To view this notification widget you need to have JavaScript enabled. This notification widget was easily created with NotifySnack.
Home Tour About Read What's New Help Forums Join Login
My Account
Shop
Save
Support
E
Book
Store
Learn
About
Jesus
  




The HOME for Christian writers!
The Home for Christian Writers!

Forums
Shop & Save to SUPPORT FaithWriters.
Upgrade to SUPPORT FaithWriters.

Jan's Master Class--RHYME SCHEME

These lessons, by one of our most consistent FaithWriters' Challenge Champions, should not be missed. So we're making a permanent home for them here.

Moderators: mikeedwards, glorybee

User avatar
glorybee
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5839
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Jan's Master Class--RHYME SCHEME

Postby glorybee » Sun Jan 25, 2009 3:15 pm

Rhyme scheme is the pattern of rhyming words at the ends of the lines in a poem. It’s indicated by assigning letters to sets of rhyming words. This won’t be a very long lesson, as rhyme scheme is a fairly simple concept—but as usual, I’ll be encouraging you to break out of old habits, to stretch, to grow.

Let’s examine the rhyme scheme of a typical limerick, to see how it works. Here’s a nice clean one by Edward Lear:

There was an Old Man who supposed, A
That the street door was partially closed; A
But some very large rats, B
Ate his coats and his hats, B
While that futile old gentleman dozed A


You can see that supposed, closed, and dozed all rhyme, and therefore they’ve all been assigned the letter “A”. Likewise, rats and hats rhyme, so they get a “B”. We’d write the rhyme scheme of a limerick as aabba.

Couplets, by definition, have an aa rhyme scheme. Here’s an example from the king of short, humorous poetry, Ogden Nash:

The cow is of the bovine ilk; A
One end is moo, the other, milk. A


Of course, 2-line poems are rare, but it’s quite common to find a poem made up of a series of couplets. I’ll bet you’re very familiar with this one:

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house A
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. A
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care B
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there; B
The children were nestled all snug in their beds C
While visions of sugarplums danced in their heads… C


Some kinds of poems have specifically prescribed rhyme schemes; a Shakespearean sonnet, for example, is abab cdcd efef gg. Several people on this site have attempted sestinas, villanelles, and pantoums, each with their own specific rhyme schemes. Those of you who enjoy experimenting with new forms of poetry and who like working within a certain structure may consider researching those forms and attempting one. I’ll whet your appetite with a recent entry by newcomer (and rapidly rising) Sonya Leigh: Of Gifts Divine (a villanelle). And here is a sestina by Henry Clemmons--gorgeous. Leave him a comment, please--he's not here nearly often enough.

Fancy new verse forms are fun, but as I mentioned a few weeks ago, the most common kind of rhymed poetry in the Writing Challenge is made up of a series of quatrains. Even though quatrains only have 4 lines, there are several possible rhyme schemes. If you’re used to writing aabb quatrains, like this:

To God be the glory, great things He has done
So loved He the world that He gave us His son
Who yielded His life, an atonement for sin
And opened the life-gate that all may go in...


Think about writing an abab quatrain next time. Like this:

O Lord, my God, when I in awesome wonder
Consider all the worlds Thy hands have made
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder
Thy power throughout the universe displayed…


Or you could write in abcb quatrains:

Rejoice, ye pure in heart
Rejoice, give thanks, and sing
Your festal banner wave on high
The cross of Christ your King…


Oh, there are so many ways that you can mix it up! Other common quatrain rhyme schemes are aaba, abba, and even aaab. With an aaab quatrain, the ”b” word often becomes the rhyme in the next stanza, which goes bbbc, followed by a cccd verse, and so on in a lovely, rhyming chain.

(Can you think of other rhyme schemes that would form a chain?)

Go wild! And of course, there are rhyme schemes for 5- and 6-line poems, and 13-line poems, and any other length of rhyming poem, too. It’s usually best to use the same rhyme scheme for each stanza, but there’s nothing that says you can’t add...

~a refrain with a different rhyme scheme (and meter, perhaps)
~a little couplet at the end of a series of quatrains
~a 5th line every other stanza
~something else to "shake up" the rhyme scheme a bit

What I’m saying, I guess, is that the judges will appreciate variety in the poems they read, and that finding a creative rhyme scheme is definitely one way to add variety to your poetry.

Homework: Write a poem with a rhyme scheme that you’ve never attempted before. You’re on your honor here—I have no way to check! OR link to a Challenge piece that has a unique rhyme scheme. OR ask a question, or respond to something I wrote about rhyme scheme.

A reminder that although the previous classes are now gone forever as threads, I’ve got them compiled into one long Word document, and I’ll gladly send the document to you free of charge. Just PM me with your e-mail address, and I’ll send it right along.

Next week: Setting
Last edited by glorybee on Wed Jan 28, 2009 3:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
GShuler
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2007 3:35 pm
Location: Sapulpa, Ok

Postby GShuler » Mon Jan 26, 2009 12:04 am

I think you'll find, without a doubt,
Your clothes look tacky inside-out.


That's just a teaser. Now I'll get serious.

At limericks my talent is fine...
I write them each night as I dine.
But it seems rather poor
That right after line four
It never fails that I get too many words in the last line.
Last edited by GShuler on Tue Jan 27, 2009 1:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
I had something really memorable to write here but I forgot what it was.
Gerald Shuler

User avatar
GShuler
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2007 3:35 pm
Location: Sapulpa, Ok

Postby GShuler » Mon Jan 26, 2009 1:08 am

Jan,
Here is my real attempt at a poem style I've never tried. I hope the subject can be forgiven. I'm living this poem at the moment. Keep my wife and I in your prayers.

Death Watch

I try, I try to bring you cheer
when all I really feel is fear
because I know the time is near
when you are going to leave.

Already my heart wants to grieve,
but I dare not let you perceive
the sorrow mixed within the weave
of wanting you to smile.

Our stand of faith throughout this trial
Is based on Jesus, not denial.
so bear with me as all the while
I try to bring you cheer.
Last edited by GShuler on Mon Jan 26, 2009 4:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
I had something really memorable to write here but I forgot what it was.
Gerald Shuler

User avatar
glorybee
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5839
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Postby glorybee » Mon Jan 26, 2009 2:26 am

Gerald, your limerick is so delightful!

As for your "chain rhyme" poem--beautifully and tenderly written. I love that the 4th line of each stanza, in addition to introducing a new rhyme, also varies the meter, causing the reading to stop for a moment to sink it in.

The subject--heartbreaking. We are certainly praying for you.
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
hwnj
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
 
Posts: 232
Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2007 9:02 am
Location: New Jersey, USA

Postby hwnj » Mon Jan 26, 2009 9:36 am

While I have written a couple of acrostics before, (not for FW,) I had never done one with multiple words. When I counted up the letters in "United States of America" and found that there were 21 letters, the sestina did not even cross my mind, so, for the first time ever, I wrote a poem in rhyming triplets. Yes, there is one point where six lines in a row rhyme, but it simply happened that way because of what I was trying to communicate at that point.
Indivisible?
Holly

"There are two ways of spreading light -- to be the candle, or the mirror that reflects it." Edith Wharton

'It is better to be liked for the true you, than to be loved for who people think you are.'

"In order to realize the worth of the anchor, one needs to feel the stress of the storm." Daily Encouragement Net (Stephen & Brooksyne Weber)

My Profile

User avatar
glorybee
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5839
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Postby glorybee » Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:35 am

Thanks, Holly, for your very well-contructed acrostic with a unique aaabbbcccddd rhyme scheme.

If you all haven't read it yet, stop in and take a look at Holly's poem--it's got one awesome kicker!
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
Symphonic
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
 
Posts: 282
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:24 am
Location: Texas

Postby Symphonic » Tue Jan 27, 2009 1:21 am

It’s been a long time since I made a serious attempt to write a rhyming poem. I can honestly say I don’t think I’ve ever attempted this rhyme scheme (a relatively simple one, I realize!), so here goes:

Mere notes upon the page are mute
Without a master’s art to bring
To life the lifeless stroke of pen, or sing
The words with lyre or lute–
To mold the real out of imagining.

We too are unvoiced, tuneless notes
Upon an unheard, unsung page,
Mute instruments upon an empty stage–
Until the Music Master invokes
His power to mold our song into His image.


Carol S.

User avatar
glorybee
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5839
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Postby glorybee » Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:08 am

Oh, Carol! That's so beautiful! Love the abbab rhyme scheme...in an unusual rhyme scheme like that, the ear doesn't necessarily "anticipate" the upcoming rhyme, but when it encounters one, it's a delightful little gift.

And as a fellow music lover, I really enjoyed the gorgeous metaphor. Really, really well done!

I'm a person who admires wonderful poetry, but can't write it without great difficulty. I'm curious; how long did it take you to write that?
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
glorybee
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5839
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Postby glorybee » Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:38 am

Chrissy--how wonderful to see you stop by here! Welcome!

That's a gorgeous poem, Chrissy, so full of peaceful and serene images. The abab rhyme scheme seems very natural here. Thanks for sharing it with us!
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
Symphonic
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
 
Posts: 282
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:24 am
Location: Texas

Postby Symphonic » Tue Jan 27, 2009 2:05 pm

Thanks so much, Jan, for your kind words about my poem.

In answer to your question... I started mulling over the idea on Sunday evening, so that when I sat down to write it yesterday afternoon, I had all but the last two lines. I finished it when I got home from choir rehearsal last night.

Thinking about rhyme scheme reminded me of T. S. Eliot’s masterful use of it in “Ash Wednesday.” It’s a six-part work, and his use of rhyme (and language in general!) is complex, moving and profound. Part I begins:

Because I do not hope to turn again
Because I do not hope
Because I do not hope to turn
Desiring this man’s gift and that man’s scope
I no longer strive to strive towards such things
(Why should the aged eagle stretch its wings?)
Why should I mourn
The vanished power of the usual reign?


Part I concludes, several stanzas later:

Because these wings are no longer wings to fly
But merely vans to beat the air
The air which is now thoroughly small and dry
Smaller and dryer than the will
Teach us to care and not to care
Teach us to sit still.

Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death
Pray for us now and at the hour of our death.


Looking over the poem in its entirety, I notice that almost every stanza employs a different rhyme scheme... but I had never thought about this before. Thanks for reminding me!

Carol S.

User avatar
Verna
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 4482
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 9:10 pm
Location: NC

Postby Verna » Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:08 pm

I was going to try to write one, but Carol's was so beautiful, I decided to read it again and scold my muse for being so mundane, and maybe try again...later.
Verna

A merry heart doeth good like a medicine...
Proverb 17:22

Facebook author page: Verna Cole Mitchell
http://www.magnificomanuscripts.com/

User avatar
glorybee
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5839
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Postby glorybee » Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:40 pm

Oh, please try again, Verna! You're a wonderful poet!
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
Verna
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 4482
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 9:10 pm
Location: NC

Postby Verna » Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:26 pm

Just for you, Jan! I wasn't reaching for a compliment. Sometimes I'm truly awed by the talent here at Faithwriters. I feel like I've been blessed to have the technical background and the help of fellow faithwriters here, along with the challenges, to improve my writing. I've worked to become a better writer, still admiring, without being jealous :-) the creative gifts I see in others.

I read some poems from a master’s pen,
That like a mighty ocean ebbed and flowed
With pictures piercing deep within my heart,
And wished that gift were given as my art.

I watched a patient spider weave her web;
Unceasingly she plied her silken thread.
“I’ll take my small creative gift,” I said,
“And gladly weave together words instead.”
Verna

A merry heart doeth good like a medicine...
Proverb 17:22

Facebook author page: Verna Cole Mitchell
http://www.magnificomanuscripts.com/

User avatar
glorybee
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5839
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Postby glorybee » Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:34 pm

Lovely, Verna!

I share your sentiments, 100% This is the best site ever, with unbeleivable talent abounding. I'm particularly in awe of good poets--as I said, I've tried a few poems, but it's HARD WORK.
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
lthomas
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
 
Posts: 213
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 11:53 am
Location: Just north of Seattle

Postby lthomas » Wed Jan 28, 2009 11:55 am

My hats again off to poets, who can rhyme words and give them both profound and beautiful meanings. Here’s my assignment with aa, bb, aa, rhyme scheme. PS - I have no idea where the thought for this rhyme came from, but it would not go away until I put it down on paper. :?

My heart stopped at what Mother had said
Still in the womb, she wanted me dead.
My being born to have an earthly life
Was to bring to her unwanted strife.
My Father in heaven simply shook His head
And brought me back home to Him instead.



Loren
"And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything." From "As You Like It." Wm. Shakespeare.

Next

Return to Jan's Writing Basics

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


© MeasurelessMedia. All rights reservedTerms of Service



Jesus - True for You But not for Me      Website Builder     Build Website     Is Jesus God?    
Does God exist?     Build a writers website     Does truth exist?     Website online in minutes