Sunday, September 06, 2009

Self-Invented Poetry Forms...

Michael Wells made a funny comment how I post so much more when I clean out my office closet and well, he's right! I just keep finding more and more interesting things...

Today, while cleaning I found my old notes from a class with Madeline DeFrees. I can't remember where I heard her talk, but she was talking about "Self-Invented Forms" and here are some she suggested if you're having trouble starting a poem.


Take 2 favorite words & write a poem where each word begins a stanza

Write a poem of all questions.

Write a poem with all slant rhymes (while/call, drench/finch)

Write a slideshow poem, each section opens with a different slide
1. Selma in a bathing suit

Write a poem that is one side of a telephone conversation

Write a poem where all lines end with a verb, adjective or noun


She said you could go on like this all day making up your own forms.

I once wrote a kind of faux-sonnet (I called it a "faunnet") where I used varations of the word "red/read" on every other line. It was closer to a ghazal though, but it had much of the sonnet element (14 lines, rhyme scheme) and it mentioned Shakespeare, so I leaned more towards sonnet than ghazal.

Have you ever made up a form? What was it? I'd love to hear from you. Please post your comments on what you wrote.

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PS. There will be an incredible interview with Madeline DeFrees with Anne McDuffie in the next issue of Crab Creek Review. I'll let you know when it's available. It's pretty wonderful.

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