Friday, February 03, 2017

Poetry Sisters Write Villanelles

This month the poetry gang wrote villanelles with the theme of brevity or shortness. The villanelle is a nineteen-line poem with two repeating rhymes and two refrains. It is made up of five tercets and a quatrain. The rhyme scheme is aba aba aba aba aba abaa. The 1st and 3rd lines from the first stanza are alternately repeated so that the 1st line becomes the last line in the second stanza, and the 3rd line becomes the last line in the third stanza and so on. The last two lines of the poem are lines 1 and 3 respectively.

I started poems on 4 different topics, but ultimately couldn't get away from politics. My apologies for that. It's too bad really, because some of the other ideas were interesting. I'm going to keep working on the poem built around Shakespeare's quote "brevity is the soul of wit." It was the first thing I thought of when I began brainstorming ideas for this form and I just couldn't get it out of my head. I also worked on poems about winter days and revising poems. 

Here's the poem I'm sharing today. I thought about calling it "The Relativity of Trump," but I couldn't bring myself to do it.

Untitled Villanelle

Time is relative they say
sometimes long and sometimes brief
it just depends upon the day

November seems so far away
yet we’re still filled with disbelief
time is relative they say

We want Obama’s yesterday
when our hearts weren’t filled with grief
but it depends upon the day

We read Twitter with dismay
and with impatience seek relief
but time is relative they say

Now we must make our way
with this narcissist in chief
so hope depends upon the day

We cannot run away
we must hold to our belief
time is relative they say
it just depends upon the day

Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2017. All rights reserved.

You can read the poems written by my poetry sisters at the links below. 
I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by  Penny Klosterman at Penny and Her Jots. Happy poetry Friday friends!


  1. Both you and Kelly used grief and disbelief. It's just where we are right now, isn't it? Thank you for writing this... it's so beautiful....

  2. This line stood out to me: we cannot run away. Thank goodness for poetry, which helps us clear our heads and stand our ground.

  3. You communicated the time well, Tricia, and it was sad that you kept returning to the politics. It's at the forefront of our minds, isn't it? I do like "hold on to our belief" very much.

  4. That's you, me, Laura and Tanita in with politics today. It really is inescapable these days for most of us. "We cannot run away/we must hold to our belief". Yes. Yes. Yes.

  5. I want Obama's yesterday, too...already exhausted by the depravity of he-who-must-not-be-named.

  6. Oh, we could hardly move away from politics... it's something which takes over the brain. And the form of this poem, with so much repetition really lends itself to the emotional resonance of exhaustion, going over and over and trying to change a word here or there...

    Meanwhile, holding to our belief... ♥

  7. I hate writing about politics. But it's hard to escape right now, isn't it? I'm constantly torn between focusing on the horror and seeking relief form it. Your final quatrain is extra lovely!

  8. I find myself writing about politics even when I don't intend to. At least poetry gives a way to feel like I'm doing something constructive, even if it's just processing. No, "we cannot run away."

  9. I'd never even heard of villanelles prior to this week! I'm always amazed by the variety of form, theme and style that makes poetry such an incredible creative form.

  10. This was a good writing on politics. Great job on a tough form.

  11. Good job, Tricia. I don't blame you for leaving it untitled.

  12. We cannot run away...but it is definitely so so so painful to keep watching and trying to change what we can...

    Well done. Very well done.

  13. The villanelle is a tricky form but you did it justice. Thanks to you and your poetry sisters impress me every time!