65 Syllable Poetry Forms

👩🏻‍🦳 For my 65th birthday, I asked poets to create a form with 65 syllables. Here are the forms they created with examples. All of these forms are copyrighted by their creators. This post only includes the new forms. If you want to read all of the birthday poetry please find the links below:

1.ben Alexander10.Elizabeth19.Mark Bozeman
2.AJ11.Li/ Lisa20.D. L. Finn
3.Jane Dougherty12.D. Avery21.Balroop Singh
4.Gwen Plano13.Echoes of the soul22.willowdot21
5.Sangeetha14.Luanne Castle23.ladyleemanila
6.Paula Light15.Yvette M Calleiro24.Ruth Klein
7.Reena Saxena16.Ken Hume25.The Versesmith
8.Melissa Lemay17.Kerfe26.kittysverses
9.Chu on This18.Jules27.You’re next!

65 Syllable Poetry

Birthday Cake

The Birthday Cake (1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9/10/11/-1) by Aishwarya. She said, “I tried to do a birthday cake syllable poetry form for Colleen’s Birthday Challenge, wherein the syllable count be 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11, which exceeded her syllable count requirement of 65 syllables, so I replaced the last word in brackets which could be denoted as -1 in mathematics, and would also serve the syllable count of 65 ( Could also double up as a cake stand!!!)

EXAMPLE:

A
bunch of,
prettiness,
roses, daisies,
lilies , bouquet be,
assorted happiness,
chocolates, crackers, cupcakes,
gastronomic indulgence be,
a birthday wish full of contentment,
prosperity, joyousness, fulfilment,
ever shall in ever eternity be.
(close)

© Aishwarya – Kitty’s Verses


Five & Dime

Lisa The Versesmith. She said, “I call it The Five and Dime because the 10s and 5s written out made me think of the old five and dime stores, which at age 65, I remember!”

Lisa create a syllabic form with the following requirements.

  • 9 lines
  • 10/5/10/10/5/10/5/5/5 
  • rhyme abaababbb (10 syllable lines all rhyme with each other, and the 5 syllable lines have a different rhyme with each other).

EXAMPLE:

To say that Time awaits no man is so.

Still, he seeks to block,

and stop the hands of Time to halt its flow.

If within my power, I would forgo,

not dare slow the clock.

So grasp whatever age Time does bestow.

Looking back, take stock,

head held high, and walk,

to Time’s door and knock.

© Lisa Nelson – The Versesmith


Nativitas

The Nativitas is a poem of 9 lines with 65 syllables (7-8-7-8-7-7-7-7-7) ‘Nativitas’ is a Latin word for ‘birth.’ by Balroop Singh.

EXAMPLE:

Precious Moments

April is a special month
A month of mellifluous sounds
Etched in my memory lanes,
Honeyed by babble of new-born
Moments of mirthful appeal
That could never lose their glow.
Sweeter than magnolia,
Our Angel arrived like dawn 
Dancing on its buoyant beams.

© Balroop Singh

***

A unique day to cherish
A day of pride for a woman-
The day she births a new life,
gets the laurel of a ‘mother’
When she holds her best atom,
The precious symbol of love
To nurture with tenderness
Celebration of such day –
True tribute to the mother.

© Balroop Singh


Birth & Fairy Themed Senryu +

The Senryu + is by Denise (D.L. Finn), and she said, “I went with 65 syllables. I combined three senyru 5/7/5 poems with two repeat seven-syllable lines that connected them. I used a “birth” and “faerie”  theme 🙂 Title not included in count.”

EXAMPLE:

CELEBRATION

dazzling sage eyes

captivating windswept smile

loving elation

forest faeries celebrate

magical moment

nestled amongst mighty redwoods

under the mushrooms

forest faeries celebrate

food, presents, balloons…

welcome the baby princess’

first enchanted breath

© D.L. Finn


Jinx

The Jinx by Boz Bozeman has 13 lines. Each line has five syllables, totaling 65. Boz said, “Believe me, that math was not easy for me.”

EXAMPLE:

Jinx

Falling up the stairs. 

Step on the stair that 

Is not there. Find your 

Balance or fall down. 

Feel the flailing fear. 

 

Black cats, cracked mirrors. 

Walk under ladders. 

No thirteenth floor, no 

Button for thirteen 

in elevators 

 

We walk away from 

Our superstitions 

And we gain true strength.  

© Boz Bozeman

Acrostic Ku Combo

Acrostic Ku Combo by Jules is a total of 65 words, not including title if choosing to use one. (Centering is optional). Line spaces between ‘verses.’
1) One word, one syllable (not necessarily the title, capital or not optional)
2) Acrostic combo of (six letter word);
pi ku (1/2 of a tau ku): 1/3 2/1 3/4, tau ku: 1/6 2/2 3/8
3) 3,5,3 ‘ku
4) Acrostic combo of (six letter word);
pi ku (1/2 of a tau ku): 1/3 2/1 3/4, tau ku: 1/6 2/2 3/8
5) solo tanka 5,7,5 (line space optional) 7,7

EXAMPLE:

Creative Liberty

birth…

Still silence
East
Rises, the sun
Enter the various
Natter
Effortlessly from morning birds

great fireball
light travels through sky
makes rainbows

Sleep retreats
Eve
Recoils quickly
Energy starts to flow
Night sights
Evaporate into shadow

seasonal dreams wake
as the buds of trees evolve
each day a new birth

down by the wind small tree branch
stuck in the creek weeps for joy

© JulesPaige


Memuente

The Memuente by Kerfe. She says, “When David posted the W3 prompt this morning, where Destiny chose the memento form, which has 64 syllables in its two stanzas, for her prompt, I knew I had the answer for Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday Birthday prompt–to construct a poem formed out of 65 syllables. I added one syllable between the two stanzas as a bridge, as in a puente–turning it into a memuente.

EXAMPLE:

Who Is

The days are pooled, caught narrowly
in pathways with windows
halfway
propped between temporarily
and suspended–limbo–
blurred, grey

~How~

can you tell when you have opened?
What do you use as your
mirror?
Where has your reflection chosen
to reside?  inside stars?
or fear?

© Kerfe Roig


Adorna

The Adorna by Yvette M. Calleiro, is a nod to the shadorma. It consists of three stanzas and is unrhymed. The first two stanzas have a syllabic pattern of 3/5/3/3/6/5 and the last stanza’s syllabic pattern is 2/3/4/4/2. In total, there are 65 syllables. The poem should be titled.

EXAMPLE:

Life’s Greatest Gift

a child’s birth

blessing from above

miracle

joyous gift

hopes for a great future

fills the heart with love

***

each birthday

new milestones are met

babe to child

teenager

leaves home to start new path

her journey unfolds

***

each year

celebrate

trip around sun

best gift of all

living

© Yvette M. Calleiro


The aînée

The aînée, created by Luanne Castle. She says, “Aînée is the French word for a female elder. I was going to use the Spanish word anciana, but I didn’t like the connotations which seemed less positive. Plus I like that I am honoring the French language which is a language that has originated a lot of syllabic poetry. The 65 syllables are arranged this way: ten lines of six syllables each, followed by a line of 2 syllables, and a final line of 3 syllables.”

EXAMPLE:

Decades to Medicare, or We Count Slower Later On

The first we play and learn,

then anguish for ten more.

Finally on our own,

we screw it up or not.

Next years we develop

into who we will be.

In our forties we whine

that we are now so old.

Those next decades are fine

for comfort in ourselves.

Now count

more slowly.

© Luanne Castle


De-cadence

From D. Avery at Shift&Shake: I give you de-cadence,  a poem of ten syllables (decade) per line plus a final one word closing with enough syllables to complete the required number, ie, 6 lines plus one 5-syllable word for Colleen’s birthday celebration. Rhyming brings the cadence, the decadence is self-indulgence, or indulging another.

EXAMPLE:

in the first decade she gathers wisdom
experiences magic unknowing
stretches impatiently, discovers wings
spends decades just searching, moving, going
finally alights, gives her wings a rest
magically finds that stories line her nest 
syllabically
Believin 

by A. Kid, from Carrot Ranch.com

Least since she was born Colleen’s been alive
hard ta believe she’s today sixty-five
(but roun her ya kin believe anythin)
Colleen an I both live life in full bloom
‘member her poemin at the Saloon?
there shared with us a new form that she had
Double -Ennead!

Syndom

The Syndom, by Lisa at Tao Talk. Lisa’s Rules:  Choose a one-word title (the 65th word) using any word that has synonyms and write eight, 8-syllable lines that each includes a synonym of the one-word word title. Even-numbered lines rhyme with each other. Optional and considered a second poem because of word count: write one with the antonym of the original title and have odd-numbered lines rhyme.

EXAMPLE:

Wise
In garden dwells a human sage
who gathers herbs for casts. A crone
with shelves of spells in jars, her nimble
shaman fingers mix. Voice intones
sleepy spells of ancient seer.
Skilled, she mixes with spoon of bones,
Expertly waves her wand, and Poof!
Savvy success! Arise a ghost!

© Lisa, Tao Talk

Wise
sage
crone
skilled
seer
nimble
expert
savvy
shaman

x1In garden dwells a human sage
a2who gathers herbs for casts. A crone
x3with shelves of spells in jars, her nimble
a4shaman fingers mix. Voice intones
x5sleepy spells of ancient seer.
a6Skilled, she mixes with spoon of bones,
x7Expertly waves her wand, and Poof!
a8Savvy success! Arise a ghost!

Foolish
In ev’ry realm juggles a clown
whose brain has more feather than goose,
hen who twitters all over town,
flippant backflips in jello ponds,
tells bad jokes and dips smiles from frowns,
walks ‘round town blissfully blinkered,
always dizzy, some say unwound;
feckless, yes, yet entertaining.

© Lisa, Tao Talk

Foolish
goose
clown
dip
hen
feckless
flippant
blinkered
dizzy

a1In ev’ry realm juggles a clown
x2whose brain has more feather than goose
a3hen who twitters all over town,
x4flippant backflips in jello ponds,
a5tells bad jokes and dips smiles to frowns,
x6walks ‘round town blissfully blinkered,
a7always dizzy, some say unwound
x8feckless, yes, yet entertaining


Boomer

Boomer by Elizabeth at Tea & Paper. She says, “The form I created contains 3 stanzas: the first and second 6-5-6-5 and the third one 6-5-5-5.”

EXAMPLE:

one minute you are six
in the next, sixty
interval in between
are filled with moments

tiny moments of joy
moments of worry
tiny moments of smiles
moments of sadness

all of them constitute
whole body and soul
with each bit of them
be your own being

© Elizabeth, Tea & Paper

The Odds

HG from Chu on This, says: “I had to pull out a calculator for this one. I call it “The Odds.” If there is already a form like this, then let me know. 1 syllable Title + 8 lines written with the following odd number of syllables per line: 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15.”

EXAMPLE:

What
Are the odds
You came to be you
Born in this space and time to
Do what you do and experience
Life to the fullest and in all its colors
You beat the odds to be here knowing how hard it is
May your heart continue to beat the odds until you are done.

© HG – Chu on This


Square Root Plus One

The Square Root Plus One is by Melissa Lemay. She says, “I went out on a limb here, hope it flies.🪰 Here is my square root plus one form (that you totally do not need to include anywhere or take seriously, just thought it would work well for the prompt😜). Explanation: I chose 64, of which the square root is 8. Then each line contains 8 syllables, and there should be a total of 8 lines, equaling 64, with the exception of one line (of the 8) that contains 9 syllables, bumping the total count of the poem up to 65. This poetry form only works with perfect squares and their roots. No rhymes required.”

EXAMPLE:

Baby boomer born on Friday
Ezra Pound deemed legally sane
Heart beats number two million times
Created unknown poetic rhymes
Syllabic words into souls pry
Fair hair, sparkling eyes like blue sky
Face of beauty, wisdom, kindness
Year of Dog and birthstone diamond

© Melissa Lemay

Choka Minus Two Syllables

The Choka Minus Two Syllables = 65 syllables by Reena Saxena.

ECLIPSED

welcome the eclipse
hold ring of fire to ransom
what does it reveal
or conceal in rarity
curiosity
peaks as telescopes observe
relative movements
of Earth, Moon, and silent sky
dip into darkness
discover eternity
-Recalcitrant Sun

© Reena Saxena

Barbee (65 words)

  • It has a COUPLET rhyming pattern on the 2nd syllable of aabbccddeeffgg
  • and an end-rhyme CROSSED rhyming pattern of  ababcdcdefef
  • It is a poem of 12 lines and may be presented as the poet desires.
  • It is syllabic 10/10/10/6/6/10/10/6/6/10/10/10

LIFE IS A BATTLE

Are you seen as a winner or loser?
Enjoy opportunities to reflect;
Happy birthdays bring all dear ones closer
Celebrate life – don’t rest
Don’t let milestones stop you
Count your victories, but revise benchmarks
Let chessboard squares look yellow, red or blue
Challenge storms, chase the sharks;
Let strategies emerge
from confrontations; not ingrained instincts
Appreciate innovation; don’t merge
with darkness; escape the hallowed precincts

© Reena Saxena


Self-Referential Math (SRM)

Self-Referential Math (SRM) is by Paula Light at Light Motifs II. She says, “SRM is where you take any number and create a poem where the syllables times the lines add up to it, and you should mention the number in your poem as well, bolding the line in which it appears for the mathematically impaired. (5 X 13 = 65).”

EXAMPLE:

Five Times Thirteen

Magical numbers
Solve all my problems
No need for logic
Superstitions rule
From the bathroom scale
To my shopping cart
The correct amount
Will bring good fortune
Ten and eight are great
Three and two okay
Twelve is fabulous
Sixty-five hooray
That’s five times thirteen

© Paula Light


PhoneColl

PhoneColl is created by Sangeetha at Mindfills.

  • 9 line poem
  • Lines 1,3,5,7,9 ~ 5 syllables
  • Lines 2,4,6,8 ~ 10 syllables
  • Rhyme scheme ~ ababababa

Mindfills © 2023  

Example:

My grandma's garden
Giant chrysanthemums rose over my head
I was just five then
The sun there rose to the smell of fresh bread
I'd go there again!
To listen to Grandma's stories in bed
Weave a daisy chain
Maybe I'll see her with her lipstick red
Calling out my name

© Sangeetha - Mindfills

Adjusted Nonet

Gwen Plano created a poem of fifteen lines and 65 syllables (1-2-3-4-5-6-7-9-7-6-5-4-3-2-1). She says: “It’s similar to a Double Inverted Nonet, so I’m calling it an Adjusted Nonet.” 😊 

© Gwen Plano


Welsh Wyth

The Welsh Wyth (wyth is eight in English) is by AJ at Let’s Write. It consists of a total of eight lines the first 7 lines have 8 syllables and the final line has 9 syllables, and the rhyme scheme is x/aaa/bbb/x – all lower case with a title.

EXAMPLE:


The ‘Plutune’

The Plutune is by David at the Skeptic’s Kaddish. He says, “The ‘Plutune’ form is a series of five ‘Kelly Lune’ poems, wherein the middle lines of all five ‘Lunes’ rhyme with one another.

The ‘Kelly Lune’ poetic form

The Lune, created by poet Robert Kelly, is also known as the American Haiku, and it has three lines. The syllable count is: 5-3-5. There are no other requirements.

Each ‘Kelly Lune’ has thirteen syllables; thus, the ‘Plutune’ has sixty-five syllables.

EXAMPLE:

Colleen celebrates
her birthday
penning poetry;

Verses flow forth eve-
ry witch way;
sparks of magick fly;

Energies connect
far friends; they
feel deep gratitude;

Poets gift her with
sweet wordplay
in clever new forms;

Across Gaia, shouts
of 'Hooray!'
in Colleen's honor!

© David, The Skeptic's Kaddish

I’m so grateful for all the birthday wishes and the new poetic forms! Let’s all write 65 syllable poetry together! Thanks so much! 🙏🏻

Published by Colleen M. Chesebro

An avid reader, Colleen M. Chesebro rekindled her love of writing poetry after years spent working in the accounting industry. These days, she loves crafting syllabic poetry, flash fiction, and creative fiction and nonfiction. In addition to poetry books, Chesebro’s publishing career includes participation in various anthologies featuring short stories, flash fiction, and poetry. She’s an avid supporter of her writing community on Word Craft Poetry.com by organizing and sponsoring a weekly syllabic poetry challenge, called #TankaTuesday, where participants experiment with traditional and current forms of Japanese and American syllabic poetry. Chesebro is an assistant editor of The Congress of the Rough Writers Flash Fiction Anthology & Gitty Up Press, a micro-press founded by Charli Mills and Carrot Ranch. In January 2022, Colleen founded Unicorn Cats Publishing Services to assist poets and authors in creating eBooks and print books for publication. In addition, she creates affordable book covers for Kindle and print books. Chesebro lives in the house of her dreams in mid-Michigan surrounded by the Great Lakes with her husband and two (unicorn) cats, Chloe & Sophie.

50 thoughts on “65 Syllable Poetry Forms

  1. What a Birthday Bonanza of wonderful crafted poems Colleen…. Sorry My brain will not compute to take a bite out of your lovely birthday Cake… 🙂 I enjoyed reading All the examples… And well done to all who took part….
    I hope you had a very Joyous Birthday Colleen….. Sending LOVE my friend ❤

    Like

  2. Lots of originality in these forms! So fun!

    By the way, it’s not Wordsmith, it’s The Versesmith. I figured if a writer of words was a wordsmith, a writer of poems would be a versesmith! Plus, my maiden name was Smith. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh well heck! I’m sorry. It took most of the day to put the post together. WP doesn’t make anything easy any more. I’ll fix versesmith… LOL! That’s a cute play on words and suits you so well. xx

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