• rhymed, interlocking rhyme scheme abac dbdc, efeg hfhg, etc. L4 and L8 are feminine rhyme. The interlocking rhyme is within the octave and does not extend to the next octave.

Hymn to Love by Lascelles Abercrombie

We are thine, O Love, being in thee and made of thee,
As théou, Léove, were the déep thought
And we the speech of the thought; yea, spoken are we,
Thy fires of thought out-spoken:
But burn’d not through us thy imagining
Like fiérce méood in a séong céaught,
We were as clamour’d words a fool may fling,
Loose words, of meaning broken.

For what more like the brainless speech of a fool,
The lives travelling dark fears,
And as a boy throws pebbles in a pool
Thrown down abysmal places?
Hazardous are the stars, yet is our birth
And our journeying time theirs;
As words of air, life makes of starry earth
Sweet soul-delighted faces;

As voices are we in the worldly wind;
The great wind of the world’s fate
Is turn’d, as air to a shapen sound, to mind
And marvellous desires.
But not in the world as voices storm-shatter’d,
Not borne down by the wind’s weight;
The rushing time rings with our splendid word
[Like darkness fill’d with fires.

For Love doth use us for a sound of song,
And Love’s meaning our life wields,
Making our souls like syllables to throng
His tunes of exultation,
Down the blind speed of a fatal world we fly,
As rain blown along earth’s fields;
Yet are we god-desiring liturgy,
Sung joys of adoration;

Yea, made of chance and all a labouring strife,
We go charged with a strong flame;
For as a language Love hath seized on life
His burning heart to story.
Yea, Love, we are thine, the liturgy of thee,
Thy thought’s golden and glad name,
The mortal conscience of immortal glee,
Love’s zeal in Love’s own glory.>

Pasted from http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=668

My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for her wonderful resource site.

This is a FORM that I shall not attempt to write, for I cannot properly determine rhythm that is accentual or “sprung”. This is merely included for a more complete reference to those studying forms named for British Poets.

(abacdbdc)

Stave Stanza

A poem which is:
Stanzaic:    Having three or more sestet verses.
Isosyllabic:  Line length not specified but all of same length.
Metrical:      Usually iambic tetrameter.
Repetitive:   Having either one or two refrain repeated throughout.
Rhymed:      Scheme aabbcC ddeecC ffggcC…etc, or
                                 AabbaA AaccaA AaddaA..etc.
Other Sources:
Stave
Type:
Structure, Metrical Requirement, Repetitive Requirement, Rhyme Scheme Requirement, Isosyllabic, Stanzaic
Description:
A short-lined (usually tetrameter or less) drinking song stanza form. A stricter definition has the stave as a six-line stanza of uniform line length composed of rhymed couplets with a refrain: aabbcC ddeecC ffggcC, etc. The strictest form has the refrain as both first and last line of the sestet, giving: AabbaA AaccaA AaddaA, etc.
Schematic:
aabbcC
ddeecC
ffggcC, etc. or
AabbaA
AaccaA
AaddaA, etc.
Where C or A are refrains repeated throughout.
Thanks to Bob Newman, his is a wonderful resource.
Type: Stanzaic; rhyme; repetition; isosyllabic.
Description: A variation on using couplets to construct a sestet. The form consists of a refrain line which is the last line of each stanza, therefore the last couplet of each stanza also rhymes. Lines should be isosyllabic*.
Schematic: aabbcC ddeecC ffggcC etc
Stanza Length: 6 lines
Poem Length: 18 + lines
© Jem Farmer 2008, all rights reserved.
POSTED BY CERIDWEN AT TUESDAY, MARCH 10, 2009  
 Thanks to Jem Farmer.
 
 My Example Poem
 
Kandinsky Clothes       (Stave Stanza)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

“I want to stroll and get some sun.

You’re artistic, aren’t you, my hon?
I haven’t got a thing to wear.
You’ll paint me something if you care.”
Sure, I can do that heaven knows
you look just fine in painted clothes.

With sun-screen added to my oils,
I began my most earnest toils,
My mind had wander when you moaned,
thank Gawd your mother telephoned.
That kept the other subject closed.
you look just fine in painted clothes.

Most folks took little heed at all
as we both strolled across the mall.
One connoisseur observing it
exclaimed out loud, “That’s one fine fit.
It’s all just as I had supposed
you look just fine in painted clothes.

© Lawrencealot – July 15, 2013
 
Visual Template
 

Double Swap Octet

This form was invented by D.D.Michaels writing at Allpoetry.com.
  1. Begin with any octet with any rhyme scheme and meter. 
  2. Break lines 1 and 4 into segments which can be broken in concert with that rhyme scheme.
  3. Swap Line 1 to Line eight, after reversing those aforementioned sections
  4. Swap Line 4 to Line seven in the same manner.
Example Poem
Written in iambic pentameter with rhyme scheme: ababcdcd, 
where refrain words represent half a line.
Let’s Write a Double Swap Octet

A double swap octet let us now pen.
I built the first with one swap, not too bright.
So I am back right now to try again.
It helps if your instructor  gets it right.
Pen line four right after one, prevent yelps
from finding it won’t rhyme the way it’s set.
If your instructor gets it right it helps.
Let us now pen a double swap octet.

By just lines one and four,  all rhymes are set.
I’ve set those words in red to ring like chimes.
Now you write wonderfully, without regret.
At the end or at the break, place the rhymes.
Remember line sequence for heaven’s sake.
Then unlike me, you won’t louse up the score.
Place the rhymes at the end, or at the break.
All rhymes are set by just lines one and four.

© Lawrencealot  –  May 3, 2012

Visual Template

Double Swap Ottava

An Octet,  Rhyme: abababcc,  Meter: Iambic Pentameter
This is a form invented by Discoveria, of Allpoetry.com

The form has an Ottava Rima framework in which the sections of the first line are swapped to become the last line of the stanza, thus creating a Swap Ottava.

A Double Swap Ottava
requires that technique to be applied to two of the early lines, normally Line 1 and 2, to become the closing couplet of the octet.

Minimum length 8 Lines, no maximum
Meter: Iambic pentameter
Rhyme: ababaabcc

Example Poem

Social Schism (Double Swap Ottava)

Some do less, some do more to help the whole.
all members knew the score when tribes were small.
Great hunters, all the members would extoll.
Their prowess was a benefit for all.
The tribes were healthy when each played their role,
Our tribe will fail if no one heeds that call.
When tribes were small all members knew the score.
To help the whole,  some do less, some do more.

© Lawrencealot – January 2, 2013

Visual Template