2015 Poetry Form Challenge

#09 English or Keatsian Ode




There is no doubt that the ode form was brought to England at the same time as the sonnet, indeed its form is all but a quatrain similar, and was used by many poets.
Because of this similarity, it is believed that Keats whilst writing sonnets also rediscovered the ode.
The English Ode uses a single four line Sicilian stanza and an Italian Sestet.

Leny Roovers' 'Ode to a Stilton' example below uses the rhyme scheme of a. b. a. b. c. d. e. c. d. e, which defines the shape of the ode as 10 lines per stanza.
Ode to a Stilton

Mature and ripe, as Stilton cheese should taste,
It's full of flavour, creamy with a bite
Combined with pear and walnut in puff paste,
Dessert will be a special delight
When added to a dish of eggplant roast,
It can compete with roast beef anytime
For vegetarians a dream, no less
Pure heaven for the taste buds, it's no boast.
Tonight our dinner was indeed sublime
A feast for eyes and palate, I confess.

Leny Roovers



English or Keatsian Ode



Kathy Anderson

Last Hope
Prisoner
Unmarked Roads

Terry Clitheroe

Black Widow
Celestial Paths
How do I Love Thee
I am what I am
Kidding as Usual
Lost and Found
Mists of Time
Nuovo Viaggio
One Fine Day
Paparazzi
Questions of blame
Somewhere in Time
Xtremes
Zenobiotic, a Protest

Divena Collins

As You Like It
Dance of Love
Devout Loner
Eye of a Storm
Ode to Future Past
Ode to a Willow
Pressed Fairies
Scottish Widows
Speachless
Sweet Refrain
Tango to Evora
Woman Versus Man
Words of Fantasy
Ye Olde Sundial

Jez Farmer

From Sir with Love

Leny Roovers

Into the Light
Into Thy Silence
La Dame aux Camelias
Life in my Garden
Travelling to Italy
Two Faces of Love




Terry Clitheroe

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Black Widow

Have a drink my dear, nodding his head
Feeling victory, he touched her bare shoulder
Lost in his smile, believing each line he fed.
Grinning more as each touch became bolder.
She cried and cried and let him have his way
Her cries changed as she cried and cried again
Each climax each time the end justified the sin
Smiling knowing that in the end he would pay
With the dawn and last release he felt the pain
From her bite as her venom took life from him.



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Celestial Paths

Two lovers looked towards the sky and wished.
Thinking she'd granted them their wish they smiled,
And they walked along their paths now enriched.
The star, she did not intend the lovers to beguile.
Now years later the star looks down on them
Seeing her two friends looking up at her still.
She saw no change to the look in their eyes
Realizing each twinkle was a blessed gem
And it will be there forever or until
They become a star up in heavens skies.



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How do I love thee

How do I love thee? There are so many ways
I love thee for thy silence which says so much
And yet to do so I offer you so much praise
Whilst being rewarded by just a simple touch.
I love thee for thy patience and loving ways
How you look at me holding you, means so much
Doing this I feel and know I could never leave
In touching my heart responds with it's amaze
Now all I need once more is your touch
That more than anything is all I need to believe.
Thank you WS.



-----

I am what I am

I am what I am; there can be no other way
My will is strong in order to survive
I am still standing at the end of the day
While lesser men hardly know they’re alive.
For what is man but the ruler of all beasts?
My spear and shield is my mind and will of right
And while Jackals and carrion have a lesser food
The lesser men stir restlessly in their seats.
I win my feed and feast each day by might
I always sleep throughout the night so good.



-----

Kidding as Usual

Winter's almost around, yet there are sounds,
Sounds that Autumn will never be free,
Forecasts tell us she's still doing morning rounds
But during the day we look around and see.
Nor should it judging by frost in early morn
How often do these signs betray the facts
Late winter oft show signs of what's to be.
Believing an early spring will soon be shown
And then see birds carry out spring like acts,
With parrots screaming out look, look at me.

Look, the trees have only just lost their leaves
But already awake pretending a season sleep.
Birds are courting and nesting under my eaves
Other creatures emerging prematurely from sleep
Some trees too used to winters changing moods
Prefer to wait, after all they get chance to rest.
And whilst the imports flash their buds and hues
You see the experienced local tree standing nude.
Yet in six weeks will compete as a colourful best
And Jacarandas will provide really scenic views.



-----

Lost and Found

I lost my heart to a heart unknown
Hidden deep within my tangled mind
Around which has hard callous grown.
I did not look for love nor expect to find
On waking I think still of my heart
But now I can see that it is well,
Held in the hands of someone
Who was a stranger and now a part
Who gives a look to me as if to tell
"Your mine, together we are one".



-----

Mists of Time

Somewhere in the mists of time I met you
We shared wine and bread together you and I
And now each life I wait until our rendezvous.
And the songs sang will echo through eternity
Once again somewhere in time we shall meet
We will break bread, and from the wineglass sup
And sing our songs and speak our love in rhyme.
We will move in time and feet will tap the beat
And life's wine shared, more tasty with each cup
Knowing we'll meet again in the mists of time.



-----

Nuovo Viaggio

Soft winds blow o'er moonlit sheets of green
Leading from what was a familiar town,
To an unknown future, and places yet unseen,
Highlighting darker paths of what was brown.
The night darkens, the moon suddenly disappears
Clouds silently manoeuvre and reset the scene
Replaces carefree smile as rain suddenly beats down.
The coldness grows, the darkness creates fears
Swiftly removing pictures of what could have been.
And doubt enters the mind and on the face a frown

What was promise now seems lost in all the rain
A feeling that hopes and dreams have washed away
All chances to start anew at the start to this day,
Creating more fear to walk on this new path again.
But come the morn, a new site will again be seen,
Fresh scents will permeate all the bush and field
With once dull pastures shiny, refreshed withal.
As strong winds blow o'er sunlit sheets of green
The farmer can now believe in a fruitful yield
And drought starved trees will again stand tall.



-----

One Fine Day

One fine day my dreams will come true
As my lover walks to me out of the mist,
From that moment I will never again be blue
And heaven will resound once we have kissed.
Once in my arms we will love forever more
Reaching each fork along this new way
With only each other’s needs to pursue
Two united souls, with eternity to explore
Even black is just a darker shade of grey
One fine day my dreams will come true.

One fine day my dreams will come true
I will know this once we have kissed
No heaven nor Earth just that one view
Shared ever, triggered by one sweet kiss.
Just two mature lovers wanting more
And forevermore will be a time of bliss
Yet what we seek is nothing really new
Each room with a window has a door
And forevermore will be a time of bliss
One fine day my dreams will come true.



-----

Paparazzi

A Tarantella upon the written word,
Treadings once woven become a snare
Biased paragons of truth speak the absurd
Hammering non essentials til they swear
The innocent having to search for proof
Media portrays the predator as the prey
Pursuit of lies, and none events occur
Because the media bred all that is uncouth.
And read ignorance what the press portray
Thus non justice cause the blameless suffer.



-----

Questions of blame

What dreams that were born, transpired today?
Do they wait for the wind to whisper their name
Like a supermarket line on a busy day?
Are we all judged and treated the same
Or does that whispering wind play a game?
Is love just a vapour of some mystical smoke
And cupids arrow just a casual sticks strike
Or does he carefully select a pair and aim
In his knowing that true love is never a joke
And in the end the one to like or dislike.



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Somewhere in time

Somewhere in time two lovers kissed
Fate looked down and began to smile.
Recognising that true love exists
And so time stood still for just a while.
She is not heartless and never cruel
Seeing that this was indeed a jewel.
Somewhere in time the lovers wished
Separate upon the fullness of her rule
Fate realised to ignore would be cruel
Thus creating a mood of supreme bliss.

They wished that they could be united
And even more that it would be soon.
So fate stated they would not be parted
And spoke with her friend the moon.
Romantic at heart they couldn’t deny them
Fate then wrote down all of her plans
The moon and stars all witnessed this.
They looked and saw they had a gem
That was much more romantic than mans
As somewhere in time two lovers kissed.



-----

Xtremes

Oh Love, doest thou know thy brother Hate?
Nay! Please realise that he remembers thee;
His knowledge of thee could never dissipate.
That is no matter how ignorant thou dost be.
And shouldest thou seek, perchance, to expiate,
Whilst thou art modest, forgiving in thy decency
He would expunge it and blame thee for all crimes.
He was never ever known to mitigate,
Or wish to make amends for past inclemency
And that has been proven Oh so many times.



-----

Zenobiotic, a Protest

I have found myself, not that I was lost
More that I was tangled in the web of life
The spider of that life made me pay the cost
And just in time I was able to use a knife
To cut myself free and get back on my path.
Again I must withstand the vagaries of Fate
Even though its winter I must stand the frost
That disdainful breath of Fate and her wrath
And once again on her blessings I must wait
I have found myself, not that I was lost

I have found myself, not that I was lost
But I was an alien living in a foreign land
An icy world where there was eternal frost
Emotionless where everything was planned
Smiles were sought and friendship bought,
But what good are friends if you have to pay
And love came only at an exorbitant cost
Was it love or simply an expensive thought?
That in the end makes you rue that day
I have found myself, not that I was lost

I have found myself, not that I was lost
Corporations and politicians control on life
Again today I thought about all the cost.
The cost of oil, of terrorism and the strife
Global warming, ozone layers and such.
I cannot isolate myself, that IS a crime
Third the world is burning, another in frost,
There is all that flooding not leaving much
And such is the purpose of this rhyme
I have found myself, not that I was lost.



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Divena Collins

As You Like It

From this day to that there was no change
All was the same as it had been before
An open fire within an old black range
As it once was within past times of yore
Yet nobody had known much different
Life within past went slowly with ease
Nothing to complicate came unto mind
For all they once had was heaven sent
No other within harmony shall appease
But that quaint old cottage of it's kind

It takes two minds this may feel strange
Yet this was passion many years before
But past shall not have need to exchange
For future memories shall exist no more.
Wood in the woodyard stacked up as high
Growing as freely that all shall afford
Bleak cold winter's a thing of the past
The breath of spring may appear as a sigh
Warm winds blow within their own accord
But cold frosts of spring shall never last.



-----

Dance Of Lov

Come dance with me 'neath a starlit sky
Hold me, kiss me, excite me, as you do
Your words of passion I may cherish nigh
It may be I no longer a hunting shall go
Pray tell me that you love me this night
As I shall forever hold thee to my heart
This night is young come freely unto me
'Neath yon thicket we be away from sight
Excepting from Old Tom wi'his apple cart
His eyes are so blood shot he canna see.

Come touch me gentle give me your hand
Caress my skin with touches that linger
Do be gentle within haste I understand
A voice shall train to be a perfect singer
True love akin to a well trained soprano
Loud notes of wild crescendo's shall sigh
That reach thro` clouds to heaven above
From the rhythm of an ivory keyed piano
Where side by side notations of music lie
All because of that sensual dance of love.



-----

A Devout Loner

I may not be sworn to share my all
Then I may be known a devout lady
I shall not encourage suitors to call
Upon my own I remain most shady
For I have needs to be purely alone
I have no will to entertain strangers
Never to invite them just for a chat
I do not need to answer my phone
For gossip may be a sign of danger
What I know may be the end of that.

No one shall knock my door at night
I do not encourage any of the gossip
That tongues may repeat out of spite
I may forever keep my stiff upper lip
Yet I can listen to all I keep to myself
As a loner is all I ever yearned to be
And shall not listen to gossip untold
That`s already been stored on a shelf
For new prattle shall never be for me
When new are only echoes from old.


You Have Been Warned.

-----

Eye of a Storm

So hot and sultry is a summer time storm
Casts never a breeze that cools us down
Within a sultry moment of natures form
Too humid to bear the spreading of down
Within the touch of a lover warm hands
The feeling of a long white silken gown
Shall forever tempt the heat of the night
As lightening strikes her final demands
When thunder rolls dark clouds as shown
Yet the temperature shall ne-er be right.

Sparks of temptation may greet the eyes
Casting dark shadows of the unbeknown
Until streaks of lightening light the skies
When an inner passion shall be as shown
But the finality of storms may extinguish
Leaving the turmoil for sensual opinions
That shall be forever a part of the planet
Which may be not all thought as anguish
Storms are inevitable to set love reeling
From past to future's stormy dominions.



-----

Ode To Future Past

Oh warm South wind come blow this day
Take the place of the past winter season
Let the breeze sweep the cobwebs away
Thou hath returned for a seasonal reason
Cast not the spring dust 'neath the mat
Nor to beat them up against the wall
Spring cleaning shall be that of the past
For future technology shall end all that
So soon shall we be able to forget it all
When past times shall ever be outcast.

Lets return to the field of natures glory
Only when the tractors are on the blink
Peace and tranquillity is another story
At least we have a time there to think
A time to look at all of natures wonders
Much more serene to relax for a while
Within old charm of earth giving nature
That time itself shall not cast asunder
Thro' meadows of green over the style
Blessed be within a mellowed pasture.



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Ode to a Willow

Oh Willow trees that sway in a breeze
How speedily thou hath recovered
When winds of time swept within ease
Blowing thy boughs that had tethered
No strength of will may save a disaster
When none but thy trunk lay bereft
With the trail of wind swept leaves
That had piled upon earth there after
I thought then there was no hope left
It is not only the willow that grieves.

But fate being kind to broken boughs
That once harboured wildlife to be
Within mother nature canopy of vows
That this sheltered tree shall be free
As freely as a northern wind may stop
Time shalt come once again to thrive
When broken boughs may surely mend
What had been wildest storms that lop
Shall once more in future return alive
'Tis a strong will that returns to amend.



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Pressed Fairies

The same old place I dont want to be
There are times that I need a change
I once was a fairy pressed never free
In a book that most thought strange
But that was just to be so amusing
Many times i wish I was just a leaf
Blown down as the winds of thyme
Tho' this to you may be as confusing
A leaf may wither life shall be brief
Yet pressed fairys survive thro time.

May it be what folk call just a novelty
A must have is all that they are after
It shall be nothing more than an entity
An object perhaps to induce laughter
Those who are so naive shall not see
The hurt and pain that suffers within
Pressed between two closed leaves
When faeries were meant to be free
How can folk be united within this sin
When the heart of a fairy still grieves.



-----

Scottish Widows

Cast a sad eye upon a heart that's broken
Never to return to the Scottish highlands
Battles of past 'twas future years spoken
Nothing left but broken wedding bands
And an ancient cross that marks the place
Where the clansmen lost their final quirk
Many a bitter tear`had their widows shed
Clad within a black veil to cover her face
They prayed for lost souls within the kirk
And the hungry mouths of bairns unfed.

But battles of past shall be that of glory
Won for the future of each generation
That shall be then a part of past history
For each and every old Scottish relation
Time only shall tell if it shall forever be
Remembered as it was within the past
When men were warriors brave and bold
Born within past to the highlands as free
Generations shall follow a future`s cast
But Scottish Widows shall remain as old.



-----

Speechless

When love had touched my heart
Who was I to resist the temptation
For my emotions had torn me apart
Yet in turn had experienced elation
I remain still in awe and speechless
Time has past yet I never shall forget
When he kissed why had I trembled
T'was only thrills of a sensual caress
I shall recall when the moon had set
To awaken speechless upon my bed.

I am not a one that talks too much
But I shall not miss the temptation
Tongues they say may finally touch
There shall be not much hesitation
But who has needs to talk anyway
All may be spoken in a lovers eyes
When the shadows may show clear
Speechless shall remain as far away
Whispering when temperatures arise
Only to cool down at end of the day.



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A Sweet Refrain

Green the meadows of golden times
Blessed with wild flowers there within
Far in the distance church bells chime
Over the style steps a maid with no sin
Alone she wanders thro' ripened fields
There in the serenity of peace unbroken
She sings a song thro' the winds of time
Unto country scene`s her instinct yields
Within the silence of rhymes unspoken
Blessed be youth touched within prime.



-----

Tango To Evora

The right way to tango with left foot behind,
Swayed back and forth within rhythmic flow
They say the dance of love shall be of a kind
The beat of the moment may ever be slow
Within an exquisite dance of utter fantasy
That only slow notes shall arise to a climax
Changing to speed from an uneven tempo
Twisting wrything, of bodies within ecstasy
It takes two to Tango yet takes all to show
How to relax within arms of deep harmony .

When tempo's raise unto dramatic tones
The severity of temperatures raise above
As orchestral music whines and bemoans
Within their bemused crescendo of love
The orchestral melody calms them down
Within the warmth of a deep red sunset
And the scent of the past summer grove
Whafts thro the air upon meadows sown
Where lovers lay where the barley wove
Exhausted by their dance as ever known.



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Woman Verses Man

How can a woman love with a broken heart
When the hurt shall ever ache deep within
It shall be then that both shall ever depart
For even in friendship love shall never win
Tears shall flow within her deepest sorrow
Uncontrollable sadness prevails with tears
There is no solace within a broken promise
That shall forever feel the pain tomorrow
Forgiveness shall never amend those fears
Nor halt the flow of tears from woeful eyes.

Yet her man may walk away free from pain
He who hath set out within all of his might
Within all his masculine authority to gain
For what man does to a woman is his right
He who has no sympathy for tears that fall
'Tis only he may not repent unto fears
For consoling a woman may not be manly
She might have a weep says he that's all
But within the night as darkness appears
It may be she that is closer upon final call.



-----

Words Of Fantasy

I hear his words of love within my sleep
So composed to me upon a poetic dream
It is dreams like this that shall ever keep
But dreams are only a vision it may seem
Yet his words and touch had felt so real
No image can I possibly imagine as such
No fantasy that was ever brought to mind
I only know deep within that I could feel
A glow within to grace his sensual touch
Shall it be real or only fantasies of a kind.

Love is like an open book that reads as true
Pages turn to chapters for the right reason
Fantasies of passion so often tread askew
Where only nightmares darken the season
But the morning sun may decide to awaken
To reveal all within that shall ever be loved
Sleepless eyelids shall then remain as open
Welcoming in the dawns light now mistaken
For an inner warmth that bid true love abed
Let no one put asunder sweet dreams taken.



-----

Ye Olde Sundial

How do you tell a sundials time when it rains
When the sun hides behind darkened clouds
May we rely on dandelions or weather vanes
Or atmospheric mists within darker shrouds
Shall this then mean time may be timeless
If endless days and endless nights are void
Pressure of wind storms may not over crowd
Within oceanic waters that shall never caress
There may be no pendulum to strike out loud
'Tis only of natures existance time shall bless.

But then again there is the human bodies clock
Much more accurate than mechanism ever was
For when hunger strikes then mechanism locks
His inner senses are a much accurate cause
When the night is dark his need is to sleep
He need no reminder when tiredness provides
His night is long there is great needs to pause
Slumber has no special timing he should keep
For as he awakens then darkness withdraws
To arise as the beautiful dawning doth peep.



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Jem Farmer

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Kathy Anderson

Prisoner

of the Monday blues
Sunday pews I no longer visit now
times I've fallen or been used
like the nothing life has shown me how
to give and do without loves attendance.
of the Tuesday rains
Wednesday brought another hill
to climb upon for no higher chance
than times shadow passages gain
a bitter brew to swallow one more pill.

-----

Last Hope

for a new perception,
a rhyming that isn't over used
to tell the stories inspiration
was me only me as the abused
accused and screwed down
into whatever position seems right,
rightly likely as a fool
is always the clown
sewn up and closed shut out of sight,
all hope is but a tool.

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Unmarked Roads

born halfway there on life's road
paths diverged yet I trudged my own way,
ways discovered by where feet strode
striding this way and that in todays
present moments always the same,
similarly unique shades of dark
flowing black with white untamed
taming the ground trod, I swayed,
like the trees in the breezes mark
lightning and rain double roads unnamed.

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Leny Roovers

Into the Light

We went to pay our last respects today
A special lady, ninety years of age,
The mother of a friend, had passed away.
Her book of life had turned the final page,
Though just last year she'd published her own book
Which tells about her look upon this life -
By breathing right, people found life again.
Apart from being mother, wife and cook,
She'd always sought to lessen others' strife;
Her heart's garden would help her fellow men.



-----

Into Thy Silence

I listen to the silence behind sound
It is the stage on which each play is shown;
without its presence, we would all be drowned
In waves of roaring noise we’d soon bemoan.
This solitude I seek sustains my soul,
brings freedom in my mind and quiets thoughts -
it is a beacon on my way within.
Serenity enfolds me, makes me whole;
while peacefulness helps to untie old knots,
I feel your gentle whisper on my skin.

When life has been fulfilled the curtains close
and silence will transcend the laws of flesh;
our soul retreats to join the realm she chose
where clear blue skies and gentle winds refresh.
Within my heart I build a shrine for Thee,
here roses without thorns will bloom al year,
protected by your presence and your grace.
Your silence is my haven in the lee,
my refuge in a world beset by fear;
I'm finding peace within your pure embrace.



-----

La Dame aux Camelias

We went to theatre last night to see
La Dame aux Camelias as a ballet.
In grand performance we watched bourgeoisie
Mix with noblesse, forbidden love and play.
Marguerite, a famous odalisque
Fell desperately in love with her Armand.
His father was afraid to mar his name
and called at Marguerite, at home and sick -
to cause a break-up of the lovers' bond.
After her death both men felt shame and blame.



-----

Life in my garden

My trees are wearing summer frocks today
thin, see-through veils of shining green and reds,
some decorated with pink blossoms' spray
while pear and hawthorn bear white flowered heads.
The apple tree shows countless rosy buds,
all promise me as many juicy fruit,
at least, if left alone by parakeets.
Those noisy guests in their green feathered duds
have an unhealthy appetite and loot
my apples, long before they're ripe and sweet.



-----

Travelling to Italy

I'm looking forward to our time abroad
Next Tuesday we will fly to Italy
To see the sights of Pompeii, be awed
by frescoes in Villa dei Misteri.
It will be warm, already summer there,
Herculaneum we can reach by train,
see with our own eyes what we read about
at our art history lessons, compare
recently restored beauty that remains
since Vesuvius completely blacked out.



-----

Two Faces of Love

Love can be fragile as a bird's soft wing
Yet strong enough to lift you in the air
As in your heart love's music starts to sing -
You see a whole new future you will share.
Love gives you days when life moves in a flow
Of balanced understanding filled with joy,
With paradise right at your fingertips.
Then, suddenly, it brings a different show
As egos raise their ugly heads, destroy
Sweet peace with cutting words that strike like whips.

Like disturbed snails we each retreat inside,
Not daring to show our weaker spots.
Now time is needed to let pain subside
and carefully untangle tightened knots.
The walls we built so quickly to protect,
Will have to be dismantled stone by stone,
The first ones are the hardest to take down.
Defences lowering, we can connect
Once more, explain hurt feelings and atone
Until we can relax our inner frown.



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