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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Naporimo Day Fifteen: A Wrinkled, Decrepit Terza Rima

I found there is more than one site suggesting napowrimo challenges for this year.
One of them suggested writing a 'poetic challenge' for the sixteenth and  poem about hands for the seventeenth days.  I'd done one for hands a couple of years ago, perhaps even before (gasp) napowrimo,
I'll keep the former challenge in mind for  a future 'write.'
For now, 'wishing you a happy day...may the sun shine and skies turn blue...

 Today's poetic challenge is to ' a poem in terza rima, a form invented by Dante, and used in The Divine Comedy. It consists of three-line stanzas, with a “chained” rhyme scheme. The first stanza is ABA, the second is BCB, the third is CDC, and so on. No particular meter is necessary, but English poets have tended to default to iambic pentameter (iambic pentameter is like the Microsoft Windows of English poetry). One common way of ending a terza rima poem is with a single line standing on its own, rhyming with the middle line of the preceding three-line stanza."
I'll try to fit some of this morning's thoughts into terza rima form. That's sure to be an exercise for the brain! (Figuring out how my blog page 'reads' information about highlighting and line spacing is an exercise in itself.  The following is intended to print uniformly...!)

Watch Who You're Talking About!

Who're you calling old and wrinkled and decrepit?
You should be old enough to know better.
Oh, I'm old, I'll grant it, older than you, I'll bet it.

Old enough to know talk like that is a fetter.
That faces become twisted by too many a sneer.
I'm proud of every one of my wrinkles. Better

for having weathered so many seasons here,
crows feet crowding, radiating from my eyes,
and laugh lines drawn by smiling at somebody dear.

So you think I"m decrepit? Some day, I surmise,
when I've moved on to a much better place,
You'll look in the mirror, look into your eyes.

You will stop taking back, you will wish for grace.

You'll talk to yourself, but it will be too late.
What you've said or intended will be writ on your face,

Surprise!                                   --Shirley Smith Franklin

(Alas, the muse had flown by the time I got to the third and fourth revisions of this theme, but I slogged through for the sake of practicing the form.  Practice makes perfect, right?  That's one of the benefits of Napowrimo...holding me to the discipline of reading, writing, and learning poetry daily, like it or not!)

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