Tricky Stuff: Formal Poems

I am venturing out into the world of formal poetry. If you have been keeping up with the blog, several sonnets have appeared lately. But, I have also studied some more complicated forms that I have wanted to challenge myself with. I love free verse…but I myself never considered it free or without cadence. I love sound to much! Consonance, alliteration, meter, rhyme, dissonance. I love music, so naturally I love to hear words as they breathed out. Formal poetry takes discipline and time, but the sounds carved out of the moment they try and capture can be breathtaking. So here are two formal poems of older styles that don’t get used as often anymore. There of course will be more to come. These Poems are centered in repetition, which can either be dull, or used in such a way that sparks new meaning each time a phrase is repeated…I hope I accomplished the latter task. Enjoy.

First, the Triolet:

 

At Sunset

            By Paul Tomes

 

As I watch the Sun set

and curl up on a fallen forest log,

I feel God, His heart’s regret,

as I watch the Sun set

and sing a song of love’s Lament

into the misty moonlight fog,

as I watch the Son set

and curl upon a fallen forest log.

 

Second, the Villanelle:

 

Diplegia

By Paul Tomes

 

Into now unbroken glass the lethal liquid spills.

C’est la vie, sweet memory,

And all the past it stills.

 

Fired from her cubicle so she starts popping pills.

Her icy stare from the couch—such a tragedy,

Into now unbroken glass the lethal liquid spills.

 

Slanders slurred, vile words, all my dreams she kills.

My younger years, youthful days, she stains everything—

And all the past it stills.

 

The past she never buried? My baby sister’s shrills.

Sliding out her scaly lips, forever haunting me.

Into now unbroken glass the lethal liquid spills.

 

The vacant eyes of one to many, sending spinal chills,

Closing now, deadly glare, posing not another query—

And all the past it stills.

 

Now I stumble in the dark to drain the glass she fills,

To avoid the hint of her in me, empty myself of fury.

Into now unbroken glass the lethal liquid spills

—and all the past it stills.

 

I welcome your comments.

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