Retournello: Created by Flozari Rockwood
Any number of quatrains.
Syllabic Count: 4-6-8-4
Rhyme Scheme: a-b-b-a c-d-d-c e-f-f-e etc.

Doomsday: May 21, 2011

4a Some say Doomsday
6b earthquake cracks open graves.
8b Only the Christian dead God saves.
4a The rest Earth’s prey.
4c Believers rise–
6d the living and the dead,
8d rest in torment is what is said.
4c Fill crowded skies?
4e To date Rapture
6f some claim Bible reckons
8f October end of world beckons.
4e Left to nature.
4g We’ll wait and see
6h this is just another guess.
8h Time will tell if this time it’s yes–
4g this prophesy
My Thanks to Linda Varsell Smith for her contributions above.

My example

Our Parrot (Form: Retournello)

A neon green
and neon carrot bird
wears other colors quite absurd.
Isn’t it keen?

© Lawrencealot – January 13, 2015

Written for contest, exactly 15 words.

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The Questrain is a form invented by Michelle Campbell, writing on as Mrs Campbell

Questrain is a four line stanza with abab rhyme scheme and a 9/7/8/6 syllable count.
The first three lines introduce a topic and the last line asks a question.

My body I bestow on my man
in faithfulness I profess
starting when our marriage began.
How modest is your dress?
by Mrs Campbell
A person’s mind is a battle field
for as you think, so you do.
It’s there to temptations you’ll yield.
Who are you listening to?
by Mrs Campbell

Pasted from

Specifications restated
The Questrain is:
A 4 line poem.
Syllabic: 9/8/7/6
Rhymed: abab
Formulaic: The first three lines introduce a topic and the last line asks a question.

It may be centered or not.

My example

Choice (Form: Questrain)

We’ve had the choice since the beginning.
Churches need not tell us so –
what is good and what is sinning.
Don’t we already know?

© Lawrencealot – January 9, 2015

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Rannaicheacht Mhor Gairit

Rannaicheacht Mhor Gairit (great versification with “clipped” or shortened line) is:
• written in any number of quatrains.
• syllabic 3-7-7-7.
• alliterated, 2 word alliteration in each line.
• rhymed, rhyme scheme aaba ccdc etc.
• if L3 ends in a 2 syllable word, aicill rhyme is employed and the end word of L3 rhymes internally in L4.

x x a
x x x x x x a
x x x x x (x b)
x x b x x x a

x x c
x x x x x x c
x x x x x (x d)
x x d x x x c
Squatters by Barbara Hartman
Prairie dogs
carry on shrill dialogues
outside apartment housing
— grumpy, grousing demagogues.
They moved in
last summer with all their kin,
dug tunnels in our pasture
— cool, cocksure, they always win.
All agog,
hungry rodents eat like hogs,
while poor farmers rue the day
God created prairie dogs.
Pasted from
My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.

My example
Puppy Poop (Rannaicheacht Mhor Gairit)
Doggy doo
is mom-speak for piles of poo.
Dad deems it be done outside.
Dignified dogs take that view.
Big is bad
when scooping poop, so said dad.
The pups chew shoes I confess.
Their scat’s less and that’s not sad.
© Lawrencealot – January 8, 2015
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Rannaicheacht Mhor Gairit

Plane 9/11

• The Plane 9/11 is an invented form created by John W Henson. Obviously it is meant as a memorial to September 11, 2001, the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon and hijacking of Flight 93.

The Plane 9/11 is:
○ stanzaic, written with a 9 line stanza, a tercet, a 9 line stanza and a single line, in that order.
○ syllabic, 1-1-2-2-2-2-2-2-2 11-11-11 2-2-2-2-2-2-2-2-1 11,
○ rhymed, abbccddee ffg hhiijjkka g.

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

A shape poetry form that makes no sense unless centered on the page


My example

Prescribed Insanity (Form: Plane 911)

that thought
on ends
not of
this life,
cause strife

and gain stature among their insane brothers
who deem virgins accrue from killing others,
(the words of one warped, persuasive lunatic.)

If you
can view
such choice
as voice
of He
who be
I deem

your life’s a waste of oxygen, and you’re sick.
Lawrencealot – January 7, 2015

Pie Quebrado

Pie Quebrado: Spanish-broken foot. The Broken footed couplet is from 14th
century. Often used in the Copla. Often follows an octosyllabic or 8 syllable couplet.
Two Stanzaic forms:
1. A couplet of two 8 syllable lines followed by a tail, a 4 syllable line.
2. A couplet made of 8 syllable line followed by 4 syllable line.

From a Child a Garden of Verses

I was a rainbow-eyed child.
My imagination ran wild.
happy and free

Mind raced like a motorcycle.
from when I rode a tricycle
rode skillfully.

No ballerina. I liked tap
I talked in rhyme in finger snap

Words and images came to dance
giving poems and novels a chance

From when I could write I wrote reams
scribbling, drawing youthful dreams

Words bloomed like hyacinths, the scope
a cosmic garden filled with star hope
My Thanks to Linda Varsell Smith for her contributions above.

My example

Game’s On (Form: Pie Quebrado)

A woman needn’t even try
too hard to catch a fellow’s eye.
and then he’s caught.

Should she be merely fishing guy,
she’ll reel you in and drain you dry;
of all you’ve got.

Just knowing that is not enough
your hormones can’t resist that stuff;
you’ll want to play.

So play you will. Enjoy the thrill!
Remember still she is the shill
and you’re the prey.

© Lawrencealot – January 6, 2015

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Pie Quebrado

Parallelogram de Crystalline

• Parallelogram de Crystalline is an invented verse form with a thematic focus. The subject is a lover and the lover should be described through images of nature. It was introduced by Karan Naidu. The Parallelogram de Crystalline is:
○ a poem in 12 lines, made up of 4 tercets.
○ syllabic 3-6-9 syllables per line for each tercet.
○ unrhymed.

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

My example

My Love Awaits

My Love Awaits (Form: Parallelogram de Crystalline)

Her dark eyes
beckoned to me like an
unlit cave needing exploration.
lips accented by tongue’s
moisture were an opening flower.
The hills and
valleys of my homeland
wished their contours as pleasing as hers.
They whisper
on the evening breezes,
“Chase not follies; what awaits is life.”

© Lawrencealot – January 2, 2015

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Parallelogra de Crystalline

Octet Poetry Form

• Octet is an invented form introduced by Dr. Laura Andersson. It is simply a diminishing octave.

• The Octet is:
○ an octastich, a poem in 8 lines.
○ syllabic, 8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 syllables per line.
○ unrhymed.
○ variable and can be written as a mirror or can be reversed.

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



My example


BCS Inaugral Season (Form:Octet)

BCS Inaugral Season 

I’ve been waiting for tomorrow

and tomorrow’s almost here.

Tomorrow the college

B C S football

playoffs begin!

Rest assured

no bet’s



© Lawrencealot – Dec 31, 2014


Markette: Created by Michael Degenhardt.
Rhymed Quatrains.

Syllable Count: 11/10/9/5
Rhyme Scheme: aaab cccd ddde fffe

No Place to Call Home

Partners Place –Housing First: An initiative to provide permanent housing
for chronically homeless persons

a11 In our town homeless people live under bridge.
a10 They camp out by railroad tracks or on a ridge.
a9 Some people care, try to help abridge
b5 gaps in services.
c11 The chronically ill, addicted, jobless,
c10 poverty, life situation painful mess–
c9 some folks try to raise our consciousness
d5 and want to make dent.
d11 Shelter, a place to call home, they will pay rent–
d10 percentage of income from government,
d9 coordinate needs as seen evident.
e5 working together.

f11 Grants, donations, they have built a safe, new place–
f10 apartments where residents interface,
f9 live with others, meet staff at own pace–
e5 safe from the weather.
My Thanks to Linda Varsell Smith for her contributions above.

My example

For a Happy Next Year (Form: Markette)

This very troubled year will certainly end
I hope the best for you next year, my friend.
We can’t tell what the next might portend;
may yours be joyful.

Sub-cultures rising up and promising strife
give little care how they affect your life.
agendas they hold make discord rife.
Practice brotherhood.

Though agitators provoke and relish hate,
if we respond we make their traction great.
So stay with those you appreciate.
Stay well and happy.

Avoid the fools who pander harsh foolishness.
No confront is going to solve this mess.
We need Hellos more and “Hell no’s” less.
Accumulate friends.

© Lawrencealot – December 29, 2014

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Mistress Bradstreet Stanza

Mistress Bradstreet Stanza is a stanzaic verse attributed to American poet John Berryman (1914-1972) patterned after the frame of his 57 stanza poem Homage to Mistress Bradstreet which he said was developed after a life time of studying Yeats.

The Mistress Bradstreet Stanza is:
• stanzaic, written in any number of octaves.
• accentual verse, composed with 5-5-3-4-5-5-3-6 stresses per line.
• rhymed, rhyme scheme abcbddba, the a and d rhymes are a constant although occasionally the rhyme changes to abcbddca. 

Homage to Mistress Bradstreet by John Berryman (1st 3 stanzas) 

The Governor your husband lived so long
moved you not, restless, waiting for him? Still,
you were a patient woman.—
I seem to see you pause here still:
Sylvester, Quarles, in moments odd you pored
before a fire at, bright eyes on the Lord,
all the children still.
‘Simon …’ Simon will listen while you read a Song.

[2] Outside the New World winters in grand dark
white air lashing high thro’ the virgin stands
foxes down foxholes sigh,
surely the English heart quails, stunned.
I doubt if Simon than this blast, that sea,
spares from his rigour for your poetry
more. We are on each other’s hands
who care. Both of our worlds unhanded us. Lie stark,

[3] thy eyes look to me mild. Out of maize & air
your body’s made, and moves. I summon, see,
from the centuries it.
I think you won’t stay. How do we
linger, diminished, in our lovers’ air,
implausibly visible, to whom, a year,
years, over interims; or not;
to a long stranger; or not; shimmer & disappear.

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

Tarnish (Form: Mistress Bradstreet Stanza)

In retrospect will history decide
that Hillary achieved her life-time goal
ascending to a stage
where she could play a noted role?
What cost, ignoring Clinton’s frequent trysts?
(His charm and force few maidens could resist.)
She wore the martyr role,
and seemed to benefit by standing by his side.

His faults his party clearly could abide
and character was deemed a price too high.
Hillary could not be blamed.
Yet global standards must apply.
She’ll likely never rise to stand a midst
the Goldas and the Thatchers who were kissed
with conviction noted and untamed.
Most likely a nod to greatness will be denied.

© Lawrencealot – December 29, 2014

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Mistress Bradstreet  Stanza


Laurette: Created by Etta Caldwell Harris. 28 syllables. 6 lines.
Syllable Count: 4-4-6-4-4-6 Rhyme Scheme: a-b-c-d-e-c

All Souls Eve Traffic Jam

4a Angels confront
4b more witch traffic.
6c Brooms, wings sweep breezily..
4d Airways get clogged.
4e Hot air breath steams
6c fog and tempers break free.

End of School Flash Dance

After Field Day
students flash dance.
Gym coach leads them to sweat.
Surprise teachers.
Then teachers dance.
Surprise not done yet.
My Thanks to Linda Varsell Smith for her contributions above.

My example
Brief, Quick, Easy (Form: Laurette)

Should you want to
avoid meter,
thought, and very much rhyme,
give this form a
a try; I know
it won’t take up much time.

© Lawrencealot – December 27, 2014

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