Xenolith

Xenolith

People have been telling me for quite some time now that because I love poetry forms so much I should invent one of my own. So I did. 🙂

When I started out I had no idea what I wanted to do for my form, other than I wanted it to be unique. Once I decided base my chapbook on poetry forms following the letters of the alphabet I knew the name of my form had to start with the letter X. Why X? Because no one else has done a form starting with the letter X.

After consulting several dictionaries, I finally settled on a name for my form – Xenolith. A xenolith is fragment of extraneous rock embedded in magma or another rock. I kept coming back to this while I was playing around with syllable counts and rhyme schemes – a rock within a rock. How about a poem within a poem? And so my form was born.

The Xenolith is a 15 line poem. Seven of the lines have twelve syllables per line and are mono-rhymed. Eight of the lines have eight syllables per line and are written in rhyming couplets. You can separate the 12 syllable lines from the 8 syllable lines and have two complete poems.

Schematic.

1 xxxxxxxxxxxA
2 xxxxxxxB
3 xxxxxxxxxxxA
4 xxxxxxxB
5 xxxxxxxxxxxA
6 xxxxxxxC
7 xxxxxxxC
8 xxxxxxxxxxxA
9 xxxxxxxD
10 xxxxxxxD
11 xxxxxxxxxxxA
12 xxxxxxxE
13 xxxxxxxxxxxA
14 xxxxxxxE
15 xxxxxxxxxxxA

 

No Guarantee

A poet does not always use his eyes to see
The beauty in a thought or deed.
Inspiration is found wherever it may be –
Beauty to make the heart concede –
Whether moonlight reflected on a midnight sea,
The white curl of the ocean spray,
The glitter of a summer’s day.
Or, with the deft touch of the poet’s master key,
Reshape the mind into a lie –
Show instead a new path to try.
Like cobwebs dim, clear from the mind the soul’s debris,
Invite in the beauty unseen
And unveil imagination’s dark devotee
To keep the questing mind e’er keen.
I know now a poem, like life, has no guarantee.

12 syllables, mono rhyme

A poet does not always use his eyes to see.
Inspiration is found wherever it may be
Whether moonlight reflected on a midnight sea
Or, with the deft touch of the poet’s master key,
Like cobwebs dim, clear from the mind the soul’s debris,
And unveil imagination’s dark devotee.
I know now a poem, like life, has no guarantee.

8 syllables, rhyming couplets

The beauty in a thought or deed,
Beauty to make the heart concede –
The white curl of the ocean spray
The glitter of a summer’s day . . .
Reshape the mind into a lie; 
Show instead a new path to try;
Invite in the beauty unseen
To keep the questing mind e’er keen.

Pasted from http://randomwriterlythoughts.blogspot.com/2011/09/xenolith.html

Great Thanks to Carol R. Ward

Related forms: See Trick Poetry

My example

Hold Fast and Long Your Heart (Xenolith)

To all young men intending to be kind and wise
Never give all the heart, for love
those same attentions rendered, coyly improvised
Will hardly seem worth thinking of
when with another man your lass wears a disguise
To passionate women if it seem
Certain, and they never dream
But knows the hook is set, thus needs no alibis.
That it fades out from kiss to kiss;
For everything that’s lovely is
Perhaps a beauty built by your expected prize,
But a brief, dreamy. Kind delight.
Until you know her actions are devoid of lies
O never give the heart outright.
Regard you heart on trial while trying out her sighs.

© Lawrencealot – August 31, 2014

12 syllables, mono rhyme

To all young men intending to be kind and wise
those same attentions rendered, coyly improvised
when with another man your lass wears a disguise
but knows the hook is set, thus needs no alibis.
Perhaps a beauty built by your expected prize,
Until you know her actions are devoid of lies
Regard you heart on trial while trying out her sighs.

8 syllables, rhyming couplets

Never give all the heart, for love
Will hardly seem worth thinking of
To passionate women if it seem
Certain, and they never dream
That it fades out from kiss to kiss;
For everything that’s lovely is
But a brief, dreamy. Kind delight.
O never give the heart outright.

Here for the couplet rhyme portion of this poem I have copied the
first lines of Wm Butler Yeats’ “Never Give All the Heart”,
intending indeed to enclose something OLD within my own NEW work

Visual template

Xenolith

 

The Yeats

• The Yeats is a verse form patterned after Where My Books Go by Irish poet, William Butler Yeats. (1865-1939)

The Yeats is:
â—‹ an octastich, a poem in 8 lines.
â—‹ metric, accentual 3 heavy stresses per line.
â—‹ rhymed, rhyme scheme xaxaxaxa x being unrhymed. The even numbered lines have feminine or falling end syllables.

Where My Books Go by William Butler Yeats

All the words that I utter,
And all the words that I write,
Must spread out their wings untiring,
And never rest in their flight,
Till they come where your sad, sad heart is,
And sing to you in the night,
Beyond where the waters are moving,
Storm-darken’d or starry bright.

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

My Example Poem

Annie’s Gone (The Yeats)

Every thought I’m thinking
and every word I write
revolves around your leaving;
I’m all alone tonight.
I could not have predicted
when all things seemed alright
that hearts so bound together
could not restrict your flight.

© Lawrencealot – August 1, 2014