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.

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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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Brady's Touch

Brady’s Touch
A two-stanza poem with a strict syllable count of 9, 9, 8, 8, 2; 9, 9, 8, 8, 2: the rhyme scheme is abcde;abfde. You may change the rhyme sounds (although not the scheme) for the second stanza.
*Note:This reader has no idea what the previous sentence means. – Lawrencealot
This style was created by Maryann Merryweather-Travis, in November of 2006, to honor Allen Brady.


Sepecifications restated.
Brady’s Touch is:
Stanzaic: consisting of two cinquains
Syllabic: Both stanzas having lines of 9/9/8/8/2
Rhyme Scheme: abxcd abxcd, where x is unrhymed.

My example

I Judge They’re Quick to Judge (Brady’s Touch)

Seemingly the speeding days have wrought
a group-thought shift, a transformation
that takes too far the axiom
that “Brevity’s the soul of wit”,
though true.

Early on as it approached, I thought
“This is a dreadful situation;
there’ll be a one-word contest soon.”
…and it came to pass. I’ve seen it!
Did you?

© Lawrencealot – October 6, 2014


The Trench

The Trench is an invented stanzaic form patterned after 20th century, Irish poet,Herbert Trench’s A Charge, Ode From Italy in a Time of War. Trench was known for his love poems.

The Trench is:
○ stanzaic, may be written in any number of cinquains.
○ metered, L1, L2, L4 pentameter, L3 dimeter, L5 trimeter.
○ rhymed axbab, cxdcd etc… x being unrhymed

A Charge, Ode From Italy in a Time of War by Herbert Trench 1915
If thou hast squander’d years to grave a gem
Commission’d by thy absent Lord, and while
‘Tis incomplete,
Others would bribe thy needy skill to them
Dismiss them to the street!
Should’st thou at last discover Beauty’s grove,
At last be panting on the fragrant verge,
But in the track,
Drunk with divine possession, thou meet Love
Turn at her bidding back.
When round thy ship in tempest Hell appears,
And every spectre mutters up more dire
To snatch control
And loose to madness thy deep-kennell’d Fears
Then to the helm, O Soul!
Last; if upon the cold green-mantling sea
Thou cling, alone with Truth, to the last spar,
Both castaway,
And one must perish let it not be he
Whom thou art sworn to obey!
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My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work creating the fine PMO resource.
My example poem:

Hey, Back Off (The Trench)

I’ve too much to do to, which I postponed,
so Death delay your most relentless walk.
You hold no fear
I’ve done no deed that must be now atoned
so let me finish here.

Just hold you scythe at port my long-robed friend.
Methusalean spans I don’t require,
but take your time.
I have more verbiage that I must append
regarding mete and rhyme.

Unlike old Sisyphus I don’t repeat
yet my appointed task can never end.
I started late
and though the task can never be complete
it may be up to date.

That goal’s attainable if you but wait.
But should you rush and cross my final T’s
it’s still okay.
It’s my own fault for starting much too late
It’s started anyway.

© Lawrencealot – August 1, 2014
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The Trench