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Passions in Poetry

My first (short) poem in trochaic tetrameter(I think)

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freeand2sexy
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0 posted 02-16-2009 10:24 PM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to Submit your Poem to Passions   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

I think this is in trochaic tetrameter but i'm probably wrong. I'm also pretty sure i mest up somewhere. This just practice, so this is probably really bad and not at all understandable. Anyways, here it is.

Fate, destiny, wait for bright love,
Before patience dims from light of,
Beats that take your breath to silence,
Waiting alone for love's presence.



With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.
© Copyright 2009 Christine Juarez - All Rights Reserved
Falling rain
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1 posted 02-17-2009 08:23 AM       View Profile for Falling rain   Email Falling rain   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Falling rain's Home Page   View IP for Falling rain

I tried reading using the meter and everything but I think I might be reading it wrong. How many is there in a trochaic tetrameter?

-Zach

When I see your smile, and I know itís not for me, thatís when Iíll miss you.

GothicCherry
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2 posted 02-17-2009 08:43 AM       View Profile for GothicCherry   Email GothicCherry   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for GothicCherry

I've been attempting it as well. So far my only outcome has been a huge head-ache.
Falling rain
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3 posted 02-17-2009 08:47 AM       View Profile for Falling rain   Email Falling rain   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Falling rain's Home Page   View IP for Falling rain

Yeah same here. Hey Michaela! Lets break out the aspirin and try again eh? hehe.  

When I see your smile, and I know itís not for me, thatís when Iíll miss you.

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4 posted 02-17-2009 08:52 AM       View Profile for GothicCherry   Email GothicCherry   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for GothicCherry

Yeah, let's take another shot at it. Goodluck!!!
freeand2sexy
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5 posted 02-17-2009 11:46 AM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

Trochee:  stressed-unstressed

Tetrameter:  four feet per line.

So my poem should be like this in each line, well, if i did it right

S u / S u / S u / S u

Oh man now i got a headache, too, i think i just realized where i messed up, i guess its back to the drawing board, again.


With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.
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6 posted 02-17-2009 03:33 PM       View Profile for Falling rain   Email Falling rain   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Falling rain's Home Page   View IP for Falling rain

HaHa.. I'll go make coffee. This meter thing is gonna take a while and I got all night. lol

-Zach

When I see your smile, and I know itís not for me, thatís when Iíll miss you.

freeand2sexy
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7 posted 02-17-2009 04:24 PM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

Tell me about it! sadly its going to take more than one night.

With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.

moonbeam
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8 posted 02-17-2009 06:26 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Christine

Only just seen this and unfortunately out of time tonight, but it's nice to see someone making an effort to learn about meter. Seen your post in CA as well, which I'll try to get to tomorrow too.

In the meantime try listening to the stress patterns of words.

When you say the words: "city", "library", "poem", "Hiawatha" what syllables do you naturally stress?

For instance I stress Hiawatha as follows:

HI a WATH a  - the uppercase is for the stressed syllables and the lower for the unstressed.  Try it with the other words I mentioned.

Then take your poem:

"Fate, destiny, wait for bright love,
Before patience dims from light of,
Beats that take your breath to silence,
Waiting alone for love's presence."

Try going through the poem showing the stress patterns with uppercase and lower case notation.  This is called scanning a poem.

The first line for instance probably scans as follows:

FATE, DES tin y, WAIT for BRIGHT love,

(although "love" could possibly be stressed too)

Don't worry too much about fancy names (iambs, trochees, anapests etc) of metric feet at this stage; just concentrate on becoming familiar with the way words and phrases are naturally stressed.  

I'll see if I can help some more tomorrow.
freeand2sexy
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9 posted 02-17-2009 07:41 PM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

Yeah, I realized that I messsed up on the first line this morning. I guess I thought it was des TIN y and then this morning I realized that it actually was DES tin y.

Thank you so much for your help, I appreciate it more than you know.

And I'll try not to worry about the fancy names as you put it, but they are all in my head, and I actually know what they all mean. You see I've been learning for the past month (and am still learning)all about poetry,(at least as much as I can)before putting it all into my own poetry, so though I won't worry it's still going to be in the back of my a head.

Oh, and I'm not the only one making an effort to learn meter, my friends Zach(Falling rain) and Michaela(GothicCherry) are as well.


With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.
moonbeam
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10 posted 02-18-2009 05:07 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Hi Christine, Zach and Michaela

The heart of English rhythms is "stress"  - the emphasis placed on syllables in the spoken word.  Stress is also the building block of "meter".

As soon as you start talking about meter in poetry people will start throwing terms such as iambic pentameter, anapaestic dimeter and trochaic hexameter at you.  These terms are borrowed from Greek and Latin linguists and do not fit well with the rhythms of modern spoken English.  Unfortunately you can't ignore them totally even today, because a lot of formal poetry is still referenced back to those terms.  

For instance you will be told that a sonnet is written in "iambic pentameter".  And here is wikipedia's description of Sapphic metre:

"The Sapphic stanza, named after Sappho, is an Aeolic verse form spanning four lines (more properly three, in the poetry of Sappho and Alcaeus, where there is no word-end before the final Adonean).

The form is two hendecasyllabic verses, and a third verse beginning the same way and continuing with five additional syllables (given as the stanza's fourth verse in ancient and modern editions, and known as the Adonic or adonean line)."

Hopefully that will have totally confused you, because as I said before, one of the best ways to get yourself confused and turned off to learning about poetic rhythm and meter is to worry about reproducing poetic lines which "follow" these archaic terms.

I am not saying that it is not interesting, or even necessary, to know about them a bit later.

BUT when you are starting out, try to forget them and just concentrate of HEARING the sound and stress patterns of words and phrases.

So first off I need to see how you are handling this idea of stress patterns.  Are you hearing them.  And if you are, can you scan a few lines correctly.

To start with then lets have a discussion about a few lines of poetry and see if you can scan them for their stress patterns.  Try these:

Polly put the kettle on

And summer's lease hath all too short a date

Dark behind it rose the forest

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary

My! what a spread for the friends of Myfanwy

And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea

Ok, if you post your ideas on the stress patterns in those lines here in this thread it would be good.  Use the notation of uppercase for stressed and lowercase for unstressed syllables, as in the following example:

the LIGHT of HEAV en SHINES in EV ery PLACE

Don't worry about naming the meter or arranging into feet or anything like that.  Just scan the lines above as I have done.

M
freeand2sexy
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11 posted 02-18-2009 11:41 AM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

Well, I tried but I'm sure I mest up somewhere. I think its starting to get easier


PO lly put the KET tle on

And SUM mer's LEASE hath ALL too SHORT a DATE

DARK be HIND it ROSE the FOR est

ONCE up ON a MID night DREAR y, WHILE i PON dered WEAK and WEAR y

MY! what a SPREAD for the FRIENDS of My FAN wy

And the SHEEN of their SPEARS was like STARS on the SEA


With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.
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12 posted 02-18-2009 12:38 PM       View Profile for Falling rain   Email Falling rain   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Falling rain's Home Page   View IP for Falling rain

*shrugs* Well here goes nothing haha.
POllY pUT the KETtle on

And SummER's lEAse HAth all too SHorT a dATE

DARK bEhInd it ROSE the forEST

Once UPON a MIdnIGHt dreary (not sure on that word), whILE I PONdeRed weak and wearY

MY! WHAT a SPread for the FRiENDs of Myfanwy (<-- not sure on that either)

And the shEEN of thEIR spEARS was like stARS on the sEA

Okay so I prolly got this all wrong. I have a strong feeling I got the whole stress messed up.

-Zach

When I see your smile, and I know itís not for me, thatís when Iíll miss you.

freeand2sexy
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13 posted 02-18-2009 12:52 PM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

Wait I'm confusing myself

is it

PO lly put the KET tle on

or

PO lly PUT the KET tle ON

At first I thought it was the first one but now I think it could be the second one.

Help!


With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.
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14 posted 02-18-2009 12:58 PM       View Profile for Falling rain   Email Falling rain   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Falling rain's Home Page   View IP for Falling rain

Okay when ever I say that out loud I say it fast. So it would be the second option. But if I say it slowly and take time to say it correctly it sounds like the first option you picked. I think it varies between how its pronounced. Does that make any sense?

-Zach

When I see your smile, and I know itís not for me, thatís when Iíll miss you.

freeand2sexy
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15 posted 02-18-2009 01:01 PM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

uhhhhh, kinda, I don't know, well its 10am in Cali, and I don't completely wake up til 12pm, so it could make sense I'm just not sure of it yet. lol

With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.

moonbeam
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16 posted 02-18-2009 03:56 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Just a quickie.

Very good indeed Christine. Apart from Polly who you seem to be struggling with you were spot on perfect.

Now can you have a go at scanning your poem in this thread using the same notation?

I scan:

POLL y PUT the KETT le ON

Which is what you arrived at in the end.

Zach

Good shot, but we just need to clarify the way you are scanning - especially with reference to syllables.  I'll be back later with some thoughts for you.

M
freeand2sexy
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17 posted 02-18-2009 04:40 PM       View Profile for freeand2sexy   Email freeand2sexy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit freeand2sexy's Home Page   View IP for freeand2sexy

Now that I look at my poem in this thread again, I can see that I messed up in every stanza but one.
I think it scans like this, but please correct me if I'm wrong

FATE, DES tin y, WAIT for BRIGHT love,
Be FORE PA tience DIMS from LIGHT of,
BEATS that TAKE your BREATH to SI lence,
WAIT ing a LONE for love's PRE sence.

The word love I guess could go either way.

I feel that this poem can't be fixed (well maybe I'm too lazy to try)

But I wrote another short poem in iambic tetrameter(sorry for the fancy name) that is similar to the first

My fate is waiting, wanting love
Before my patience dims of  beats
That takes my breath and adds this lust,
A yearning , longing, thirst it needs

It should scan like this

My FATE is WAIT ing, WANT ing LOVE
Be FORE my PA tience DIMS of  BEATS
That TAKES my BREATH and ADDS this LUST,
A YEARN ing , LONG ing, THIRST it NEEDS

I hope I did it right this time and please pay little to no attention to the content of the poem.


With God I am happy; sadness has no say in my life.
moonbeam
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18 posted 02-18-2009 05:37 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Christine and Zach

I just used up my time tonight checking out Christine's poem in CA, so I'm sorry - I'll try and get back to you on this in the morning (it's 10.36 pm here).

What you did looks good though Christine.

Laters

M
GothicCherry
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19 posted 02-18-2009 05:47 PM       View Profile for GothicCherry   Email GothicCherry   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for GothicCherry

I am not very good at this, but I went over this final one you posted many times and it seems to be stressed right to me.

Moonbeam-
     I went over the lines you posted and I got it nearly right. I didn't have enough time to post what I believed was correct. I took a glance at Christine's and noticed a few places where I'd messed up, besides that this is starting to sink in. Thanks for helping us all out.

Zach-
     Lord bless the people who master writing in such complex ways. Lol...
moonbeam
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20 posted 02-19-2009 05:28 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Well Christine you nailed it I think.  Both the scanning of your original poem and that of the new iambic version.

I see from your post in CA that you are interested primarily in writing formal poetry.  If you can get it from the library there is a very easily readable book by Stephen Fry:
http://www.amazon.com/Ode-Less-Travelled-Unlocking-Within/dp/009179661X

Which deals exclusively with form poetry in all its wonderful manifestations.

A word of caution though.  Being able to write in traditional forms such as terza rima, villanelles, ballads, and sonnets as you mentioned is a wonderful skill and very satisfying, but really at your level of skill, where you clearly understand and can "hear" stress patterns, it is now merely a matter of knowing the forms and fitting in the appropriate stresses and rhyming patterns.  

Have you ever thought about WHY people might want to read your poetry though?

I assure you that no-one is going to be interested in reading your writing merely because it happens to be a villanelle or a sonnet.  It all depends upon why you want to write.  If you are just doing it for your own satisfaction then no problem - learn the forms and off you go!  

But interesting poetry isn't about fitting a stress pattern into an ancient form.  It speaks to life love death the seasons war etc, all the things that matter to humans.  And if you want to learn to write in the formal styles you've mentioned AND write good poetry then, like mastering all worthwhile things, you need to practice practice practice.  In fact you need to become so absolutely familiar with meter and unforced rhyme that it becomes second nature - rather like the way you forget about the controls of a car when you drive.

My recommendation (from personal experience) is that as well as playing around with the various forms if you like, you also get down to some serious writing of blank verse.  Beginners often dive right into writing villanelles, sonnets or whatever, and don't realise just how hard it is to write a good formal poem AND make good sense!  One of the biggest distractions for beginners setting out to master meter and the various forms is the need to simultaneously think about:

1 Writing something worthwhile
2 Following the correct form and metrical pattern
3 Making unforced end rhymes

Writing loads and loads of stuff in blank verse as practice enables you to remove perhaps the most distracting element - the need to end rhyme.  Blank verse is simply 10 syllables per line in "da DUM da DUM" stress pattern - (iambic pentameter if you wish), but without any end rhyme.  Milton in Paradise lost for instance used it:

" From what highth fal'n, so much the stronger provd
    He with his Thunder: and till then who knew
    The force of those dire Arms? yet not for those
    Nor what the Potent Victor in his rage
    Can else inflict do I repent or change,
    Though chang'd in outward lustre; that fixt mind
    And high disdain, from sence of injur'd merit,
    That with the mightiest rais'd me to contend,
    And to the fierce contention brought along
    Innumerable force of Spirits arm'd
    That durst dislike his reign, and me preferring,
    His utmost power with adverse power oppos'd
    In dubious Battel on the Plains of Heav'n,
    And shook his throne. What though the field be lost?"

(Some lines have "female" endings (unstressed last syllable as in "and me preferring"), thus have 11 syllables, a permitted variation of blank verse).

You may not like blank verse as you said in CA but it really is imo a necessary stepping stone towards an ability to write good formal poetry.  At first you may find you struggle just to keep the iambic pattern using one and two syllable words, but after a while you should start to incorporate some multi-syllable words and experiment with enjambment and trochaic variations.  Finally when the meter is second nature you will hopefully begin to write stuff that makes sense and then go on to writing real poetry with originality and flair.  Only when you can do that expertly in blank verse should you move on to trying to write serious rhyming poetry, and even then I recommend to start with one on the easier forms.  Simple quatrains in iambic pentameter would be a good start like this from Thomas Gray's "Elegy Written in a Country Church-yard":

   "The Curfew tolls the knell of parting day,
    The lowing herd wind slowly o'er the lea,
    The plowman homeward plods his weary way,
    And leaves the world to darkness and to me."

Then perhaps move on to try a Shakespearean sonnet.  

But for now if you want to I'd love to see you write 50 lines of blank verse and post in this forum or CA!

Good luck.

M

PS Incidentally Christine I see from your post in CA that you say that you hate free verse.  Try not to hate it! You see even free verse is grounded in the deeply embedded rhythms of language and the patterning (stress patterns) of sounds.  Good free verse can be just as lyrical and beautiful as end rhymed form poetry.  While it may not at first sight to have any meter, more often than not pleasing free verse establishes patterns with metrical fragments, internal rhymes, and repeating rhythms for example.  But again, good free verse is hard to write, and the best poets will have a strong grounding in metrical verse and be completely coversant with the manipulation of stress patterns. You have to know the rules in order to break them!
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21 posted 02-19-2009 05:29 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Zach

Forgive me if this sounds patronising but I am not clear as to whether you are totally comfortable with identifying "syllables", and this ability is very necessary before you can move on to looking at stress patterns.  For as each syllable in the English language has a certain level of emphasis or stress you obviously need to be able to identify the syllables before you can decide what stress they should have.

The word:
Constantinople has 5 syllables.  Con   stan   tin   o   ple

Can you give me the number of syllables in each of the following words, and identify the syllables in the same way as I have done above with spaces:

angel

virus

paradise

integer

assimilate

variation

astronomical

hippopotamus

supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

Good luck!

M
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22 posted 02-19-2009 05:38 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

You're welcome Michaela.
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23 posted 02-19-2009 07:36 AM       View Profile for Falling rain   Email Falling rain   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Falling rain's Home Page   View IP for Falling rain

angel (an-gel) 2

virus (vi-rus) 2

paradise (pa-ra-dise) 3

integer (in-te-ger) 3

assimilate (a-ssim-i-late) 4

variation (var-ri-a-tion) 4

astronomical (as-tro-nom-i-cal) 5

hippopotamus (hip-po-pot-tu-amus)5

supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

(su-per-cal-i-fra-gil-list-tic-ex-pi-ali-do-ci-ous) 14


I know what they are moonbeam. I was just having a bad day yesterday to concentrate. So I messed up a lot. I wrote 3 poems using syllable patterns. If you want you can check the out and see how well I actually do with syllables.

-Zach  

When I see your smile, and I know itís not for me, thatís when Iíll miss you.

moonbeam
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24 posted 02-19-2009 10:30 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

That's cool Zach.  Hope you didn't mind me checking.  

You need to check out the last one again though!  A couple of errors there.

Now for the more difficult part!  Can you scan each word using the uppercase lowercase notation?  I'll do the first one (coz it's easy, heh):

angel (an-gel) 2    AN  gel

virus (vi-rus) 2

paradise (pa-ra-dise) 3

integer (in-te-ger) 3

assimilate (a-ssim-i-late) 4

variation (var-ri-a-tion) 4

astronomical (as-tro-nom-i-cal) 5

hippopotamus (hip-po-pot-tu-amus)5

supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

(su-per-cal-i-fra-gil-list-tic-ex-pi-ali-do-ci-ous) 14

One thing to be aware of is that I'm English and we stress certain words differently to Americans - so if we disagree on something that seems obvious then that might be the explanation.

Best.

M
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