The following description is reposted with permission from The Poets Garret, with thanks to Kathy Anderson.


Persian poetry influenced other nations and whilst Turkish poetry also developed it was slightly later and influenced by Persian poetry and was popular in Turkey until the fall of the Ottoman Empire.

Early Urdu Mathnawi was at first religious in nature, but because of Persian influence included romance, and adventure and even secular stories.

The Arabic Mathnawi (Called Muzdawidj) has one major difference in that it is presented as a triplet; a. a. a. / b. b. b. / c. c. c.. pattern, rather than a couplet like the Persian version.



This Bitter Earth


It went to my head what you said yesterday
And again the thoughts burn yet become doubts play
For whenever hearts are involved I must pray.

How goes these whispers into the heavenlies
To evoke imaginative displays, please
Me as much as the cello with bow glories.

Charms take me away as do the words we speak,
When there are clouds in our eyes they tend to leak
For far gone days and flung desires bespeak.

Kathy Anderson


See also: Mathnawi

My Example

Form: Muzdawidj


How familiar is that grand old checker cab
where passengers sometimes feel compelled to gab,
for like a barkeep, it’s covered by the tab.
Put tradition and romance off to the side,
Sometimes a taxi’s a must if you’re to ride.
Frequently it’s hard to find a better guide.

© Lawrencealot – February 21 2015

Englyn unodle union

The englyn is a Welsh verse form, and a difficult one. On the web, there are some definitions of the englyn that make it seem simple, but they are wrong. As well as syllable counts and rhyme, there is the important matter of cynghanedd, a concept peculiar to Celtic poetry. My first englyn (I have only written two, and have no plans to do any more) took me almost a whole afternoon to write, despite the form only having four lines. It turned out like this:

In flight, the butterfly knows utter bliss.
Sun today, soon to die,
Full of joy, life on the fly
Scales the void, the scombroid sky.

The sixth syllable of the first line rhymes with the other three lines. The syllable counts are 10, 6, 7, 7. And then there’s the cynghanedd…
Cynghanedd is an attribute of a line of poetry, and there are several kinds of it. Each is a tightly-specified structural requirement involving rhyme or alliteration, or both. There are four kinds relevant to the englyn. Each line of the englyn must exhibit some kind of cynghanedd. Some kinds can be used in particular positions within the englyn, and not others. 
My example uses all four kinds of cynghanedd, but this is not essential. The first line exhibits cynghanedd lusg, the second cynghanedd groes (which is hard to do in English), the third cynghanedd draws, and the fourth cynghanedd sain. I believe I have written a perfectly-formed englyn, but it is hard to be certain, since the requirements are so complicated. I wrote it using a description of the englyn by Dan Pugh in the magazine Poetry Nottingham International (Vol 55 No 1, Spring 2001). My butterfly englyn appeared in Vol 55 No 2 and no-one complained about it, so perhaps it really is OK. 

Pasted from
My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource.
Wikipedia definitions:
Cynghanedd groes (“cross-harmony”)[edit]
All consonants surrounding the main stressed vowel before the caesura must be repeated after it in the same order. However, the final consonants of the final words of each half of the line must be different, as must the main stressed vowel of each half. For example:
clawdd i ddal / cal ddwy ddwylaw
CL Dd Dd L / C L Dd Dd L
Cynghanedd draws (partial “cross-harmony”)
Exactly as in cynghanedd groes, except that there are consonants at the beginning of the second half of the line which are not present in the series of ‘echoed’ consonants:
Rhowch wedd wen dan orchudd iâ (R. Williams Parry) [‘Place a white face under a veil of ice’]
Here the consonant sequence {rh ch dd [accent]} is repeated with different stressed vowels (short <e> and long <â>). It will be noticed that the <n> at the end of the first half plays no part in the cynghanedd: the line-final word, “iâ” instead ends in a vowel; if this word also ended in an <n>, there would be generic rhyme between the two words, which is not permitted in cynghanedd.
Note that the {d n} of the second half of the line is also not part of the cynghanedd: this is the difference between cynghanedd groes and cynghanedd draws. There may be any number of unanswered consonants in this part of the line, as long as the initial sequence of consonants and accent is repeated; compare an extreme possibility, where only one syllable is repeated:
Pla ar holl ferched y plwyf! (Dafydd ap Gwilym) [‘A plague on all the girls of the parish!’]
(Words beginning with h- are treated as beginning with a vowel.)
Cynghanedd sain (“sound-harmony”)
The cynghanedd sain is characterised by internal rhyme. If the line is divided into three sections by its two caesuras, the first and second sections rhyme, and the third section repeats the consonantal patterns of the second. For example:
pant yw hwy / na llwy / na llaw
/ N Ll / N Ll
Cynghanedd lusg (“drag-harmony”)
The final syllable before the caesura in the first half of the line makes full rhyme with the penultimate syllable of the line-final polysyllabic word (i.e. the main stressed syllable of the second half). For example:
duw er ei radd / a’i addef,

My example

Self-Doubt (Englyn unodle union)
  (én-glin éen-oddle éen-yon)

She has undenied wit, yet denies it
At times she too must sit
and speculate – but a bit,
Did I peculate this hit?

© Lawrencealot – December 13, 2014

*Peculate : To embezzle (funds) or engage in embezzlement.

Visual Template

Englyn unodl union

Related Welsh Form are HERE.

Englyn unodl crwca

Englyn unodl crwca, én-glin éen-oddle crewc (crooked short one rhyme englyn) the 4th codified Official Welsh Meter, an Englyn,, is the structural reverse of Englyn unodl union which is far more popular. The englyn unodl crwca is rarely used.

The Englyn unodl crwc is:
• stanzaic, written as any number of quatrains,
• syllabic, 7-7-10-6 syllable per line.
• rhymed, mono rhymed. In L3 the main rhyme is found in the last half of the line followed by caesura and gair cyrch.
• composed with “gair cyrch” in L3 (syllables in the last half of a line that follow the main rhyme marked by caesura. The gair cyrch end rhyme is to be echoed or consonated as secondary rhyme in the 1st half of L4. The caesura often appears as a dash.)

x x x x x x A

x x x x x x A

x x x x x x A – x x b

x b x x x A

Kyt ymwnel kywyt, bryt brys,

yn llawen llewych yslys,

lletryt dallon donn ef ai dengys—gud

lliw blaen gruc Generys.

—- Einion Offeiriad 15th century

Upon this Rock by Judi Van Gorder

He chose a simple fisherman,

rock foundation holds God’s plan,

His anointed Sacristan – head of church,

Peter’s perch . . . Vatican.

Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

Englyn Unodl Crwca
Type: Structure, Metrical Requirement, Rhyme Scheme Requirement, Stanzaic
Description: (englin eenoddle crewcah) A quatrain with syllable counts: seven, seven, ten, and six and having rhyme and cross-rhyme.
Origin: Welsh

a = main rhyme.
b = subsidiary rhyme that has consonance,
assonance, alliteration

Cross rhymes can shift a few positions:
a = 7-9
b = 2-4
Rhythm/Stanza Length: 4

Pasted from

My thanks to Charles L. Weatherford for his years of work on the wonderful Poetrybase resource.

Related Welsh Form are HERE.

My example


Meth-a-morphosis (Englyn unodl cdwc)

My friends girl-friend’s mouth’s a mess
It is meth-mouth I confess.
The facts she will not address – what great cost
to be lost to excess.

She is not dumb, she’s aware.
Need’s too strong, she doesn’t care
though she knows there’s help out there – not for her!
She’ll defer to despair.

© Lawrencealot – December 12, 2014

Visual template

Englyn unodl cdwca

Englyn proest dalgron

Englyn proest dalgron, én-glin proyst dál-gron ( half rhymed englyn), sometimes referred to as Englyn Proest Cyfnewidlog is verse that utilizes proest or half rhyme but no full rhyme. It is the 6th codified Official Welsh Meter, anEnglyn,

The englyn proest dalgron is:
• stanzaic, written in any number of quatrains.
• syllabic, made up of 7 syllable lines.
• rhymed, all of the lines half rhyme. In this stanza form, the rhymes are formed by vowels of the same length or by vowels of the same length followed by a consonant or the vowel w (long oo in English). The key is the rhymed syllables must be the same length. Long sounds match with long sounds and short sounds match with short sounds. (vote and boot are the same length but, bale and bill are not)
x x x x x x a
x x x x x x a
x x x x x x a
x x x x x x a
Agharat hoen leuat liw
yghiyeth lewychweith law
wyf oth garat, glwyfgat glew,
ynvyt drew benyt y’mbyw
—- Einion Offeiriad 15th century

Limey’s Adventure by Judi Van Gorder
The shiny lime green frog can
jump over the fox’s den
without waking fox within,
then croaks and soaks in the sun.

Peck’s Pond by Judi Van Gorder
Murky surface of Peck’s Pond,
the stocked rainbow trout swim stunned.
The camp sick children attend
and fish sitting on the sand.

Sabino Canyon by Stephen Arndt
Stopping by a spring-fed lake
On our carefree canyon hike,
Giving feet a grateful soak,
I inspect a spiring peak.
Former aeons formed these rocks
With their crevices and cracks;
Here are boulders stacked like bricks,
There are carved-out caves and nooks.
See the massive mountain ridge,
Cacti clutching to a ledge,
Wearing blossoms like a badge,
You may gaze—they will not grudge.
When I hear the canyon rills
With the gurgling sound that lulls,
Seeing slopes arise from dells,
I wish my house had such walls.
Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

My example

Cozy Clique

Cozy Clique (Englyn proest dalgron)

Fine friends frequent neon bars
downing drafts of local beers
ignoring jokes of boring boors
laugh aloud at one of her’s.

© Lawrencealot – December 10, 2014

Related Welsh Form are HERE.

Visual template

Englyn proest dalgron

Englyn penfyr

Englyn penfyr, én-glin pén-fir or short ended englyn in the old style, is the 1st codified Official Welsh Meter, anEnglyn. The oldest Welsh poetry in manuscript (early 9th century) was found written in the margin of the Juvencus Metrical Version of the Psalms, preserved in the Cambridge University Library. It is said to be stanzas written in praise of the Trinity in the englyn penfyr meter. Both the Englyn penfyr and the Englyn milwr are associated with “primitive Britain” and were out of vogue by the 12th century.

The englyn penfyr is:

  • stanzaic, written in any number of tercets.
  • syllabic, a 10 syllable line followed by two 7 syllable lines.
  • rhymed, mono rhymed, the main rhyme (the dominant rhyme of the stanza) of L1 found in the last half of the line followed by caesura end rhymes with L2 and L3.
  • composed with an addendum, a “gair cyrch” in L1 (syllables in the last half of a line that follow the main rhyme marked by caesura. The gair cyrch end rhyme is to be echoed or consonated as secondary rhyme in the 1st half of L2. The caesura often appears as a dash.)


Y wlad mewn gwisg o flodau -yn galw

Dwy galon i lwybrau

Yr ifanc drwy yr hafau

x x x x x x x A x b

x x b x x x A

x x x x x x A

The countryside, in its floral dress, calls

two hearts to roam the paths

of the young through summer days.

by Dosbarth Tanyroes “Y Flwyddn” 20th century found in Singing in Chains by Mererid Hopwood

Mud laps by Judi Van Gorder

Ripples in the mud pool fanned ~ far and wide

spreading inside-out to land

in small laps upon the sand.

Oprah by Judi Van Gorder

She sings her own tune – in touch with her soul

she shares her goal, grasps the moon

with wisdom none can impugn.

First Light by DC Martinson

Night before a Christmas morn – stars tarry;

Hymns carry a world so torn

To be saved by God’s Yet-born.

Night before a Christmas morn – all is seen

Red and green. Our hearts, forsworn,

Still are gifts to God’s Low-born.

Night before a Christmas morn – in the dark,

Holy spark. Candles have borne

Ev’ry soul to God’s High-born.

Dreams by Stephen Arndt

Come, let the ember lights burn low; no more

_____Let flames roar and flare, for so

_____Drowsing dreams may freely flow;

And let me dream what lies in store (I know

_____Men can’t show me that far shore

_____Which my plodding might explore).

Our dreamings mimic what might be, for they

_____Mold the clay to cast a key

_____Opening new worlds to see.

I am not deaf to what dreams say. Watch me:

_____I am free to stop and stay

_____Or to wend my winding way.

Are dreams like dice on which to bet? How few

_____Pay what’s due on piled-up debt!

_____What they grudge is what you get.

I know my dreams may not come true, and yet

_____Why forget that if they do,

_____I shall fly to where they flew?

Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

My attempt

Evil Must be Fought (Englyn penfyr)

I’d really like to preach peace – but I can’t.
Can’t chant for the wars to cease.
Can’t call to disband police.

When attacked you must defend – or else die.
You ask why do some descend?
Evil and greed I contend.

When evil tried to impose – and by force
I’d endorse those who arose,
though it was not peace they chose.

© Lawrencealot – December 10, 2014

Related Welsh Form are HERE.

Visual template

Englyn penfyr

Goliardic Verse

Goliardic Verse (Germanic verb to sing or entertain) was a popular verse of the Goliards, wandering scholars of the 12th and 13th century in rhymed and accented Latin. The form became linked with satire specifically, mockery of the Church.

Goliard Verse is:
• syllabic, 13 syllable lines, in hemistiches of 6 and 7 syllables. Sometimes L4 is only 12 syllables.
• stanzaic, written in any number of quatrains.
• mono-rhymed, lines end in feminine rhyme. Rhyme scheme aaaa bbbb.

Lament by Judi Van Gorder 

Mother Church serves the poor, it is one of her niches.
Now she’s been tested with threat to her riches 
by former altar boys, abused, turned into snitches, 
claiming clerics have strayed, unzipping their britches.

Pasted from <>
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource

German and Austrian Poetic Forms:

Bar Form, Dinggedicht, Goliardic VerseKnittelvers, Minnesang, Nibelungen,Schuttelreim

My Example

Unless Twice Perverted (Goliard Verse)

All cults and churches too, deserve a bit of mocking
(On fables they are based); that millions bite is shocking.
We’ve all heard tales of priests and choirboys they’ve been stalking.
I’ll bet there’ve been girls too, but they have not been talking.

© Lawrencealot – November 14, 2014

Visual template

Goliard Verse

Blues Stanza

The Blues was born in 19th century from the African American experience expressing “lamentation and complaint”. Originally written for music, with the 3rd and 7th notes of the scale flattened, the poem should capture the same minor tone. The Blues confronts life head on, often expressed in sarcasm, wit and humor. Langston Hughes (1902 – 1967) is credited with making the Blues as much a part of American literature as it is a part of American music. It is poetry “created on the fly”, as the blues singers did, making up lyrics on the spot. . . . A statement is made, then repeated to give the poet a moment to come up with a rhyming response. There you have the blues stanza.

The Blues Stanza is:
• stanzaic, written in any number of triplets.
• accentual verse with 4 to 6 stresses a line, or whatever. The syllable count is 12 or close enough. You can see, there is lots of room to wiggle here. The meter changes to iambic pentameter when the stanza is used in the Blues Sonnet.
• structured. L1 makes a statement, L2 repeats L1 with minor variation, often a beat or two short, and L3 responds, with a “climatic parallel” to the first 2 lines. (a culminating contrast or extension of the statement) In effect you are writing a rhyming couplet posing as a triplet.
• rhymed, rhyme scheme aaa, bbb, ccc, ddd.
• adapted by some poets like Hughes to break the lines roughly in half, making a six line stanza.
• infused with a theme that comes from complaint or a lament, suffering, struggle, real life experiences. It meets life head on, no nonsense, often with sarcasm and with humor, a wisdom born from pain.
• borrowed from blues singing, making up the “lyrics on the fly”.

I’m goin’ down to de railroad, baby,
———————————-Lay ma head on de track.
I’m goin’ down to de railroad, babe,
———————————-Lay ma head on de track –
But if I see de train a-comin’,
—————————- I’m gonna jerk it back.
———————— Langston Hughes in The Big Sea 

Burn Out Blues by Judi Van Gorder

The sun on Sunday morning calls, come and play.
the morning’s sun calls, come out and play,
but first, I have a Sunday duty to pay.

But that sun sure tempts me to skip and stray,
yes I sure am tempted to skip and stray,
why am I bound to fit church in my day?

Hard part is, I believe it’s the right thing to do,
it’s hard, but believe it’s the right thing to do,
I’ve lived it, I’ve taught it and loved it too.

Still I don’t want to sit through a ritual mass,
no, don’t want to sit through a long boring mass,
would rather be sunning, bare toes in the grass>

I doddle and fiddle and arrive at mass late,
messing around, slip in the door late,
so I stand in the back and kneel on the slate.

The gospel is one that I don’t want to hear,
the news is something I don’t want to hear,
but I know the message is meant for my ear.

“Do you love me?” He asks, “then tend my flock”,
He asks it twice more, “then tend my flock”,
I’ve done that for years, Lord, we need to talk.

I’ll ponder His words and write out my thought, 
still pondering His word and writing my thought, 
there’s more in His message, more to the plot

So I’ve gone to church, and now have my day,
gone to church and He gave me my day,
but also a message I need to weigh.

Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

Related forms: Brevette, Blues Stanza, Culminating Verse, Diminishing Verse,Trio, Triplet

Triplet (Classic)

The Triplet has its roots in 16th century England. The classic triplet is a three line, mono-rhymed verse with meter at the discretion of the poet. It can be written as a stand alone poem or can be stanzaic, written using any number of triplets.

The word “triplet” is commonly interchanged with tercet. Since respected sources give definitions of both the triplet and the tercet that are exactly the same, similar and sometimes contradictory, I felt there should be a clearer separation of the two. One distinction I found unanimous was that authorities invariably used the term triplet when referring to a monorhymed three line stanza. Therefore, in order to be consistent and clear throughout this research, I use the term “tercet” whenever referring to any three line poem or stanza except when that poem or stanza is monorhymed, then I use “triplet”. It seems to me the best way to distinguish between the terms, although I could probably just say tercet is Italian and triplet is English for the same definition but then why in English would we use the word tercet at all?

John Dreyden, English poet and critic said of the use of the triplet, “they bound the sense”, I’ve read he used the stanza, writing a rhymed, iambic pentameter couplet followed by a rhyming Alexandrine line but have so far been unsuccessful in finding an example. The contemporary Blues Stanza would fall under the umbrella of the classic triplet.

A classic triplet is:
• a 3 line poem or stanza.
• monorhymed, aaa bbb.
• metered at the discretion of the poet. 

Upon Julia’s Clothes by Robert Herrick (1591-1674)
When as in silks my Julia goes,
Then, then, methinks, how sweetly flows
The liquefaction of her clothes.

Next, when I cast mine eyes, and see
That brave vibration, each way free,
O, how that glittering taketh me!

• Culminating Verse is a subgenre of the classic triplet. It is in reality simply a classic triplet using a type of word play, increasing the (number of) initial consonants of the rhyme word from line to line. eg. air / care / stare.

Smog by Judi Van Gorder
The thick LA air
gives me a care
when it stings my stare.

Diminishing Verse is also a subgenre of the classic triplet. It is a classic triplet using a type of word play that reduces the (number of) initial consonants of the rhyme word from line to line. eg. that / bat / at.

Found by Judi Van Gorder
I’m not all that,
can’t swing a bat,
but I know where I’m at.

Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

Related forms: Brevette, Blues Stanza, Culminating Verse, Diminishing Verse,Trio, Triplet

My example

Upon Julia’s Smock  (Parody of Upon Julia’s Clothes)

When wearing nothing but a smock,
And walking toward me with that walk
I know now’s not the time to talk.

© Lawrencealot 

Massed Transit (Culminating Verse)

When the thong compresses us
when we’re crowded on the bus
it’ still best that we not fuss.

(c) Lawrencealot

Gourmet (Diinishing Verse)

I’m pleased to see you cleared your plate.
I so enjoy a sated mate
who seldom cares what he just ate.

(c) Lawrencealot



• The Trio, is an invented form that I found at Poetry Base, attributed to Sol Magazine. It is a nonce triplet, meaning the form was created for a particular poem. No articles or punctuation are used and the poem has as few words as possible. The only example given is a classic triplet. This seems more like a word exercise to me than poetry. This is very similar to the Brevette. 
The Trio is:
○ a classic triplet, 3 mono-rhymed lines. However I think it would be just fine to break ranks and write an unrhymed tercet as long as the progression was clever.
○ written in as few words as possible with no articles or punctuation.
— (sorry)-jvg

Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

Related forms: Brevette, Blues Stanza, Culminating Verse, Diminishing Verse,Trio, Triplet

My examplerio



Pendrangle  is a form created by Penelope Allen aka  PenAllen on Allpoetry.
Stanzaic: Two or more of quatrain couplet pairs
Refrain:  The couplet is a refrain repeated throughout
Isosyllabic:  Hexameter (12 syllable lines)
Rhymed-   mono-rhyme throughout: aaaa BB cccc BB…
Example Poem
Objects of Art     (Pendrangle)
I’m fortunate residing in this time and place
for daily, if I wish I can watch horses race
across the plain or stand and graze with calming grace.
They’ve never pulled a load nor had to wear a trace.
Ascendancy of man, remarkable of course
was aided by domestication of the horse.
The spirit of the horse is recognized in art
in each and every age in which he’s played apart.
They’ve pulled our carriage our cannon and our cart.
They’ve captured man’s respect, and many young boy’s heart.
Ascendancy of man remarkable, of course
was aided by domestication of the horse.
In Nevada, they are allowed now to roam
protected in some areas once their natural home
where grasses, junipers, and sage have always grown.
And though they’re dancing free we feel that they’re our own.
Ascendancy of man remarkable, of course
was aided by domestication of the horse.
The V&T railroad now crosses their terrain
with stops to watch their beauty up above the plain.
They’re one delight of many, one sees from the train.
The horses drew me there, and I’  go back again.
Ascendancy of man remarkable, of course
was aided by domestication of the horse.
© Lawrencealot – January 1, 2014
 Visual Template