07. December 2012 · Comments Off on 5 Funny Love Poems · Categories: Poetry · Tags: , ,

When most people think of love poems, they think of serious and soulful expressions of passion. Long sonnets by Shakespeare or romantic poems by Browning and Lord Byron are the norm for love poetry. However, funny love poems can be good for a laugh. They may not be romantic, but they do give your friends something to enjoy.

Some of the best funny love poems are limericks. Limericks started in Ireland and follow a standard form of five lines and a rhyme scheme of aabba. Here are a few limericks written by anonymous authors:

There once was an old man of Lyme

Who married three wives at a time

When asked “Why a third?”

He replied, “One’s absurd!

And bigamy, Sir, is a crime.”

There was a young fellow named Hammer

Whose had an unfortunate stammer

“The b-bane of my life”

Said he, “Is m-m-my wife

D-d-d-d-d-d-damn ‘er!”

She made friends with a young undertaker;

Her last boyfriend had forsaken her.

But she started to curse

When he turned up in a hearse.

She said next time I’ll date a baker!

There was a young lady named Constance,

From boys she wouldn’t stand any nonsense.

If her partners grew deft

She would lead with her left;

The results would not weigh on her conscience.

My sweetheart and I are just wed.

Already I wish I were dead.

Two weeks she’s been spending.

It was time never ending.

We are thousands of pounds in the red!

Limericks are fairly easy to write if you can rhyme well, so you might try writing a limerick yourself that includes the name of your friend or loved one. This is a good way to make a funny love poem that is personalized.

You can find more information about funny poems at:

http://www.love-poems-quotes.info/funny-love-poems.html

09. February 2012 · Comments Off on I Have Seen · Categories: Poetry · Tags: , ,

I have seen

I have sat in a woods …. On a cool fall morning, and smelt the freshly fallen leaves that become my carpet.

I have seen the circles of life exposed on a newly fallen tree and felt the cool sap on my fingers ….

Yes, I have seen.

I have lain on the damp sand and heard the ocean waves rush to shore and depart again.

I have smelled the salty and fragrant waves as I watched the sun slowly sink into ocean with a fiery orange glow and felt small in the presence of greatness.

Yes, I have seen

I have sat upon the top of a mountain on a sheet of pine needles and watched the sun arise from a distant valley. I have listened to the eagles call for me to pay attention and the wind caress my skin to show me I was experiencing a miracle …

Yes, I have seen

Yes, I have seen more than most yet less then some …

And stored each experience in my very spirit.

With countless experiences, I can recall most in vivid detail

I stored with each memory the smell, touch, feel, sound and sight

Of all I experienced

A treasure chest filled with experiences that left me breathless

Are within my reach so I can pull from it and relive the miracle

Of that day, that second of my life that enriched my being

Therefore, I can pull them out and experience them repeatedly

When a day comes upon me that is filled with strife

Or a day emerges filled with complications and emotional turbulences

I reached into the treasure chest of my life

And know I am blessed because …. I have seen

Rhiannon Waits …. 2003

31. August 2011 · Comments Off on She Walks in Beauty: a Discussion of the Poem by Lord Byron · Categories: Poetry · Tags: , ,

She walks in beauty, like the night

Of cloudless climes and starry skies;

And all that’s best of dark and bright

Meet in her aspect and her eyes:

Thus mellow’d to that tender light

Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,

Had half impair’d the nameless grace

Which waves in every raven tress,

Or softly lightens o’er her face;

Where thoughts serenely sweet express

How pure, how dear their dwelling place.

And on that cheek, and o’er that brow,

So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,

The smiles that win, the tints that glow,

But tell of days in goodness spent,

A mind at peace with all below,

A heart whose love is innocent!

Lord Byron’s opening couplet to “She Walks In Beauty” is among the most memorable and most quoted lines in romantic poetry. The opening lines are effortless, graceful, and beautiful, a fitting match for his poem about a woman who possesses effortless grace and beauty.

About the Poem, “She Walks In Beauty”

In June, 1814, several months before he met and married his first wife, Anna Milbanke, Lord Byron attended a party at Lady Sitwell’s. While at the party, Lord Byron was inspired by the sight of his cousin, the beautiful Mrs. Wilmot, who was wearing a black spangled mourning dress. Lord Byron was struck by his cousin’s dark hair and fair face, the mingling of various lights and shades. This became the essence of his poem about her.

According to his friend, James W. Webster, “I did take him to Lady Sitwell’s party in Seymour Road. He there for the first time saw his cousin, the beautiful Mrs. Wilmot. When we returned to his rooms in Albany, he said little, but desired Fletcher to give him a tumbler of brandy, which he drank at one to Mrs. Wilmot’s health, then retired to rest, and was, I heard afterwards, in a sad state all night. The next day he wrote those charming lines upon her—She walks in Beauty like the Night…”

The poem was published in 1815. Also in that year Lord Byron wrote a number of songs to be set to traditional Jewish tunes by Isaac Nathan. Lord Byron included “She Walks in Beauty” with those poems.

Discussion of the Poem

The first couple of lines can be confusing if not read properly. Too often readers stop at the end of the first line where there is no punctuation. This is an enjambed line, meaning that it continues without pause onto the second line. That she walks in beauty like the night may not make sense as night represents darkness. However, as the line continues, the night is a cloudless one with bright stars to create a beautiful mellow glow. The first two lines bring together the opposing qualities of darkness and light that are at play throughout the three verses.

The remaining lines of the first verse employ another set of enjambed lines that tell us that her face and eyes combine all that’s best of dark and bright. No mention is made here or elsewhere in the poem of any other physical features of the lady. The focus of the vision is upon the details of the lady’s face and eyes which reflect the mellowed and tender light. She has a remarkable quality of being able to contain the opposites of dark and bright.

The third and fourth lines are not only enjambed, but the fourth line begins with an irregularity in the meter called a metrical substitution. The fourth line starts with an accented syllable followed by an unaccented one, rather than the iambic meter of the other lines, an unaccented syllable followed by an accented one. The result is that the word “Meet” receives attention, an emphasis. The lady’s unique feature is that opposites “meet” in her in a wonderful way.

The second verse tells us that the glow of the lady’s face is nearly perfect. The shades and rays are in just the right proportion, and because they are, the lady possesses a nameless grace. This conveys the romantic idea that her inner beauty is mirrored by her outer beauty. Her thoughts are serene and sweet. She is pure and dear.

The last verse is split between three lines of physical description and three lines that describe the lady’s moral character. Here soft, calm glow reflects a life of peace and goodness. This is a repetition, an emphasis, of the theme that the lady’s physical beauty is a reflection of her inner beauty.

Lord Byron greatly admired his cousin’s serene qualities on that particular night and he has left us with an inspired poem.

The poem was written shortly before Lord Byron’s marriage to Anna Milbanke and published shortly after the marriage.

22. August 2011 · Comments Off on Useful Tips on Writing Rhyme Incorporated Poetry · Categories: Poetry · Tags: , ,

As we all know, there are so many types and genres of poetry and learning it one by one is time consuming, simply ‘cos one must first seek and understand the meaning of each form, before one can write a poem of his/her own in a chosen form or style, but if you are like me, (patient enough to learn new things) who loves

creating/inventing new poetic form, then bare with me and I’ll share with you the hints writing poetry in a new poetic form called “Rhyme Incorporated”

A “Rhyme Incorporated” is a poetic form

meaning “incorporation of poets’ names and the titles of their poems” in a new poem. Rhyme incorporated poem can be written as a short three mono-rhyming lines (a Tercet) or in multiple stanzas of mono-rhyming tercet and it is drawn from the titles of poems written by poets around the world. The rhyme scheme for this form of poetry is aaa, bbb, ccc, etc.; line 1 and 3 may or may not have same syllable counts.

I created “Rhyme Incorporated” as an answer to the calls of my peers/fellow poets: to write a tag poem (being played in 2007 at the Poetrysoup Community) to culminate the performance of other members by sharing a tag poem and have fun writing poetry.

Writing in this poetic form one must bare in mind to stay focus on his/her topic and no doubt must keep the interest of the readers. Also remember, in order to have a successful “Rhyme Incorporated” poem, one must read other poets works, (why? simply because how can you write a rhyme incorporated poem without knowing the names of the poets and their poems), then select the titles of their poems and with your own feelings/ideas, carefully construct a meaningful, interesting and heartfelt poem.

Well, the goal of this poetic form is to write a poem and at the same time to unite and to promote other poets and their works, and to foster and solidify brotherhood/sisterhood/camaraderie/friendship/peace among poets.

Surely, writing Rhyme Incorporated poetry is a lot of fun, enlightening and a very challenging activity. At first glance it seems difficult, but when you have the will to write, then I assure 99%, if not 100% that you can write a rhyme incorporated poem and the further you go in studying/writing in this form the closer you become the great master of Rhyme Incorporated. Oh, do not stress yourself or push your brain hard writing this kind of poetry, lest your work become meaningless and you end up not feeling well about me…lol.

And, if you are not a poet but has the craving to become one, just like me, and want to give it a try writing poetry, well there is always a solution. Use Google search and find an existing poetry forum/community/site, then join and start reading their works (you need to do a lot of reading, before you can write a rhyme incorporated poem) and at the same time read/commend their works. And, if you see an interesting title of poem that you can use for your own rhyme incorporated, list it down on a piece of paper and later write a poem, but only when you are inspired, ‘cos this way you can easily write in this form and the best part of all, it will make your poem a masterpiece that everybody will look at and of course, it will make you feel proud of yourself and feel like a great poet too.

Ok, here’s the simple rule of this poetic form, a poem is not a rhyme incorporated poem, without the names of other poets and their poems’ title in your poem. That’s it!

Lastly, do not forget to acknowledge the poets, for using their names and the titles of their works in your Rhyme Incorporated poem. This can be done by making a footnote at the end of your poem. A simple “thank you” note will be fair enough. Incorporating other poets or your own peers and their works in your rhyme incorporated poem is a compliment/an honor to all of them. But above all, be friendly or else they won’t allow you putting their names and titles of their works in your poem…lol! Good luck!

Here’s an example of a three line (Tercet) Rhyme Incorporated:

One Day In Spring

O, waiting for John Heck “In Fields of Eden”,

when “I Kissed a Butterfly” for “Breaking the Pen”

that Brandlynn Scruggs asked for “An Hour in Heaven”.

This poem consists of:

Poet John Heck, his poem “In Fields of Eden”

Poet Brandlynn Scruggs, her poem “An Hour in Heaven”

Me, my poems “I Kissed A Butterfly” and “Breaking the Pen”.

Here’s an example of a longer Rhyme Incorporated:

Starless Night: The Art Of Giving

1. I was reading Michelle MacDonald’s superb piece of art “Sea Shanty”

2. Secretly, under the haiku master Katherine Stella’s “Yum Yum Tree”

3. When smiling Carol Brown, invited me to her grand “Surprise Party”

4. The charming lady of the soup was no longer feeling bad or “Sideline”

5. After mending herself, thru helpful John Boak’s “Like The Best Wine”

6. I am not sure, if, playful Julie Bristow told her, the miracle of “Divine”

7. Thank God! Doret Cope sighed; she didn’t suffer from a “Stolen Love”

8. She enjoyed the work of Dawn Drickman’s “The Tiger And The Dove”

9. She is a good person, that I told her my secret, of having “Other Love”

10. At the party, Keith Bickerstaffe, without her luckless maid “Ophelia”

11. Was talking to Sir William Robinson, the great man behind “Mahalia”

12. I guessed she asked him why I wrote “O God, The Rat Has A Phobia”

13. Dancing flawlessly, to the nostalgic tune of Jeffrey Lee’s “Music”

14. Was my haiku mentor, she’s mesmerized by Mahalia’s “Light Magic”

15. But co-host, a certain Adam Piper was caught trapped, at “The Attic”

16. I did surprise all, even Sir William Robinson, “When I Stop And Pray”

17. I interrupted my recitation, of own favorite “Cast Your Doubts Away”

18. ‘Cos, I rather break my pen, but not a promise: “And To Thee, I Pray”

19. Epulaeryu chef Joseph Spence Sr. who “Makes The World Go Round”

20. Was explaining, his cooking, to sweet Elaine George, but “Spellbound”

21. By the strong romantic power, of yellow “Dried Rose On The Ground”

22. That got humble Daria Stone confused, of feeling “Unlocked, Not Free”

23. A beauteous Deborah Simpson smiled and asked him: “Sequester Me”

24. Joyful Karen O’Leary said, the handsome chef, will “Travel With Me”

25. Thinking of O, Ms. Jill Martin was in her solitude “Quietly…breathing”

26. That, she just waved her hand greeting April Lewis “Without Speaking”

27. I spied humorist Donald Meikle, writing a “Note to a Lady in Waiting”

28. Let’s party! exclaimed silent Sami Al-Khalili, but not “Only In Winter”

29. That’s a real cool idea, and I said, how about in “The Field Of Summer”

30. Dame Marcyle Beer offered her place, called “Welcome To Fort Beer”

31. A rising star Taryn Melville proudly breezed in: saying “I Am From…”

32. But, party guy Anthony Slauson showed us his “Fingers of Freedom”

33. Leaving noble Alyssa Finley’s young mind fixated in “Dreams Come”

34. A free verse expert JeanMarie Marchese of Homosassa, uttered “Slow”

35. Let snow lover Linda Smith tell us first her “Footprints In The Snow”

36. Indeed, we’ve our time to introduce ourselves, before “The Cockcrow”

37. Sweet Elaine George arrived, when the night still had a “Tender Heart”

38. With a special gift, for Raquel Nicholson, ‘cos she has “a broken heart”

39. I learned that Big John Tanaskow did not wish to go “Back At the Start”

40. The party made poetic Mark Hansen expressed himself, in “Cloud Nine”

41. Perhaps he had consumed much of shy type Nicola Steel’s “Plumy Wine”

42. For he was too excited, to meet a bright Seema Ali, on a “Poetry Online”

43. Before the party was over, Juanita Ganir, sprung from her “Sacred Well”

44. And, old Londoner Matt Doe spoke, of his mighty “Showdown In Hell”

45. To a sexy Tamiviolet Manchas, but, she xoxoxo urged him, “Don’t Tell”

46. Many thanks, to photographer William Jones, for his “Living In Color”

47. A souvenir that reflects my own plea to “Make Me Whole, Once More”

48. A plea to everyone, to all friends, to remember that “My Name Is Thor”

49. That night, vibrant Effie Blake told me “You Don’t Have To Be A Star”

50. To see the beauty of this world or meet Troy Nelson, of the “Dead Star”

51. Ahh!!! My voice need to be heard, that I wrote “To You, Mr. Apolinar”

52. It’s about quest of heart and mind, of being simply “Me And The Moon”

53. Stressed Michele Nold had a simple request, “Where is the Bath Room”

54. I didn’t entertain her, for I felt dizzy coming out from “The Lost Room”

55. Then, I overheard grin-faced Oshin Ifedayo saying, “She’s gone at Last”

56. Who’s who? The “Christians, Muslims, Jews…” “Heaven Waits For Us”

57. A place of peace, where we can write a sonnet, of being “Home, At Last”

58. So, you can tag or be tagged, in our “Starless Night: The Art Of Giving”

59. I agreed, with Vince Suzadail Jr., that giving’s more of a “Human Being”

60. Tammy Armstrong liked the ambience, but said, “Something’s Missing”

61. Some didn’t come; they’re busy surfing, ‘cos “The Deep Blue Is Rough”

62. Historian Charles Fuller sent them a note, “I Hear You In A Photograph”

63. Now, I see why dear Tatiyana Carney has “Lock Box And Photographs.”

Note: “Starless Night: The Art Of Giving” is a long poem of 63 lines

(not included the line count between stanzas) and has incorporated 43 poets

and 65 poems. See what other poets are saying about this piece, by clicking

here: http://www.poetrysoup.com/poem_detail.asp?PoemID=52454

08. November 2009 · Comments Off on A Discussion of Emily Dickinson’s Poem, Because I Could not Stop for Death · Categories: Poetry · Tags: , ,

Because I could not stop for Death —

He kindly stopped for me —

The Carriage held but just Ourselves —

And Immortality.

We slowly drove — He knew no haste

And I had put away

My labor and my leisure too,

For His Civility —

We passed the School, where Children strove

At Recess — in the Ring —

We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain —

We passed the Setting Sun —

Or rather — He passed us —

The Dews drew quivering and chill —

For only Gossamer, my Gown —

My Tippet — only Tulle —

We paused before a House that seemed

A Swelling of the Ground —

The Roof was scarcely visible —

The Cornice — in the Ground —

Since then — ’tis Centuries — and yet

Feels shorter than the Day

I first surmised the Horses’ Heads

Were toward Eternity —

Emily Dickinson was an innovative and talented American poet who wrote nearly 1800 poems during her brief lifetime from 1830 to 1886. Dickinson became publicly well known as a poet only after her death because she chose to publish only a very small number of her poems, somewhere between seven and twelve, during her lifetime.

Emily Dickinson’s Life

Emily Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachusetts, to a well known family. Her grandfather helped to found Amherst College and her father, a lawyer, served for numerous years in the Massachusetts legislature and in the United States Congress. Dickinson had a one year older brother and a three years younger sister.

As a young girl and teenager Dickinson acquired many friends, some lasting a lifetime, received approval and attention from her father, and behaved fittingly for a girl during the Victorian era. She received a classical education from the Amherst Academy and was required by her father to read the Bible. Though she attended church regularly only for a few years, her Christian foundation remained strong throughout her life.

Dickinson attended nearby Mount Holyoke College for only one year, due to numerous reasons, and then was brought back home by her brother, Austin. The Dickinson family lived in a home overlooking the town’s cemetery, where she is buried, for a few years before moving into the home her grandfather had built, called “The Homestead.”

At home in Amherst, Dickinson became a capable housekeeper, cook, and gardener. She attended local events, became friends with some of her fathers’ acquaintances, and read a number of books given to her by her friends and her brother. Most books had to be smuggled into the home for fear that her father would disapprove of them.

Emily Dickinson enjoyed the writings of an impressive list of contemporaries such as Emerson, Thoreau, Hawthorne, Longfellow, Whittier, Lowell, and Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. She also read from the Victorians, Charlotte Bronte, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Thomas Carlyle, and George Eliot, and the Romantic poet Lord Byron. She also loved “David Copperfield” by Charles Dickens. When she discovered Shakespeare she asked, “Why is any other book needed?” In her home she hung portraits of Eliot, Browning, and Carlyle.

Dickinson grew more reclusive into the 1850’s. She began writing poems and received favorable response from her friends. Throughout the rest of her life she adopted the friendly practice of giving poems to her friends and bouquets of flowers from her garden. Her garden was so varied and well-cared that she was better known as a gardener than a poet.

During the Civil War years of the early 1860’s, Emily Dickinson wrote more than 800 poems, the most prolific writing period of her life. During this period Dickinson saw the death of several friends, a teacher, and the declining health of her mother who she had to tend closely. These unhappy events saddened Dickinson and led her to treat the subject of death in many of her poems.

Following the Civil War and for the remaining 20 years of her life, Dickinson rarely left the property limits of The Homestead. Her father, mother, and sister Lavinia all lived with her at home, and her brother lived next door at The Evergreens with his wife, Susan, a longtime friend to Emily, and their children. She enjoyed the company of her family and wrote often to her friends, but residents of Amherst only knew her as the “woman in white” when they infrequently saw her greeting visitors.

After several friends, a nephew, and her parents died, Dickinson wrote fewer and fewer poems and stopped organizing them, as she had been doing for many years. She wrote that, “the dyings have been too deep for me.” Dickinson developed a kidney disease which she suffered from for the remaining two years of her life. The final short letter that she wrote to her cousins read, “Little Cousins, Called Back. Emily.”

Characteristics of Dickinson’s Poetry

Emily Dickinson’s sister, Lavinia, gathered Emily’s poems and published them in 1890. Editors changed some of her words, punctuations, and capitalizations to make them conform to a certain standard. Later editions restored Dickinson’s unique style and organized them in a roughly chronological order.

Emily Dickinson’s poems have many identifiable features. Her poems have been memorized, enjoyed, and discussed since their first publication. Many critics consider her to have been extraordinarily gifted in her abilities to create concise, meaningful, and memorable poems.

The major themes in her poetry include Friends, Nature, Love, and Death. Not surprisingly, she also refers to flowers often in her poems. Many of her poems’ allusions come from her education in the Bible, classical mythology, and Shakespeare.

Dickinson did not give titles to her poems, an unusual feature. Others have given titles to some of her poems, and often the first line of the poem is used as a title.

She wrote short lines, preferring to be concise in her images and references. A study of her letters to friends and mentors shows that her prose style was composed of short iambic phrases, making her prose very similar to her poetry.

Dickinson’s poems are generally short in length, rarely consisting of more than six stanzas, as in “Because I Could Not Stop for Death.” Many of her poems are only one or two stanzas in length. The stanzas are quatrains of four lines. Some poems have stanzas of three or two lines.

The rhythm in many of her poems is called common meter or ballad meter. Both types of meter consist of a quatrain with the first and third lines having four iambic feet and the second and fourth lines having three iambic feet. The iambic foot is a unit of two syllables with the first syllable unstressed and the second syllable stressed.

In her quatrains the rhyme scheme is most often abcb, where only the second and fourth lines rhyme. Such a rhyme scheme is typical of a ballad meter.

Many other poems are written in a meter that is typical of English hymns. This rhythm pattern is characterized by quatrains where lines one, two, and four are written in iambic trimeter and the third line is written in iambic tetrameter.

Often her rhymes are near rhymes or slant rhymes. A near rhyme means that the two rhyming words do not rhyme exactly. They only make a near match.

In Dickinson’s poems, capitalizations and punctuations are unorthodox. She regularly capitalized the nouns but sometimes she was inconsistent and a few nouns were not capitalized. For punctuation, she frequently used a dash instead of a comma or a period, and sometimes she used a dash to separate phrases within a line. Some editions of her poems have attempted to correct the punctuation of her poems.

A dozen or more composers have set Dickinson’s poems to music, including Aaron Copland who produced “Twelve Songs on Poems of Emily Dickinson” in 1951. 0ne of the interesting ways to treat some of Dickinson’s most famous poems, often learned in school, is to sing them to the tune of “Amazing Grace,” or “The Yellow Rose of Texas, or most humorously, the theme to “Gilligan’s Island.”

Because I Could Not Stop for Death

“Because I Could Not Stop for Death” is a brilliant poem, well constructed, easily understood, and filled with many poetic conventions. The first stanza is often quoted alone and represents one of the most inspired quatrains in American poetry.

In the first stanza Dickinson has created a wonderful metaphor that is carried throughout the poem. She has personified death, giving him a name, a conveyance, and a companion. The presence of Immortality in the carriage softens the idea of the arrival of Death. And the fact that He kindly stopped is both a reassurance that his arrival was not unpleasant and an expression of the poet’s wit. It is ironic in a humorous way to imagine Death being kind. The speaker in the poem is speaking of an event that happened in the past, another reassurance that there is survival after death. Dickinson’s Christian view of eternity and the immortality of life are evident in these stanzas.

The second stanza is about Death arriving slowly such as the result of a disease, which in fact Dickinson did succumb to at the end of her life. Again, there is an ironic reference to Death, this time to his civility, which rhymes with “immortality” from the first stanza and ties the two stanzas together. Notice that there are a couple of examples of alliteration, one in the first line with “knew no,” and another in the third line with “labor” and “leisure.”

The third stanza gives a picture of the journey. The children and the school in the first line refer to early life. The fields of ripening grain in the third line refer to life’s middle stage. Finally, the setting sun in the fourth line refers to the final stage of life. Notice the use of anaphora to effectively tie all of the stages of life together. The repetition of the phrase, “we passed,” at the beginning of the lines is known as anaphora. There is also a pleasant example of alliteration in the second line, “recess” and “ring.”

The fourth stanza contains two more examples of effective alliteration and creates the image of a person who is not dressed appropriately for a funeral. In fact, the gossamer gown is more like a wedding dress, which represents a new beginning rather than an end. Notice also the near rhyme in this stanza as well as in several other stanzas. Oddly, this stanza was not included in early editions of Dickinson’s poems; however it appears in all of the more recent editions.

The grave or tomb is described in the fifth stanza as a house. The description indicates that the poet feels at ease with the location. The last stanza indicates that centuries have passed, though ironically it seems shorter than the day. The “horses’ heads” is a comfortable alliteration and ties the vision back to the first stanza. The final word, “eternity,” which rhymes with “immortality” in the first stanza also brings all of the stanzas together and brings the poem to a calm close.