The Bridges

• The Bridges is a stanzaic form with a formal tone created by the long and short lines and exact rhyme scheme. It is patterned after Nightingales by English poet Robert Bridges(1844-1930).
• The Bridges is:
○ stanzaic, written in any number of sixains.
○ metered, L1,L2, L4 of each stanza is iambic hexameter, L5 iambic pentameter and L3 and L6 are dimeter.
○ rhymed, rhyme scheme aabccb ddeffe etc.
Nightingales by Robert Bridges
BEAUTIFUL must be the mountains whence ye come,
[And bright in the fruitful valleys the streams, wherefrom
Ye learn your song:
Where are those starry woods? O might I wander there,
Among the flowers, which in that heavenly air
Bloom the year long!
Nay, barren are those mountains and spent the streams:
Our song is the voice of desire, that haunts our dreams,
A throe of the heart,
Whose pining visions dim, forbidden hopes profound,
No dying cadence nor long sigh can sound,
For all our art.
Alone, aloud in the raptured ear of men
We pour our dark nocturnal secret; and then,
As night is withdrawn
From these sweet-springing meads and bursting boughs of May,
Dream, while the innumerable choir of day
Welcome the dawn.
Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for the wonderful PMO resoruce site.
Now my friends, do not try to fit the above poem to the template displayed below, unless for your own edification, because the poem does not conform to the specifications. And that is okay, for the text above states that it is PATTERNED AFTER, and that much is true.
What I could not find out is who did the patterning? No matter. We can now write The Bridges to these specifications:
Syllabic: 12/12/4/12/10/4
stanzaic, any number of sestets (6 line stanzas).
Rhyme scheme: aabccb ddeffe etc.
Metric: Iambic hexamter, iambic pentameter, iambic dimeter
My example poem
The Pregnant Bride (The Bridges)
“How are you feeling”? asked my doc , and I replied.
“I’m eighty-five and have a young and pregnant bride!”
I’m feeling great.”
She’s eighteen, beautiful, and gonna have my child.
It’s wonderful. I think that’s very wild!
I’m no light-weight.”
The doctor thought it over then made this retort,
“I knew an avid hunter once, a hearty sport.
who erred one day.
He grabbed an umbrella when reaching for his gun
and aimed it at a bear which had begun
to run his way.”
“He pulled the handle. Do you know what happened next?
The bear dropped dead in front of him!”- I was perplexed.
“That cannot be”,
I said, “Someone else must have shot that doggone bear.”
“Correct”, the doctor said, “I do declare
I see you see.”
© Lawrencealot – June 17, 2014
Visual Template
The Bridges