Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Monday Poetry Stretch - Landay

Late again! I can't seem to get my act together this semester, so please forgive the late post.

The landay is an Afghani poetic form. It's described as "an oral and often anonymous scrap of song created by and for mostly illiterate people." Formally, a landay is composed of couplets, with 9 syllables in the first line and 13 in the second. Sometimes the couplets rhyme, but there is no requirement to do so.

You can learn more about the landay and read some fine examples in this Poetry Magazine feature.

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


  1. Hmmm--maybe it would be better in Afganhi? Feels a bit as if I am limping along.

    Scattered Thoughts About Your Death

    Today the telephone rang three times.
    It was not you, so long underground. It was just chimes.

    In the Fall each still leaf on the ground
    Reminds me of you who are now bloodless, without sound.

    The winter will cover your gravesite.
    There is a purity about it, a coldness, white.

    Spring will not resurrect, nor give life.
    I'll remain solo, single, widow, no longer wife.

    ©2016 Jane Yolen all rights reserved

  2. Tricia,
    I strongly urge your readers and contributors to read the recommended feature article from Poetry Magazine. It is an arrestingly beautiful piece; stunning in scope, heartbreaking in depth. The author's determined efforts to retrieve the material comprise an adventure of courage and danger. Photographs by Seamus Murphy are breathtaking...on the whole the read will be time well spent. j

    1. Yes, it is an amazing piece. I do hope readers follow the link.

  3. Gone
    When she went she took the kids along.
    Left black mold and shards of glossy shower tile behind.

    When she went she cleaned the pantry bare.
    Left it vacant as his eyes, near-set and early shrunk.

    When she went she emptied every drawer.
    Left them hollow as his sunken cheeks; teeth clenched to grit.

    When she went she packed her bags that night.
    Left the truth behind her in the sheets where they’d made love.

    When she went she took frost on her tongue,
    Left the bite of icy bitterness to do its worst.

    When she went she chose to spurn his pleas.
    Left his keening torment to the providence of God.

    When she drove his truck across the yard
    she left ruts so muddy-deep they’ll never fill again.

    © 2016 Judith Robinson all rights reserved.

    1. WOW---just WOW, Judith.

    2. Thanks, Jane. That means the world to me. j