Thursday, April 2, 2009

Poetry Month: Cinquain

The theme for my poems this week was inspired by Jolea's Facebook status, which was that "I dream of a better tomorrow... where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives."

simple; intent
it went across the road
feeling anxious in the headlights

Cinquain is a short, usually unrhymed poem consisting of twenty-two syllables distributed as 2, 4, 6, 8, 2, in five lines. It was developed by the Imagist poet, Adelaide Crapsey. (For further information, please scroll down for an article on Cinquain from the SP Quill Quarterly Magazine written by Deborah P Kolodji.)

Another form, sometimes used by school teachers to teach grammar, is as follows:
Line 1: Noun
Line 2: Description of Noun
Line 3: Action
Line 4: Feeling or Effect
Line 5: Synonym of the initial noun.
kind beyond words
they protect and forgive
and make feelings of blissfulness

Copyright © 2003 Erin Holbrook

Example #1:
Turquoise Thoughts

silver bracelet,
desert sky turquoise stone - 
city-bound but feels sagebrush in
her soul.

Copyright © 2005 Deborah P Kolodji

Example #2:
Cherry Blossoms 

blossoms float on
the afternoon breezes.
Petals fluttering down like snow
in spring.

Copyright © 2005 Marie Summers

Example #3:
Joshua Tree 

hair spiked,
a crooked stance
in the hot desert sun -
dust in his face, he limps towards
the blue

Copyright © 2005 Deborah P Kolodji


  1. I haven't been commenting, but I just wanted to tell you that this series TOTALLY rocks. I LOVE it! Poetry fascinates me, but I know very little about it. Poets are a bit like rock stars, in my mind.

  2. I've been seeing this form around 3WW sometimes, and I never really knew what the definition was. I think the chicken ballad was better, though...



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