Worksheets for Forms

If you or your students would like to try some of the forms in Spinning Through the Universe and Keesha's House here are some worksheets that may help.


You are welcome to make copies for yourself and your students.


 
 

Sestina

Note: this is one of the more difficult forms. You may want to try a tritina first (see below).

Examples: Poems in sections I, II, IV, V, and VII in Keesha's House

by Helen Frost (Frances Foster Books, FSG, 2003)

and

"Make a Few Adjustments" Page 9 in Spinning Through the Universe

by Helen Frost (Frances Foster Books, FSG, 2004)

Rules of the form:

*A 39-line poem with a pattern of repeating end-words, six 6-line stanzas and one 3-line stanza called an envoi.

*Six words repeat in a particular order as the end-words of each 6-line stanza.

*The same six words are used once each in the envoi, one within each line, and one at the end of each line.

*The order of the end-words (each letter stands for a word) in the 6-line stanzas is: abcdef, faebdc, cfdabe, ecbfad, deacfb, bdfeca.

*Many poets use the end-words in any order in the envoi, but the traditional order is: be, dc, fa.


Sestina Worksheet (I suggest you copy this into a word document and double space it. This will take 2 pages.)

__________________________________________________ a

__________________________________________________ b

__________________________________________________ c

__________________________________________________ d

__________________________________________________ e

__________________________________________________ f


__________________________________________________ f

__________________________________________________ a

__________________________________________________ e

__________________________________________________ b

__________________________________________________ d

__________________________________________________ c


__________________________________________________ c

__________________________________________________ f

__________________________________________________ d

__________________________________________________ a

__________________________________________________ b

__________________________________________________ e


__________________________________________________ e

__________________________________________________ c

__________________________________________________ b

__________________________________________________ f

__________________________________________________ a

__________________________________________________ d


__________________________________________________ d

__________________________________________________ e

__________________________________________________ a

__________________________________________________ c

__________________________________________________ f

__________________________________________________ b


__________________________________________________ b

__________________________________________________ d

__________________________________________________ f

__________________________________________________ e

__________________________________________________ c

__________________________________________________ a


________________________________________________ b, e

________________________________________________ d, c

________________________________________________ f, a

 
 

Tritina

Example: Grandma Keeps Forgetting

Page 6 in Spinning Through the Universe

by Helen Frost (Frances Foster Books, FSG, 2004)

Rules for Tritina form:

*Ten-line poem

*Three 3-line stanzas and one 1-line stanza.

*The endwords (last words in the lines) repeat in this pattern:

________________________________________Word A

________________________________________Word B

________________________________________Word C

________________________________________Word C

________________________________________Word A

________________________________________Word B

________________________________________Word B

________________________________________Word C

________________________________________Word A

_________________________________Words ABandC

(Use all three words in the last line.)

 
 

Raccontino

Example: My People

Page 30 in Spinning Through the Universe

by Helen Frost (Frances Foster Books, FSG, 2004)

Rules of the form:

* Any number of couplets (2-line stanzas).

* Even numbered lines end on the same rhyme.

* The title, followed by the last words of the odd numbered lines, tells a story.

Title _________________ (First words of story)

____________________________________________ (story)

____________________________________________ (rhyme)

____________________________________________ (story)

____________________________________________ (rhyme)

____________________________________________ (story)

____________________________________________ (rhyme)

____________________________________________ (story)

____________________________________________ (rhyme)

____________________________________________ (story)

____________________________________________ (rhyme)

____________________________________________ (story)

____________________________________________ (rhyme)

(etc.--the poem can be any number of couplets long)

 
 

Villanelle

Example: Ten

Page 28 in Spinning Through the Universe

by Helen Frost (Frances Foster Books, FSG, 2004)

Rules of the form:

*A 19-line poem, with five 3-line stanzas and one 4-line stanza.

*The first and third lines rhyme throughout the poem.

*The middle lines of each 3-line stanza rhyme throughout the poem.

*The first and third lines of the first stanza repeat as a refrain

throughout the poem, in this pattern:

line (rhyme) /refrain

A1 refrain

b

A2 refrain

a

b

A1 refrain

a

b

A2 refrain

a

b

A1 refrain

a

b

A2 refrain

a

b

A1 refrain

A2 refrain

 
 

Pantoum

Example: Who, Me?

Page 16 in Spinning Through the Universe

by Helen Frost (Frances Foster Books, FSG, 2004)

Rules of the form:

*Any number of quatrains (4-line stanzas), each rhyming abab.

*The second and fourth lines of each stanza repeat as the first and third lines of the following stanza.

*The poem can end with the first and third lines of the first stanza repeated in reverse order as a 2-line stanza, so the poem begins and ends with the same line.

________________________________________________A1

________________________________________________B1 ________________________________________________A2 ________________________________________________B2


________________________________________________B1 ________________________________________________C1 ________________________________________________B2 ________________________________________________C2


________________________________________________C1 ________________________________________________D1 ________________________________________________C2 ________________________________________________D2


(continue for as many stanzas as you wish)

________________________________________________A2

________________________________________________A1