2019 Poetry Form Challenge

#15 Terza Rima

The Terza Rima is a wonderfully challenging poetry form of Italian origin. In the original form, there was no set meter although it is normal to keep a constant syllable count and line length. In the modern version the syllables are accentuated and usually iambic tetrameter or pentameter.
Lines 1 and 3 rhyme with each other and line 2 sets the rhyme for the next stanza. There can be any number of tercets or three line stanzas and it is a matter of preference whether you link back to the first stanza or not.
If there is no link back, it's normal to terminate with a couplet that rhymes with the previous stanza.
The rhyme patterns are ....a. b. a...b. c. b... c. d. c. etc finishing
x. a. x. or, x. x.

Sweet Thunder

Such sweet, heavenly thunder as we kiss
my heart pounding loudly thumping
as our mouths unite in heavenly bliss.

Such sweet thunder, your heart beating
as our hands explore the pulsing heat
Pressing wildly against me throbbing.

Uniting, filling, moving to the loving beat
Eyes half lidded as my hands caress you
Thrusting hard against me, bodies meet.

Whimpering, crying as tremors run through
Hugging closely through descending hotness
Hearts still beating, beating, loving, true.

Ryter Roethicle

In the example above you can see that Ryter chose to link the last stanza back to the first one and in the example below Helen finished in the traditional way.


Reflections dance as if alive in water of today
remembrances of passion ripple a happy laugh
but the surface of existence foretells no happy way.

Entranced I fantasize a spark within the dark
of hope perhaps beginning but soon to disappear
as stealthy hands of time close around a heart.

Derision from behind implants the stone of fear
and indistinct the image veers from an inner need
outward to the corners of the hurting hidden tier.

No longer strong and bold it lives amongst the reeds
Fed in absence now only by casual seeds

Helen Howel
It is pretty obvious that using the basic format of the Terza Rima, four tercets and a couplet add up to 14 lines, the basic requirements for a sonnet. If the Terza Rima is presented as a sonnet it should be as a 14 consecutive line form and not as tercets and a couplet. Examples of Terza Rima Sonnets

Terza Rima Challenge

Terry Clitheroe

Another Place
Conditioned by Eternity
Good Night My Muse
Fair Winds
How Often
I am September
Question - Experiment
Unquiet Thoughts
Response I
Response II
Response III

Divena Collins

Autumn to Spring
A Little Bit More
Instinctive Passion
Lavender Vs Mosquitos
May It Be
Oer Hill and Dale
Of Natures Gifts
Paths of Old
Rise And Fall Of Nature
Sounds of Silence
Truly Within Fantasy
Vientos Justos
What is Love

Terry Clitheroe

Another Place

In another place, in some other time
Beyond our reach is a land of fantasy
A perfect place with a perfect clime.

Where all our hopes and wishes to be
And all we scheme and wish and dare
Live their only in our dreams to see

And every night they're waiting there
For us to see again refreshed and new
A kaleidoscope of life's rich fare.

Our bodies perfect, strong and true
No lust and hunger to satisfy
A land of love where all's true blue

So each night as on your beds you lie

Remember all things about this time
Just relax and let your cares go by.


Conditioed by Eternity

Each life we meet as strangers; it is always so
Unfamiliar with each other like each time before,
We must learn again, and touch, and feel, and grow.

Strangers, yet sensing familiar at our soul's core
Haunted by memories that are gauzy and unformed
Touch of eyes rivets, hands reach to explore.

This life we met, by my heart I was informed
That you and I are together again as one
So much tells me so, my senses are swarmed.

I'm surprised we meet, my quest for love is done
In your eyes I see something that I already know
Beneath this wall, my heart may be hard won.

We have had many together since so long ago
Memories and pictures occasion in the mind
Thus allowing our past to help our love grow.

Still holding hands keeping our love secure
Unknown paths we must travel sans compass
Knowing we're secure with each life's closure.

I wonder, if this life is this to be our opus
And if during it our souls create a symphony
Or worse part in discord leaving another mess.

We can only try and share each others company
Ignoring the past and start to love as new mortal
And letting Fate decide. What will be will be.

I dreamed we would travel through portals
A dream that ordinary lovers could not find
But I see now to you, it was merely anecdotal.

Holding hands as together we try to find
The secret of an Eternity we could share
United like this we are no longer blind.

Knowing how you feel I wonder whether
You have been conditioned by a society
That deems we be tied by thongs of leather.


Fair Winds

Fair winds and good fortune beckons us all
But things we see around are images, no more
When love in her glory finally makes her call.

The soul is the vessel with which love doth haul
Sailing on the seas which life in constant pours
Doors which once opened there is no recall.

The relentless sea always recreating the shores
Trying to make each life, each love a peaceful time
But winds like storm, or calm, offer other doors.

Making life a journey, giving a reason to explore
A constant search each life in fates dark hall
Meeting for a long time, always wishing more.

Sometimes like this one our time will be so small
And things we see around are images, no more
We are together for Eternity when comes that call.


Good Night My Muse

It is now that special time of night
My writing is just returning from a scrawl
The mood is softened by wine and light.

There is no time or need to think at all
Now almost as if it was written by a ghost
The muse has me and taken o'er control.

She reminds me of the past and loves lost
Now another whose virtues I will extol
Knowing thus, gladly will I meet the cost.

Now at last a love that makes me whole
One who has given me a new point of view
And I know too well has touched my soul.

The music is softer now, thinking of you
Even more the wine has softened the mood
There is just one final act I have to do.

My last thought "I love you" I have to say.


How Often

How often do we punish the one we love?
Words said in heat, more poison than snakes
Pouring out pure venom from above.

And with the morning our conscience shakes
Wishing that we could pull back every word
And repair the scars and fix heartbreaks.

And our loved one says, "don't be absurd"
"I forgive", but in her voice you hear the pain
And from her tone, something else is heard.

How quickly she turns away, and hides again
You reach for her and take her in your arms
And gently turn her to you and see the strain

Behind her smile, but know there's no harm
Nor will there ever be once you see her smile
Naught can't be fixed by this woman's charm.


I am September

The mood is mellow and I am September
So little time and still so many things to do
I cannot regret one thing that I remember.

Every morning I awake to challenges new
For it has made me what I am, content for now
There are things that changed my point of view!

Some not as yet, I will see what I can allow
Remember I'm September and time's everything
Winter will come soon and I'll take my final bow.

I do not fear sleep, for I shall wake in spring
But will that spring find me alone once again
Will I forget or remember everything.

In finding you, share our seasons once again?
The mood is mellow and I am September
I know our time together hasn't been in vain.



Why does the wind howl so loud at night
When all the world is locked in slumber
Or seemingly to have fled in fright?

The streets all empty, damp and sombre
Contrasting colours merely white and black
With yellow street lamps turning puddles umber.

Why do night creatures prowl a relentless track
Leaving nothing safe in their search for food
And seeking unwary victims to attack?

Dark alleys breed festering deeds of no good
Storing the mortal sins of mankind
In garbage cans that hide hypocrisy and falsehood.

Why when it is darkest is it most unkind
The driving pain that wakes the deepest sleep
Making hours of thought swirling in the mind?

With the dull grey dawn and mind all in a heap
The lethargic body prepares for the daily fight
Ready to return later and the nocturnal vigil keep.



Ancient home fires beckon bright
Eternity awaits the weary soul
Rest, peace to comfort in that light.

Is this to be our final goal
The truth lies within that shadow
Ultimate reality the final role?

Or do we merely wish it so?
Shadow of death becoming whole
The truth is what we should know.

The purpose of life enlarges the soul
To reach out for truth, seek the light
In darkness we cannot see the goal

Then see home fires beckon bright.
Each life an upwards climb to Nirvana
Death is the truth we must not fight!



I am who I am, there can be no other way
While lesser men hardly know they're alive
I am still standing at the end of the day.

My will is strong in order to survive
And while other men kneel down to pray
Against all odds and down, my spirit will revive.

Like the eagle I will spread my wings and soar
For what is man but the ruler of all beasts
And like the king they are silenced by my roar.

Whilst jackals and carrion have a lesser feasts
My spear and shield is my mind and will of right
While lesser men stir restlessly in their seats.

I win my feed and feast each day by might
I am still standing at the end of the day.
Closing my eyes to sleep through the night.


Question - Experiment

And how must we greet the morn
I came to you because of dreams
Will my dreams now fit the dawn?

Are you part of my fates schemes?
Or just that our lives have crossed?
I came to you because of dreams

Two boats met on life's ocean tossed
Join together and share their load
Or just that our lives have crossed?

You now walk with me on my road
Knowing this life is a day in time
Join together and share their load

Towards Nirvana together we climb
Or do we part at dark, and wave goodbye
Knowing this life is a day in time

Is it really worthwhile this time to try
Will my dreams now fit the dawn?
Or do we part at dark, and wave goodbye?

El arte de Kagaya



How stupid! What kind of fool am I
That when I tell you that I love you
I should expect a movement of your eye

Your heartbeat to give a single clue
When I tell you what you need to hear
A few simple words to lift my blue

Commit to love there's naught to fear
To tell my lover of my love so strong
Oh that moment waited will never near

Faint heart in love was ever wrong
To stand and wish and merely sigh
In my foolish mood I wait too long

How stupid! What kind of fool am I
I should expect a movement of your eye.



See as we walk the way the shadows hold hands
The way they blend and merge as we wander
Sun creating black images out of golden bands

Making them more real than us we wonder.
Look, see how they unite, the way they blend
And having joined cannot be pulled asunder

What is reality? Is it to this we ascend
An absence of body is this what reality means
How they merge so, no overlap they transcend

This unity of souls this apotheosis of scenes
Not black images, but souls laid out leading us
to where non physical self is what life means

Would that we were they, to join without fuss
And as we walk see our souls holding hands
A unity of mind and souls, I wish it were thus.


Unquiet Thoughts

Sunrise does not a summer make
Nor does the sunset say goodnight
The two whilst the same journey take

Have very different heights of flight.
The red sun we love to see with setting day
Is considered the shepherds delight

And the sailor also feels the same way
He has no need of storms and the like
Not even objecting to a sky that's grey

What he fears is the lightning's strike
Foamy seas and the mountainous wave
The spiralling foam and twirling spike.

This kind of thing does the sailor brave
Strong winds, high seas and rocky cliffs
Or in failing finds an early watery grave.


Vientos Justos

Fair winds and good fortune beckons us all
But things we see around are images, no more
When love in her glory finally makes her call.

The soul is the vessel with which love doth haul
Sailing on the seas which life in constant pours
Doors which once opened there is no recall.

The relentless sea always recreating the shores
Trying to make each life, each love a peaceful time
But winds like storm, or calm, offer other doors.

Making life a journey, giving a reason to explore
A constant search each life in fates dark hall
Meeting for a long time, always wishing more.

Sometimes like this one our time will be so small
And things we see around are images, no more
We are together for Eternity when comes that call.


Emily Dickinson Challenge


Response I

A Book

There is no frigate like a book
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.

This traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot
That bears a human soul!

Emily Dickinson


Who would compare a book of poetry
With a ship that would transport you
Anywhere you wanted to be.

But when there would you see that view
And what of the time taken to get there
Poetry gives you a much tastier brew.

Would you say prancing poetry is rare,
What poem does not have tempo or beat,
Or when you read your feelings lay bare?

There is naught at all for you to defeat
The poems your chariot enjoy your ride
For what you read your emotions meet.


Response II


I held a Jewel in my fingers-
And went to sleep-
The day was warm, and winds were prosy-
I said 'Twill keep'-

I woke-and chid my honest fingers,
The Gem was gone-
And now, an Amethyst remembrance
Is all I own-

Emily Dickinson


How many times have you dozed
In the afternoon sun holding a ray
Against your heart, on waking froze.

On waking found it'd flown away?
The evening cool caused you to wake
You pray you'll see it another day.

Now preparation for night time make
And as you doze remember and pray
Who knows what steps tomorrow will take.


Response III


The spider as an artist
Has never been employed
Though his surpassing merit
Is freely certified

By every broom and Bridget
Throughout a Christian land.
Neglected son of genius,
I take thee by the hand.

Emily Dickinson


In summer I see her work every night
As soon as it is dark she'll build again
Birds must not know about her site.

So this Queen creates the place she'll reign
For just a short while she will please us
A wish for her to stay is all in vain.

The following summer there is no fuss
A new Queen will reign, another not far away
I consider now to be many times blessed.

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Divena Collins

Autumn To Spring

Sleep comes easy for an autumn season
Like the flowers when petals fade away
For a future rebirth shall be the reason.

Like a maiden who sleeps at end of day
Whose dreams may never be forgotten
For within the spring her all may display.

Her petals return like the silk of cotton
Pale are the pastel hues of the spring
Within seeds of past now as besotten.

Each and every day she may ever bring
An aromatic scent of sweet columbine
Tears may cry but the heart shall sing .

Love is rather like the fruits of the vine
For every season shall provide as such
There is no truer than of a love divine .

Seasons come and may go out of touch
But love shall return within all seasons
Of affection may never have too much.


Instinctive Passion

I see not I touch not nor do I speak
Yet I have feelings so deep within
No other senses shall I ever seek.

But I have instincts that seek no sin
Which makes me love like no other
I cannot lose but forever I shall win.

With my affection I shall not smother
Yet I may caress with a tender touch
That forever bonds us both together.

Tho' I shall not force this love as such
And may only satisfy an inner desire
I cannot emphasize my feelings much.

I can only describe my warmth as fire
That flickers within a fiery hot flame
Which eventually may soon transpire.

Both instincts shall never be the same
Only I may be the one that weakens
But then I only had instinct to blame.


Lavender V Mosquitos

A bouquet of lavender fills the air
Within a patch of herbal remedies
Mosquitos shall never linger there.

Such within a fact that never dies
And shall through the ages release
Such a nutrient within false disguise.

Thro' the ages this shall not cease
Herbs of past we may ever cherish
Upon scents that defend to please

Some say the scent is rather girlish
Man shall never agree to all as such
To be a mosquito or else a tasty wish.

Spoils of nature that matter so much
Man within hunger and an empty dish
May never harm a mosquito nor touch.


A Little Bit More

I think I have had too much to drink
Because I am acting a wee bit crazy
My eyes are hazy and on the brink

Maybe my eyes are tired and lazy
I never experienced this before
But then my memory is so hazy

Only a drunkard know`s the score
Shall I be the one to suffer shame
Already I refuse to drink no more

But I only have myself to blame
Oh what the heck I had lots of fun
So tomorrow I shall do the same.


May It Be

What does she see in her crystal ball
That foresee`s the future of fortunes
Upon a spiritual globe fate may recall.

Silent the night of the double moons
So full and bright as spirits awaken
Within a cobult sky of shady lagoons.

Misted moon beams of dust shaken
Casting true predictions for a future
As the star of wisdom shall be taken.

What rains from the sky may be pure
A blessing within the heavenly cloud
That shall never the real truth obscure.

Let not fortune of past hide in a shroud
For better or worse shall never be truer
As Prophesies flash then thunder is loud.

Double Moon

O'er Hill And Dale

I climbed all over hills and dale
Yet no sign of life should I find
Within a strong northern gale.

That left my hazy eyes as blind
There was nothing I could see
But of visions within my mind.

What I saw was that of the free
Of storms that decieve the eye
As prisms of nature bound me

Cast not a breeze within a sigh
Time may be still that ends all
Only to hear the wild beast cry.

Beckoned unto the natural call
That may echo forth once more
As hills of the north stand tall.

Let life remain upon earths core
With visions of peace there after.
Reaching from shore unto shore

O'er Hill And Dale - Constable


Of Natures Gifts

To dream upon a meadow softly green
Within the warmth of a summer morn
Where gently flows the lake so serene.

Whispering sheathes of ripened corn
Within morning breeze shall waken
The aroma's of natures scents inborn.

Aromatic seeds from ferns are shaken
Upon scattered cones of scented pine
Received by a maiden but never taken.

She who awakes to the birth of nature
Shall return again as many times before
Each and every time charmed in stature.


Paths of Old

When young we trip the light fantastic
Rhythm and blues was then our scene
Within days of suspenders and elastic.

Rock and Roll was the next to be seen
Plucking guitars to rhythm and blues
Those were the days of sweet sixteen.

Elvis and Bill Haley were ours to chose
Oh what fun we all had way back then
All of our fellas wore blue suede shoes.

Fashion shall forever return once again
But the aged may rock and roll no more
Yet those memories shall not be in vain.

Tho' old and grey they take to the floor
With a vigour that out lasts their years
As they had done so many times before.

Let not age distract the aged nor tears
For they may be as young as they feel
All they need do is to oil those gears.

from Shadows Of The Past



Once I saw a blackbird with a sparrows wings
I thought it was purely my imagination
But natural instinct may prove many things.

Inbreeding may speculate future migration
Who knows what goes on within their heart
Whether it shall be true or only speculation.

Birds of the past are all from breeds apart.
Only time may tell which belongs to who
Which may easily upset the genetic chart.

Not only of birds but of past animals too
What we have today shall be past history
And may soon be preserved within a zoo.

Today this shall be naught but a mystery
Only time may tell if this remains as true

Or maybe just a supernatural chemistry.


Rise And Fall Of Nature

Calm the ocean waves upon this day
Though high was what they forecast
Nobody gets this right folk shall say.

The oceanic waves shall rise so fast
Who may know what is meant to be
It depends on waves future or past.

The oceanic pressure is ever as free
To rise and to fall with the weather
Patience is lost for humanity to see.

Natural instincts we share together
Which shall ever be all of the same
Most tarred with the same feather

Oceanic pressures are seldom tame
Natures catastrophies may all sever
Yet mother nature takes the blame.


Sounds Of Silence

All is quiet can you hear the silence
Do you hear the air that you breathe
Peaceful sounds of a quiet defence.

Hear the petals fall from a wreathe
Floating down softly alike a feather
Unto a soft mound of earth beneath.

There is no sound from calm weather
For peace within shall forever be free
Within haunting silence now and ever.

There is no sounds that eyes can see
Nor shall it break the peaceful barrier
For sounds of silence shall forever be.

Yet peaceful emotion shall be a carrier
For dreams of noise may never agree
Peaceful times that cast no amplifier.


Truly Within Fantasy

If I was a mermaid sitting by the Ocean
I may sit on a rock and look out to sea
To find deep within my inner emotion.

I just know I would find the inner me
If I may only speak with the dolphins
I shall be at peace within and as free

For creatures of the ocean ever wins
But it is I that may not be in favour
For all I can do is just wiggle my fins.

To float upon waves I dare not savour
I am a serpent that clings to the rocks
Within the ocean I have no will power

I have no limbs to take an inland walk
And no compassion for fish to devour
I shant befriend those who cannot talk.

Yet I am never without true fantasies
Though false within they may be free
Hence reality then becomes falsities.


What Is Love

May it be just a twitch within the eye
Or was it he that was winking at me
I cant for the life of me think why.

But within my faults flattered I be
They do say that lovers are blind
Tho' I shall happily say he can see.

But whatever goes within his mind
That only he may hide or reveal
He has various ways of another kind.

Seduction shall be of an even keel
Depends on what mood they are in
Or what she might cook for his meal .

Love shall for ever lose or else win
It all depends upon the inner mood
That shall maybe just save your skin.

Do not get me wrong for love is good
Most shall come to mutual decisions
All lovers need is to be understood.

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