Tho Sau Chu

The following description and example are reposted with permission from Poetry Magnum Opus, with thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on that fine resource.

Tho Sau Chu or Six-Word Verse [Vietnamese] is measured by word count and uses either alternate of envelope rhyme. It can be written in quatrains or octaves. When written in octaves it is called Six-Eight Poetry  The elements of the Tho Sau Chu are:

  1. stanzaic, written in any number of quatrains. It can also be written in any number of octaves.
  2. measured by word count, 6 words per line.
  3. rhymed, either alternate, abab cdcd etc. (when written as Six-Eight abababab cdcdcdcd etc.) or envelope, abba cddc etc. (when written in octaves abbaabba cddccddc etc.)

My Example

Form: Tho Sau Chu

Old New Form Takes a Bow

This poetry form comes from Vietnam
which doesn’t rhyme with Uncle Sam
but with either mom or bomb.
Am I certain? Yes I am!

If my lines led you astray,
it’s because I’m a contrary guy.
I feel my misdirection is okay
when a second reading explains why.

I’m writing this Tho Sau Chu
(though English cannot do it proud.)
This form hereby makes its debut
with only one hundred words allowed.

I think none will be uptight
with a new form that’s presented
to shine and share the spotlight;
with ninety-six words I feel contented.

© Lawrencealot – January 31, 2015

Visual Template


Droighneach (drá-yi-nah, ‘thorny’) is a traditional Irish quatrain stanza of 9-to-13-syllable lines alternately rimed (abab), always on 3-syllable words, with at least two cross-rimes linking the pair of lines in each half and involving those lines’ end-words, plus alliteration in every line, usually between the end-word and the preceding stressed word—always the case for a quatrain’s last line. Being Irish, it also requires the dunedh, meaning it should end where it began (opening word or phrase or line repeated at the end). It is also described here:
…and here:
My thanks to Gary Kent Spain, aka Venicebard on Allpoetry.
I have copied below both links he provided, unfortunately neither poet was able to follow the first requirement – ending each line with a three-syllable word.
Author Notes accompanying Gary’s Poem below:
My hobby since childhood—never quite grew up! In the 80s, when I was a programmer and had tons of money but no life, I acquired a collection of micro-scale (1/300) WW2 Russian front stuff: once counted just draft horses and had over a thousand, plus several hundred cavalry. Now, of course, no time nor space for them, so the above is all in my mind at the moment.
God’s Paintbrush (Self-Satirical Droighneach)
I’m a military miniature:  commander,
whose panzer division invades a vast library.
No adversary yet:  I’d prefer to philander
but, in all candor, can’t, be’ng lead—quite the contrary!
I’m ten millimeters tall, dark-haired, and handsomely
decked-out in dandy garb, my honor unimpaired.
A fine match! had God not dared, rudely, randomly,
to make me small, handy for his wars, all undeclared.
I see God now, armed with air-brush, advancing
to paint pants with coats field grey, dapper and debonair.
Care He’ll take to touch hands and face with flesh, enhancing
our stance’s appearance, dirt-dappled and doctrinaire.
Shall we commend God’s industry?  Call His quandary
fond, airy prospect of war-games couched on calendar.
His hand arrays us, ready by time’s boundary.
I’m a military miniature:  come and err.
[And, dear jongleur, please pronounce err properly, else all will end up unseemly and up in the ‘air’!]

Droighneach (dra’iy-nach) Gaelic, is Oglachas, straying from some of the stringent rules of dán direach yet adding other requirements which make the frame no less difficult. It is sometimes referred to as “the thorny” because of the degree of difficulty in writing this ancient Irish Verse Form that employs cross rhyme and requires 3 syllable end words.

The Droighneach is:
• a loose stanzaic form usually written with any number of octaves but it could be quatrains.
• syllabic with each line with 9 to 13 syllables.
• terminated, written with 3 syllable end words.
• rhymed, with alternating end rhyme abab cdcd etc.
• composed with cross rhyme. There are at least two cross-rhymes in each couplet and alliteration in each line; usually the final word of the line alliterates with the preceding stressed word, this is always true of the last line.
• written with the defining features of most Celtic poems, cywddydd (harmony of sound) and dunadh (beginning and ending the poem with the same word, phrase or line.)

(x x d) b x x x (x x a)
x x x x a x x x (x x b)
x x x x x b (x x a)
x x x x a x x (x x b)
x x x x x d x x (x x c)
x x x c x x x x x x (x x d)
x x d x x x x x x (x x c)
x x x x c x (d x d)
Incomprehensible by Judi Van Gorder
Brutality bursts in the streets of Fallujah,
a plethora of purposeless mutilation,
the execution, a disgrace to Allah,
a disgusting coup d’ etat in jubilation.
Humanity is not served by the criminals,
victim’s funerals expose the amorality.
A pity mankind oft’ acts as cannibals,
animals display less base brutality.
Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on the PMO resource.

Droighneach (dra’iy-nach):
A loose stanza form. Each line can have from nine to thirteen syllables, and it always ends in a trisyllabic word. There is rhyming between lines one and three, two and four, etc. Stanzas can have any number of quatrains. There are at least two cross-rhymes in each couplet and alliteration in each line; usually the final word of the line alliterates with the preceding stressed word, and this is always true of the last line.

x x d b x x x (x x a)
x x x x a x x x (x x b)
x x x x x b (x x a)
x x x x a x x (x x b)
x x x x x d x x (x x c)
x x x c x x x x x x (x x d)
x x d x x x x x x (x x c)
x x x x c x (x x d)

Silken Lady
A silken coat enhances her elegance,
casually clad, but warm and enfolding
her slim limbs in folds of furry fragrance;
green eyes gaze haughtily- a heart beholding.
She licks her lips, a pink tongue seen- disappears;
a lazy yawn, with blinking eyes, amazes,
her devoted audience she domineers.
A soft scream- hairs on end- her purr appraises.
©Leny Roovers 29-10-2004
Pasted from

My example poem

Grandiose (Droighneach)

Contemplate before the jongleurs congregate.
If your work is great, that work they may elevate
some day (some say you’ have to wait and die), consecrate
what they appreciate, and critics nominate.

Given my more likely fate (if you are wondering)
to wander in obscurity (we populate
the wide world, mate) and cause laughs by my blundering.
To be but an underling is hard to contemplate.

© Lawrencealot – August 8, 2014

Visual Template


Lisa Rima

This is a new form invented by Lisa La Grange of Allpoetry.
It consists of two or more quatrains of set syllabic length.
and with a specified rhyme pattern.
Syllable are: 8/8/8/3, and
Rhyme is: zzza
Meter is:
da da DUM da DUM da DUM da for the 8 syllable lines, and
da da DUM for the final line of each stanza.
(Anapest, amphibrach, trochee,  (same thing as Anapest, iamb, iamb) then
Anapest for line 4)
Example Poem

Pony Up
I suppose our band is corny,
and our plight about as thorny,
as a Bishop getting horny.
That’s a bit. 
Now John Wayne is bold and dashing,
and friend Clint is big on smashing,
and they both are really cashing
in on it. 
The guitar I play beautif’ly,
I quaff my beers down dutif’ly
and play poker quite fruitfully
when I sit. 
When required my firearm shooting
at the bandits who are looting
will just leave the children hooting
quite a bit.
It’s for peanuts that we’re playing
that’s despite skill we’re displaying
so if they do not start paying
I shall quit. 
© Lawrencealot – August 24,2013
Here is a Visual Template:

7/5 Trochee Poetry Form

The 7/5 Trochee, created by Andrea Dietrich,
of 2 or more quatrain stanzas ( 8 lines or more)  with the following set rules:

Meter:  Trochaic
Syllabic: 7/5/7/5
Rhyme Scheme:  abcb or abab

The meter is trochee, which means alternating stressed and
unstressed beats in each line, with each line beginning and
ending in a stressed syllable. This is a simple lyrical type|little poem, so rhymes will be basic, nothing fancy.

The poem itself should give a description of something of interest to the poet.

There is not a set number of these quatrain type stanzas,

but a typical 7/5 Trochee would consist of two quatrains,

with the second stanza serving to tie up the idea presented in the first stanza.

Pasted from <>

 Example Poem


Sleeping eight hours every night
Seems to some divine.
Choosing such is quite their right.
Just don’t make it mine.

 I will sleep that much or more.
taking smaller blocks.
For in afternoon I snore
Even wearing socks.

© Lawrencealot –  June 19, 2012
Visual Template

English Ballet (bal-lett)

English Ballet (bal-lett)
stanzaic, written in any multiple of quatrains or quintains.
(The quatrains can be expanded to quintains by breaking L1 of each stanza into 2 lines at the end of the first phrase.)
Metered when quatrains, L1-L3 tetrameter, L4 dimeter.
Rhyme Pattern: aaaB cccB dddB, etc.  (aaaBcccBdddB)
Metered when quintains, L1, L2, and L5 dimeter, L3 & L4 tetrameter.
Rhyme Pattern: AbbbA AcccA AdddA, etc.  (AbbbAAcccAAdddA)
Description of form a copy & paste from
Example Poem
Fall They Must  (English Ballet – Quintains)
The snowflakes fall
so powder dry,
they seem but dust upon the sky
unseen ’til on the ground they lie
The snowflakes fall.
The snowflakes fall
in twisting flight
large enough to hold when they light
on mittens to view with delight.
The snowflakes fall.
The snowflakes fall
They’re big and wet.
They taste good on my tongue, and yet
I’ll hate to shovel them I’ll bet.
The snowflakes fall.
© Lawrencealot – December 23, 2012
Visual Templates for both styles: