Thursday, May 10, 2012

Writing Poetry: Bouts-Rimeś

Inspired by my teacher in my Forms of Poetry class, I have been studying the various . . . um, well . . .  forms of poetry.

Do you like collaborating?

I do!

My family and I play a game at the dinner table where one of us starts a story with one sentence and then we go around the table, each person adding another sentence so we can create a tale together. This is similar to an exercise I enjoyed with classmates in acting school, creating poetry through words and body movement. (Although my old brain can’t recall whether we spouted out one word or one sentence at a time.)

So I found this form that appealed to me because it is often played with others, the Bouts-Rimeś, which is French for “rhymed ends.”

One person makes a list of rhyming words and then gives it to another person to fill in the rest of the lines (using the words from the first person as the last word in each line – while keeping them in order).

Here is a famous example by John Keats, “ On the Grasshopper and Cricket.”

Is anyone game? Use the following list as your end words in each line:


I think that’s good for a start. Go! And please post your results in the comments.

Here is my attempt:

One day when I was not feeling so funny,
a bank account looking quite broke,
the weather outside went from thunder to sunny,
clouds opening up when I spoke.
Could you please keep in mind that my spirit’s quite soft,
my presence forever quite tiny?
To my amazement, before any words, he coughed,
then transformed from cottony to spiny,
“As a child you were loved and terribly pampered,
though your heart and eyes were often quite dewy.
Let this not ever hinder or hamper
success.” Then he just blew out an “Achooey!”


Lara Britt was so kind as to include a blurb about my blogs and my literary magazine, Mouse Tales Press, today on her website. Be sure to read through the rest of her site to experience both her wonderful writing and additional links to recommended blogs. Thank you so much, Lara!


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  1. Fun! Here's my attempt:

    “My dear,” said the man to me, “it is not funny
    to laugh at a man who’s incredibly broke.”
    He said this to me on a morning quite sunny,
    while we sat in the park. I nodded as he spoke:
    “To be sure,” he went on, in a voice sure and soft
    “it would make him feel small, even puny, or tiny,
    to laugh at his woes—” (there he paused as he coughed)
    “Sorry,” he continued, “I’m just a bit spiny.”
    “Now,” he went on, “it is true that, if pampered,
    your life can be sunny and rosy and dewy.
    But if your days are more like clothes in the hamper—”
    “It would stink,” I said then, and he answered: “Achooey!”

    1. Love it Khara, smiled all the way thru the read.

    2. Sorry, Khara, I meant to reply here... not down there ...

    3. Dang that was good! You made those ending words look like they were always meant to be there.

  2. LOL... I love it!!!! Really nice job!!!! :-D

  3. FUN! Love this!

    The Clouds Ate My Poem

    Well, that day started out kind of funny,
    ’til the stem on my hope balloon broke.
    All those helium words sent up, sunny
    and sailing, until the clouds spoke:
    “You might think us silver-lined, soft
    and our precipitations, just tiny
    but we’re mighty,” one big storm cloud coughed,
    and hailed down dizzy drizzles so spiny.
    So I stood there, perplexed and un-pampered
    while my phrases got dampened and dewy,
    would this tempest my rhyme-resolve hamper?
    And then my muse answered: “Achooey!”


    1. Nice work, De!! I like how you added the "un" to pampered. And good description for a balloon! How fun! :-)

    2. Thanks. :)
      I posted it on my blog, with a link back to your site. Hope you get some more "takers." Big fun.

  4. I say Achooey, too-ey! How delightful. We have poets such poets and poetry to send me off on my day.

    1. Thanks for popping in and sneezing with us, Lara. :-)

  5. My poetry muscles have not been exercised for a long time. Here's what I got:

    We were making a breakfast so funny-
    (We giggled with each egg we broke)
    Ham and green eggs cooked sunny.
    "Happy Mothers Day," we spoke.
    "But my pillow is so nice and soft."
    Her muffled voice was quiet and tiny
    As she rolled away and coughed.
    Waking her up was proving spiny.
    We left her flowers to feel pampered.
    She fell back into a sleep dewy
    That only the flowers could hamper-
    She woke up with a big "achooey."

  6. I used my poetic license and added an "ed" to hamper. =)

    The calico cat was quite funny,
    until my beautiful Bach bust he broke.
    Still, he pattered on, peaceful and sunny,
    an amusing, "Meow," is all that he spoke.
    His padded paws, all tufted and soft,
    with nail beds so tender and tiny,
    Clenched up when he cringed and coughed
    up a hairball, horrendous and spiny.
    A fortunate feline, petted and pampered,
    seemingly playful and dewy,
    yet, my cheerful mood, now drastically hampered,
    "You've broken my Bach! Ugh! Achooey!"

  7. I really love the variation in these. Keep them coming, readers!! :-)

  8. Achooey the hang man said as he adjusted my head
    Then he coughed as my head he was about to doff
    I wasn’t to be pampered and the dark weather did not hamper
    He was going for broke
    Then a voice so tiny from heaven spoke
    Suddenly the sky was sunny
    Looking back it seems quite funny
    The voice from aloft spoke so soft
    That the hangman’s eyes grew dewy
    He seemed to have lost his spiny
    Then as he released me he gave me a swat on my hiney
    And said
    “Don’t do that again my little friend.
    I said thanks dad I really thought this time you were really mad

    1. Ha ha ha!!! That is quite the surprise ending, sweetdreams. Very funny! :-)