• The Taylor is an invented form, patterned from Upon a Spider Catching a Fly by Edward Taylor (1642-1729) who some call the finest colonial poet although his work was not published until 1939. A puritan poet, his poems are lyrical and yet reflect a staunch Calvanist tone. 

The Taylor is:
○ stanzaic, written in any number of cinquains.
○ metric, iambic, L1 trimeter, L2 and L4 dimeter, L3 tetrameter, L5 monometer.
○ rhymed or at least near rhymed ababb cdcdd efeff etc.

Upon a Spider Catching a Fly by Edward Taylor

Thou sorrow, venom elf.
Is this thy play,
To spin a web out of thyself
To catch a fly?
For why?

I saw a pettish wasp
Fall foul therein,
Whom yet thy whorl pins did not clasp
Lest he should fling
His sting.

But as afraid, remote
Didst stand here at
And with thy little fingers stroke
And gently tap
His back.

Thus gently him didst treat
Lest he should pet,
And in a froppish waspish heat
Should greatly fret
Thy net.

Whereas the silly fly,
Caught by its leg,
Thou by the throat took’st hastily
And ‘hind the head
Bite dead.

This goes to pot, that not
Nature doth call.
Strive not above what strength hath got
Lest in the brawl
Thou fall.

This fray seems thus to us:
Hell’s spider gets
His entrails spun to whipcords’ thus,
And wove to nets
And sets,

To tangle Adam’s race
In’s stratagems
To their destructions, spoiled, made base
By venom things,
Damned sins.

But mighty, gracious Lord,
Thy grace to break the cord; afford
Us glory’s gate
And state.

We’ll Nightingale sing like,
When perched on high
In glory’s cage, Thy glory, bright,
And thankfully,
For joy.

Pasted from http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=616
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

My example

Broken Names (Form: Taylor)

I have a friend named Jack,
his brother’s Al.
Their mother wants her old name back
to boost locale

Since Ackbarr’s now her name
she thinks it’s broken,
perverted by the Islam game
when it’s a token

One can’t now yell, “Hi, Jack”
most any where
nor “Allen Ackbarr, glad you’re back!
You been somewhere
by air?”

© Lawrencealot – January 26, 2015

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Our Poetic Asides inaugural Poet Laureate, Sara Diane Doyle, has been busy-busy-busy this summer working with teen writers. But not too busy to share with her fellow Poetic Asides crew a new poetic form she developed with one of her students, David Edwards. Since Sara knows the form best, I’ll let her explain the form to you in her own words.
A few months ago I began exploring various poetic forms. With each form I tried, I would post my attempt on a forum for teen writers, where I am a mentor. One of the teens, David Edwards, got interested in forms, especially the “created” forms. He asked if anyone could invent a form and I said “sure!” Then, he got the crazy idea that we should create a form together.
To start, we wanted to throw in every poetic element that we really liked. David came up with the meter and feet and I added in the repeating line. We came up with the rhyme scheme and length together. The result is a form we call the Roundabout. In this form, the rhyme scheme comes full circle while offering repetition of one line in each rhyme set. 
The Roundabout is a four stanza poem, with each stanza consisting of 5 lines. The poem is written in iambic and the lines have 4 feet, 3 feet, 2 feet, 2 feet and 3 feet respectively. The rhyme scheme is abccb/bcddc/cdaad/dabba. Roundabouts can be on any subject. 
Several of the writers on our forum have written Roundabouts and have had a blast.” We would love for other poets to give it a try! Here are some examples to get you started.
by David Edwards
Around around the carousel
across the circles face
we cry we shout
we crash about
across the circles face
and ever always breakneck pace
by this unending route
and twists and turns
and breaks and burns
by this unending route
of ever always in and out
the yearling quickly learns
to run and yell
at ocean’s swell
the yearling quickly learns
to run and leap and then he earns
but he will never tell
there’s not a chase
that wins the race
but he will never tell.
When Spring Trips ‘Round
by Sara Diane Doyle
When wildflowers bloom once more
and raindrops touch the earth,
the faeries come
to start the hum
and raindrops touch the earth!
Come join the song, the dance the mirth!
Enjoy the juicy plum.
beneath the sun
’til day is done-
enjoy the juicy plum!
The clouds let out the beating drum-
rejoice with us as one.
Our joy we pour
for pain we bore-
rejoice with us as one.
Of gleeful hope, the snow knows none,
but speaks of faeries lore,
of magic birth,
the greatest worth
but speaks of faeries lore.

Pasted from http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/poetic-asides/poetry-craft-tips/new-poetic-form-the-roundabout
My Thanks to Poetic-Asides.

Specifications restated:
Roundabout is:
A 20 line poem, attributed to David Edwards
Stanzaic: Consisting of 4 five-line stanza
Metered: Iambic with feet of 4/3/2/2/3 per line
Rhyme Scheme: aBccB bCddC cDaaD dAbbA
Refrain: L2 is repeated as L5 in each stanza

My example


Roundabout (Roundabout)

The driver thought he’d save some time.
although the sign said no.
he’d always say
he knew the way
although the sign said no.

His load was long but even so
’twas shorter this-a-way.
He drove enough
and knew his stuff —
’twas shorter this-a-way.

He shrugged and said “I’ll be okay”,
he put the truck in gear.
He took his time
and did the crime;
he put the truck in gear.

Half through the loop, he could not clear;
it cost him many dime
to learn what’s so;
when he could go
it cost him many dime.

© Lawrencealot – January 20, 2015



Photo credit: taken by poet.

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Arkaham Ballad

Pathways for the Poet by Viola Berg (1977) is a book for and by educators. Classic poetic forms as well as many invented forms which appear to have been invented as teaching tools or exercizes for use in workshops or classrooms are included. Some of these invented forms I have found in use in internet poetry communities, a testament to their staying power. On this page I include the metric invented forms found there in which appear to be exclusive to the community of educators from whom Ms. Berg drew her support. I have yet to find these in any other source. I have included the syllabic invented forms on a separate page. Whether classroom exercise or sharpening your skill as a writer, some of these forms can be fun to play with.

Arkaham Ballad can be identified by the last line of each stanza being repeated as the first three metric feet of the next stanza. One more invented stanza form appears to be a teaching tool created by Queena Davidson Miller. It is not really a ballad but is suited to relate current events and news articles.

The Arkaham Ballad is:
○ stanzaic, written in any number of cinquains.
○ accentual syllabic, iambic, L1, L3, L4 tetrameter and L2 and L5 trimeter.
○ rhymed, rhyme scheme xabba xcddc xeffe etc. x being unrhymed.
○ composed with L5 repeated as the 1st three metric feet of L1 of the next stanza.
○ suited to current events and the news.

Police Shooting by Judi Van Gorder

They say an unarmed man was shot
by cops who’ve run-a-muck.
A family man who cut some hair
and shaved a face or two. A pair
of punks highjacked a truck.

The punks highjacked a truck and he
was at the same address,
police arrived and shots were fired,
the barber hit and soon expired
The why of it a guess.

Pasted from http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=1199#dionol
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.


My example

Conduct Unbecoming (Arkaham Ballad)

Subcultures determine the flow
when hate has been accrued.
For race and religion involve
some problems most hard to resolve.
Perhaps mankind is screwed.

Perhaps mankind is screwed my friend,
as Ferguson has shown,
and Watts before, and Rodney King,
and every other racial thing.
The hateful seeds are sown.

The hateful seeds are sown by acts
that we can justify.
We’ll plunder, hurt, and break the laws
and disregard, it harms our cause
but still won’t satisfy.

© Lawrencealot – September 1, 2014

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Arkaham Ballad

The Russell

• The Russell is a verse form composed of three alternating rhyme quatrains written with the first 3 lines iambic pentameter and the fourth line iambic trimeter. It is patterned after The Great Breath by George William Russell (1867-1935),

The Russell is:

  • stanzaic written in any number of octaves. (original poem has 6 octaves)
  • metered, L1, L4,L6 and L8 are dimeter, L2,L3,L5, and L7 are pentameter.
  • rhymed, aabbccdd.

The Great Breath by George William Russell

ITS edges foam’d with amethyst and rose,
Withers once more the old blue flower of day:
There where the ether like a diamond glows,
Its petals fade away.

A shadowy tumult stirs the dusky air;
Sparkle the delicate dews, the distant snows;
The great deep thrills–for through it everywhere
The breath of Beauty blows.

I saw how all the trembling ages past,
Moulded to her by deep and deeper breath,
Near’d to the hour when Beauty breathes her last
And knows herself in death.

Pasted from <http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=668>
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for the years of effort on the wonderful PoetryMagnumOpus resource.

My example Poem

Somewhere a Prince


Picture credit: Robert Dowling

Somewhere a Prince (The Russell)

There’s room to land a flying dragon here
and I’m above the clouds so don’t get wet.
It’s falling off the edges that I fear,
I’m higher than Tibet.

My prince desired to keep me safe and chaste.
Deliveries are made each week or two.
I hope the campaign’s through and done post-haste.
There’s no one here to do.

If he don’t win, I hope the dragon knows
to bring along the prince who does prevail.
the winner will be handsome I suppose
to make a happy tale.

© Lawrencealot – July 13, 2014

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The Russell

Three-peat Refrain

The Three-peat Refrain was invented by Mark Andrew J. Terry of Allpoetry.

It is a 13 line poem.
It is stanzaic, consisting of two quintets and a three line tail.
It is syllabic: 4/4/8/8/6
It is metric written in iambic dimeter, trimeter, and tetrameter.
It is rhymed: AbbcbAddcdAcd
Where the first line is a Refrain, repeated in each stanza.

I Dream of Pathos

If in this world
when tears are shed
a golden cup would catch what’s bled
by eyes whose pain is free-unfurled
and all of us have read

If in this world
each human heart
could empathize and do their part
to stand between the pain that swirled
what greed and bleed impart

If in this world
pathos uncurled
and guided every choice’s chart

© Mark Andrew J. Terry, June 2014

Ddoubletake comment on All Poetry – Wonderful! The form seems familiar, but I’m not really familiar enough with form poetry to place it. This is highly emotional without being overdone, which I appreciate. Lovely sentiment.

Well, the form seems like it deserves to be familiar, but did not exist in my list so I wrote the following to Mark:

The form you’ve used-
unknown to me
has turned on high my OCD
and stimulates my need to know
and I can’t let it be.

The form you’ve used-
unique for sure
has properties with much allure.
My ignorance can’t be excused
for knowledge is the cure.

The form you’ve used
you must bestow
that it’s name may endure.
…and he bestowed the name….

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Three-peat Refrain

The O’Shaughnessy

• The O’Shaughnessy

is a verse form patterned after a single stanza in “Ode” by Arthur William Edgar O’Shaughnessy (1844-1881).

The O’Shaughnessy is:
○ stanzaic, written in any number of octaves.
○ metered, sprung rhythm, alternating trimeter and tetrameter lines. The odd number lines are trimeter and the even number lines are tetrameter.
○ rhymed, rhyme scheme abababab. The odd numbered lines are feminine rhyme and the even numbered lines are masculine rhyme.

Ode by Arthur O’Shaughnessy

WE are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams;
World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world for ever, it seems.

With wonderful deathless ditties
We build up the world’s great cities,
And out of a fabulous story
We fashion an empire’s glory:
One man with a dream, at pleasure,
Shall go forth and conquer a crown;
And three with a new song’s measure
Can trample an empire down.

We, in the ages lying
In the buried past of the earth,
Built Nineveh with our sighing,
And Babel itself with our mirth;
And o’erthrew them with prophesying
To the old of the new world’s worth;
For each age is a dream that is dying,
Or one that is coming to birth.

Pasted from http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=668
My thanks to Judi Van Gorden for creating the fine resource at PMO.
Sprung rhythm is a poetic rhythm designed to imitate the rhythm of natural speech. It is constructed from feet in which the first syllable is stressed and may be followed by a variable number of unstressed syllables.[1] The British poet Gerard Manley Hopkins claimed to have discovered this previously unnamed poetic rhythm in the natural patterns ofEnglish in folk songs, spoken poetry, Shakespeare, Milton, et al. He used diacritical marks on syllables to indicate which should be drawn out (acute e.g. á ) and which uttered quickly (grave, e.g., è).
Some critics believe he merely coined a name for poems with mixed, irregular feet, like free verse. However, while sprung rhythm allows for an indeterminate number of syllables to a foot, Hopkins was very careful to keep the number of feet he had per line consistent across each individual work, a trait that free verse does not share. Sprung rhythm may be classed as a form of accentual verse, due to its being stress-timed, rather than syllable-timed,[2] and while sprung rhythm did not become a popular literary form, Hopkins’s advocacy did assist in a revival of accentual verse more generally.[3]

Pasted from <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sprung_rhythm>

For a thoroughly technical treatise on Sprung Rhythm see:


Note: The Ode presented above does NOT comply with the specifications presented, in that the second stanza has a rhyme pattern of  a a b b a b a b.

My example poem:

In Transit

In Transit (The O’Shaughnessy)

She made my ride to work a pleasure
Although she dressed in casual clothes
She’d beat the rest by any measure.
When first I thought to speak I froze.
But transit-time provided leisure
and we both used it I suppose
to stoke romance we’ll always treasure
for on this night I shall propose.

(c) Lawrencealot = July 6, 2014

The Noyes

• The Noyes is a stanzaic form using uneven short emphatic lines. It is named for English poet Alfred Noyes (1880-1958) patterned after his poem Art. Noyes is better known for The Highwayman.

The Noyes is:
○ stanzaic, written in any number of quatrains.
○ metered, L1,L2,L4 are trimeter, L3 is monometer.
abab cdcd efeg ghgh.

Art by Alfred Noyes
Yes! Beauty still rebels!
Our dreams like clouds disperse:
She dwells
In agate, marble, verse.

No false constraint be thine!
But, for right walking, choose
The fine,
The strict cothurnus, Muse.

Vainly ye seek to escape
The toil! The yielding phrase
Ye shape
Is clay, not chrysoprase.

And all in vain ye scorn
That seeming ease which ne’er
Was born
Of aught but love and care.

Take up the sculptor’s tool!
Recall the gods that die
To rule
In Parian o’er the sky.

Poet, let passion sleep
Till with the cosmic rhyme
You keep
Eternal tone and time,

By rule of hour and flower,
By strength of stern restraint
And power
To fail and not to faint.

The task is hard to learn
While all the songs of Spring
Along the blood and sing.

Yet hear—from her deep skies,
How Art, for all your pain,
Still cries
Ye must be born again!

Reject the wreath of rose,
Take up the crown of thorn
That shows
To-night a child is born.

The far immortal face
In chosen onyx fine
Delicate line by line.

Strive with Carrara, fight
With Parian, till there steal
To light
Apollo’s pure profile.

Set the great lucid form
Free from its marble tomb
To storm
The heights of death and doom.

Take up the sculptor’s tool!
Recall the gods that die
To rule
In Parian o’er the sky.

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

My Example poem

Be Thus (The Noyes)

I think therefore I am
Rene DesCartes once wrote.
and damn,
I think he’s one to quote.

I’m sure of my belief,
as each of us should be,
Good grief!
…and it’s not fed to me.

I’ve paid some heavy dues
and learned along the way.
me- I’ve much more to say.

Examine your own life
let none impose a veil
of strife.
All dogmas will grow stale.

Do I equivocate?
I very seldom do!
It’s late
but I’m not nearly through.

For seeking out what’s fun
that harms no other soul
when done
could well define your role.

Bring joy to all you meet
Don’t magnify your needs
Don’t cheat
then count on prayer beads.

Remember greed provides
no way to be content.
it causes discontent.

Enjoy the grass, the trees,
the animals that roam;
and please
enjoy the gifts of home.

© Lawrencealot – July 6, 2014

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The Noyes

The Gilbert

• The Gilbert is a verse form in which a theme reoccurs in different settings from stanza to stanza. It is named for William Schwenk Gilbert (1836-1911) of Gilbert and Sullivan fame, (operettas for which Gilbert provided the lyrics). The form is patterned after his poem The House of Peers.

The Gilbert is:
○ written in 3 septets.
○ metered, L1,L3,L4,L6,L7 are tetrameter , L2 and L5 are trimeter.
○ rhymed, rhyme scheme xabbacc xdeedff etc. x being unrhymed.

The House of Peers by WS Gilbert

When Britain really ruled the waves –
In good Queen Bess’s time)
The House of Peers made no pretence
To intellectual eminence,
Or scholarship sublime;
Yet Britain won her proudest bays
In good Queen Bess’s glorious days!

When Wellington thrashed Bonaparte,
As every child can tell,
The House of Peers, throughout the war,
Did nothing in particular,
And did it very well;
Yet Britain set the world ablaze
In good King George’s glorious days!

And while the House of Peers withholds
Its legislative hand,
And noble statesmen do not itch
To interfere with matters which
[They do not understand,
As bright will shine Great Britain’s rays,
As in King George’s glorious days!

Pasted from http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=668
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for her years of effort in creating this fine PMO resource.


My example poem
The NBA Finals 2014 (The Gilbert)

When San Antonio had lost
one game to tie it up
some thought the Heat could now prevail
at home, and through the series sail.
LeBron, he just said “Yup.”
But then the Spurs began to mesh.
The bench produced to keep Tim Fresh.

With seventy-one first half points
the Spurs put on a show.
When “Pop” told Leonard, “take the game,
to them!”, he did so to acclaim.
and made Dwayne Wade look slow.
The three main stars became his cast;
and his defense kept James harassed.

When it was done, then anyone
who knew the game could see
the team denied their dream last year
had switched into their highest gear
B-ball as meant to be.
They polished up a show for fans.
There was no sitting on your hands.

© Lawrencealot – July 3, 2014

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The Gilbert

The Chesterson

This is a poetry form used by Gilbert Keith Chesterton, (29 May 1874 – 14 June 1936) better known as G.K. Chesterton, was an English writer,lay theologian, poet, philosopher, dramatist, journalist, orator, literary and art critic, biographer, and Christian apologist. He used it to write the epic: The Ballad of the White Horse.

The Chesterson
Stanzaic: Any number of sestets.
Metered: The 2nd and 6th line are Iambic trimeter, the rest iambic tetrameter.
Rhymed: abaaab

My example poem

The Night I Didn’t Go to Jail (The Chesterton)

Midnight adventures; too much drink
had landed me in jail
more often than I’d like to think.
Tonight you found me on the brink
and posited that I re-think.
You had no cash for bail.

“That drink is just a substitute
for being with a girl.
Although I’m just a prostitute
you told me that you thought I’m cute.
The cops can never prosecute
if freely we do whirl.”

I’ve never quite been eighty-sixed
in such a pleasant way.
I briefly found myself transfixed
my mind was numb, my feelings mixed,
until to mine, her lips affixed;
now everything’s okay.

© Lawrencealot – June 20, 2014

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The Chesterson

The Dixon

The Dixon measures the differences between masculine and feminine rhyme. Patterned after the poem The Feathers of the Willow by English poet, Richard Watson Dixon (1833-1900)

The Dixon is:
○ stanzaic, written in any number of sixains made up of 2 tercets.
○ metered, iambic* trimeter
○ rhymed, rhyme scheme aab ccb. The b rhymes are strong, masculine, the rhyme on a stressed end syllable. The a and c rhymes are feminine or falling rhymes, the rhyme is in the stressed syllable of an end word ending in an unstressed syllable.

The Feathers of the Willow by Richard Watson Dixon

THE feathers of the willow
Are half of them grown yellow
———- Above the swelling stream;
And ragged are the bushes,
And rusty now the rushes,
———- And wild the clouded gleam.

The thistle now is older,
His stalk begins to moulder,
———-His head is white as snow;
The branches all are barer,
The linnet’s song is rarer,
———-The robin pipeth now.

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

My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for the wonderful PMO resource.
*Added by Lawrencealot

My Example poem.
Unsmudged (The Dixon


I could not keep from fainting
aa you produced a painting
beneath my fairest skin.
You never have recanted
the claim that it’s enchanted.
A rune that’s blocking sin.

You said no one should see it
It’s awesome, but so be it
It’s there for only you.
Whichever face you’re seeing
it represents my being
and will be always true.

© Lawrencealot – June 19, 2014


Picture credit:  Google pics, rights belong to photographer.

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The Dixon