Monday, February 02, 2015

Monday Poetry Stretch - Quatern

Since I'm hooked on forms these days, I've been looking for something new to try. For this one I turned to Spinning Through the Universe: A Novel in Poems from Room 214 by Helen Frost. Here's how she describes the quatern in the back matter on forms.
You can read more about the quatern and see some examples at Writer's Digest and Shadow Poetry.

I hope you'll join me this week in writing a quatern. Please share a link to your poem or the poem itself in the comments.


  1. For Betzy, who left 2 days ago:


    Cross the border backwards
    because my mother is dying.
    My green card came yesterday
    in the mail and she’s still alive.

    I take the girls and hurry—we
    cross the border backwards.
    Suitcases, birth certificates,
    stroller, my sisters are waiting

    in Mexico City, my mother
    is waiting, cancer pushing her to
    cross the border backwards,
    the border she came over

    70 years ago, before doctors
    took a look at her papers
    and waved her onwards to
    cross the border backwards.

    —Kate Coombs, 2015
    all rights reserved

  2. That was a fun. rigorous exercise.


    No matter what I do
    She doesn’t match my feelings,
    I need her heart to merge with mine,
    Her spirit has been force field.

    Trust me, I have tried, yet
    No matter what I do:
    Letters, flowers, dinner, drinks
    I get a smile or thank you.

    For her, it’s a friendship,
    Pleasant talks, goodbye hugs,
    No matter what I do
    She scared to take it deeper.

    I wish she’d take a chance
    To see I am her lover,
    It doesn’t seem to register
    No matter what I do.

    (c) Charles Waters 2015 all rights reserved.