Aeolic Ode

Aeolic Verse refers to meters commonly used in the lyrical works of Sappho and Alcaeus. Aeolis was the west and northwestern region of Asia Minor which included most of the Greek city-states and the Island of Lesbos in the 8th to 6th centuries BC, the Greek Dark Ages. Four classic meters are known from that culture, the Alcaic Stanza, the Sapphic Stanza, Glyconics (the basic form of Aeolics) and Hendecasyllabic Verse. The verse is quantitative, usually hendecasyllabic, employing 11 syllables and often includes an anceps, a quantitative metric foot that includes a syllable that could be interpreted either long or short. The meter helped set a tranquil or contemplative tone. Aeolic poetry.

• The Aeolic Ode is the earliest of the Odes, the product of an ancient Greek culture but I’ve found little descriptive information other than some quantitative scansion showing a similarity to the Adonic line of the Sapphic strophe. It is said to have a contemplative or tranquil tone.
• An asclepiad is one of the Aeolic meters attributed to Asclepiades of Samos. The aclepiad follows a particular metric pattern. It is built around the choriamb (metric pattern of LssL). The common example is a spondee followed by 2 choriambs and an iamb. LL LssL LssL sL, (L = long syllable, s = short syllable) the meter was used by Horace and others in Latin.

An example in English is: In Due Season by WH Auden
Springtime, Summer and Fall: days to behold a world
Antecedent to our knowing, where flowers think
Theirs concretely in scent-colors and beasts, the same
Age all over, pursue dumb horizontal lives.
On one level of conduct and so cannot be
Secretary to man’s plot to become divine.
Lodged in all is a set metronome: thus, in May
Bird-babes, still in the egg, click to each other “Hatch!”;
June-struck cuckoos go off pitch when obese July
Turns earth’s heating up; unknotting their poisoned ropes.
Vipers move into play; warmed by October’s nip,
Younger leaves to the old give the releasing draught.
Winter, though, has the right tense for a look indoors
At ourselves and with First Names to sit face to face,
Time for reading of thoughts, time for trying out
Of new meters and new recipes, proper time
To reflect on events noted in warmer months
Till, transmuted, they take part in a human tale.
There, responding to our cry for intelligence,
Nature’s mask is relaxed into a mobile grin,
Stones, old shoes, come alive, born sacramental signs,
Nod to us in the First Person of mysteries.
They know nothing about, bearing a mess from
The invisible sole Source of specific things.
COPYRIGHT 2007 Long Island University, C.W. Post College
Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for the wonderful PMO site. It is a wonderful resource.

Other Odes: Aeolic OdeAnacreontic Ode, Choral Ode or Pindaric Ode or Dorian Ode, Cowleyan Ode or Irregular Ode, Horatian OdeKeatsian or English Ode, RonsardianOde

Thematic Odes:

Elegy, Obsequy, Threnody Ode
Elemental Ode
Genethliacum Ode
Encomium or Coronation Ode
Epithalamion or Epithalamium and Protholathiumis
Palinode Ode
Panegyric or Paean
Triumphal Ode
Occasional Verse

Dear Readers,

The information taken from above and elsewhere leaves me in a state of confusion and despair. It seems that since the forms of that Greek and Latin era were both quantitative and irregular, and based upon long-short sounds that English (outside of music) does not do well, emphasizing instead stressed vs unstressed syllables – that I must take the bull by the horns and announce that since 21st century poets are
transformative (as all poets have been), I shall herein transform.

I have devised for my structure of the Aeolic Ode the following metric. It incorporates:
(1) Adonic line – a verse line with a dactyl followed by a spondee or trochee; supposedly used in laments by Adonis.
(2) Hendecasyllabic lines,
(3) A choriamb, to approximate an asclepiad.
(4) A foot that possesses an optional stress (approximating an anceps)
(5) The four metric feet include two, three, and four-toed metric feet. That alone is irregular.
(6) Rhyme is purely optional, in use and position.
(7) Stanza length and number is left to poets discretion.

First foot: A Dactyl
2nd foot: Either a spondee or a trochee|
3rd foot: A Choriamb (DUM da da DUM)
4th foot: An Iamb

Below is my example poem, and a visual template for my version of the Aeolic Ode for the 21st Century.

Ode to a Three-toed Sloth (Aeolic Ode)
Praise now the three-toed sloth who’s a folivore.
Hang he does, upside down, in a tranquil way
Eating the leaves and shoots and not needing more.
Cockroaches, moths and algae and ciliates,
beetles and fungi call his hair home sweet home.
He is a happy host for a range of life.
Eating what other cannot abide, he takes
Much time for every action for little food
value has leaves. Digestion requires a month.
Though he’ll descend each week just to take a leak
poop and then cover up the latrine he dug,
he’s most content up high. Do you wonder why?
Everything’s done upside down because of claws
made for that task, including a nap and sex.
Even some sloths who died have remained attached.
Half of the muscle mass that’s allotted to
beasts of their same size saves that hard- gleaned glucose
Therefore a sloth’s sloth screams “elegant” design.
© Lawrencealot – August 15, 2014
Visual template for this particular form.
Aeolic Ode

Amaranth poetry form

Amaranth is an invented verse form that was probably created as a teaching tool by Viola Gardner. It makes deliberate use of the 9 most common metric feet. Each line is one metric foot, the pattern changing from line to line. 
The Amaranth is:
  • 9 lines strophe. It is a stand alone poem.
  • metric, the 9 most common metric feet are used in sequence.
    L1 Spondee SS
    L2 Iamb uS
    L3 Pyrrhic uu
    L4 Dactyl Suu
    L5 Trochee Su
    L6 Amphimacer SuS
    L7 Choriamb SuuS
    L8 Anapest uuS
    L9 Amphibrach uSu
  • rhymed at the discretion of the poet, although the metric restrictions are probably enough to contend with in this verse form.On the Cross by Judi Van GorderBehold!
    I am
    guileless, bereft
    pleasing God
With sincere thanks to Judi Van Gorder  for the above from the wonderful PMO site.
My Example Poem
Psychiatry     (Amaranth)
are made
in the
shedding light,
clearing the way
for a true
© Lawrencealot – November 27, 2013
Visual Template