Feb 25, 2010

Retourne

Sorry this post is so late. Just another case of my poor organizational skills coming into play. :-)

Here’s a form that’s perfect for all you non-rhymers out there.

Retournes can, but do not have to rhyme.

Like so many other French forms, the Retourne is all about repetition. It contains four quatrains (four-line stanzas), and each line has eight syllables.

Now for the fun part. The second line of the first stanza becomes the first line of the second stanza. The third line of the first stanza becomes the first line of the fourth stanza. The fourth line of the first stanza becomes the first line of the fourth stanza. And remember, it does not have to rhyme, but each line should be eight syllables.

I’m actually surprised this form isn’t more popular, it’s pretty easy to do. I tried doing some research into its history, but I came up empty. Pretty much all I could find was what I told you above.

So, let’s get to my example:

The Westerly Wind

A westerly wind calls to me,
Bringing me tales from distant shores
Winding its way along the path
Tempting me to follow along.

Bringing me tales from distant shores
The westerly wind speaks to me,
Filling me with a restlessness;
Desires and longings without name

Winding its way along the path,
The westerly wind skims the trees,
Showing me which way to follow
Then racing away on other quests.

Tempting me to follow along,
The westerly wind challenges me
To take a step into the unknown.
One day soon I might just follow.

2 comments:

Erica said...

I'm surprised it's not more popular too! Nice job with it! I'm not a rhyming poet myself :o)

C R Ward said...

LOL I picked this form with you in mind! :-)