New Syllabic Forms

Our community poets have created the following syllabic forms. If you have questions about the form, please click the links to the poet’s post where you can ask questions. ❤

English Doha by Reena Saxena: three, four-line stanzas of syllables: 13-11-13-11

Wake up, O woman, patriarchy you must not trust
your closest ones have a vested interest
I'm yet to meet a man who's truly a feminist
they hold on to privilege - though co-exist

if it makes you happy, by all means protect your nest
just ensure you don't raise a misogynist
don't let your actions or mindset become defeatist
leave a better world for daughters at the least

independent decisions should not cease to exist
let them label you a beast or activist
you are born to raise a better world, you must desist
from raising humans who oppose or resist

Septex by WillowDot21: two seven-line stanzas of syllables: 7-7-7-7-7-7-7, The lines in the stanza do not rhyme, but the lines in the first stanza rhyme with the corresponding line in the second stanza e.g. The first-line stanza one rhymes with line one on stanza two, the second-line stanza one rhymes with second-line stanza two, and so on. (I highlighted a few end rhymes, so you get the idea).


Gently falls the silent snow
Covering all the traces
Of the plight of the faceless
Hidden, easy to forget.
The refugee’s plight is plain
Unseen crushed under the boot
Of those who started this strife

Ceaseless they’ve no where to go.
Fear written on their faces
Children to their sides are pressed
Some bring their beloved pets.
They look for rest, all in vein.
The bombs fall and soldiers loot
The remains of their once life.

The Harmony Triptych: by Harmony Kent: A 9 line poem with a syllable count of 3-6-9-12-15-12-9-6-3, and a rhyming pattern of abacdcaba. It is titled and can be written on any theme. For best visual effects, it should be centred.

"Seasons Lost"

rain splatters
in horizontal wind
umbrellas wrong way torn to tatters
whatever happened to March winds, April showers
May flowers, summer sun, and all things in their proper season
for ages, whichever the month, the dark sky glowers
clouds race gales as storm batters
against nature we’ve sinned
it matters

Dark Fib by Trent McDonald: This eight-lined form is based on the Fibonacci numbers (sequence), taking the first eight numbers as so: 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13. The “zero” is to be a symbol or punctuation mark that defines the poem. The next six lines should be about math, science (i.e. here it is space), or technology. The last line is 13, unlucky, so should be a dark statement about love, life, etc., that is something more down to Earth, more human. It just needs to be dark. 

"Space & Time"

distant worlds
rocket to the moon
leaving the lonely Earth behind
my world dissolves into vacuum when you are not here

(Poem #2)

can life be out there
Earth alone in the universe
is this the one oasis or is it the desert

Syllabilite by Veera: This form contains one heptastich and one hexastich. The syllable count is 3-5-7-9-7-5-3 for the heptastich, and 3-5-7-9-7-5 for the hexastich. The rhyme scheme is a-a-b-b-c-d-a-a-a-b-b-e-f.

A grand,ageing tree,
The growth of which eternal,
Branches spread wide from trunk immortal;
Flowers bloom bright, fruits turn ripe,
Magic of mankind,

A grand,ageing tree
Eyed by trivial mortals,
Boundless admiration eternal
For verses racing along,

The 4-11 by Gwen Plano: This form is a stanza of eleven lines, four syllables each line. The beginning line repeats as the last line. (I copied the image from Gwen’s blog).


© Gwen Plano

Inchworm by JulesPaige: A stanza of four lines; syllable count 2,4,6,8 including any number of verses allowed, and include a title. (…with a nod to Danny Kaye singing ‘Inchworm’ written by Frank Loesser).

"Tummy Tickle?"

How fast
To thoroughly
Chew through the fruit of my
Tree; I didn’t spy your entry

That bite
A confused taste
Then I looked closer to
See… just your other half wiggle

Too late to spit
Now deep down in my gut
Double digested now; crab apple

Here is to look
Before your teeth chomp true
If a surprise isn’t wanted

(Poem 2)

"Dandelion Hunter"

Her dress
Rustling cotton
In the warm breeze; movement
Accents her youthful energy

And Daddy watch
How fast will the years fly
Until she wears her bridal gown

Special Occasion Syllabic Poetry by Annette Rochelle Aben: The date inspired this form today 3-8 and the fact that it is my sister’s birthday! An eleven-line stanza with a syllable count of 3-8-3-8-3-8-3-8-3-8-3 per line, and a title.

"Budding Life"

In the trees
Branches are budding at their ends
For oh so many lovely leaves
And critters
Will build nests to house their young ones
From the hunters of easy prey
As well as
The elements of wind and rain
In the trees

The FFS (for Five/Four/Six) by Lisa the Versesmith: The FFS is written in any even number of tercets, paired, written with a syllable count of 5-4-6. Punctuation and title are optional. The end word in the last line of each pair of tercets rhyme, a different rhyme for each pair of tercets that is, rhyme pattern of xxxxx, xxxx, xxxxxa, xxxxx, xxxx, xxxxxa, xxxxx, xxxx, xxxxxb, xxxxx, xxxx, xxxxxb, and so on…

"Under the Lampost"

under the lamppost
meet me, I said
we’ve alibis to make

I'm under the gun
somebody told
they know my name’s a fake

I’m underwater
I’m sinking fast
I’m pretty well undone
I take all the blame
to you alone,
but now I've got to run

I’ll be under wraps
'til this dies down
a year, no less, at least

I have been under
their watchful eyes
I'm judged to be a beast

under the table
or so I thought
now under watchful eye

be understanding
I’m overwhelmed
but not so that I’d lie

my sources ran dry
something went wrong
my plans have sprung a leak

pretend you’ve moved
asleep in bed
when asked, we never speak

I now have to go
deep underground
until the coast is clear

I have to hurry
under the gun
take this from me, my dear

Rokuhana by Sally Cronin: This form consists of three pairs of six and seven syllables (Roku and Hana) in two stanzas on the subject. Six-line stanzas, 6-7-6-7-6-7 syllables per stanza. Write two stanzas.


There are thirteen letters
in the word superstitions
with trouble that doubles
when combined with a Friday
or a Tuesday in Spain
a time to be wary

A sure way to change luck
when at sixes and sevens
with all things around you
disregard the first number
engage with the second
trust its mythical power

Drop-Drip by Yvette Calleiro: The Drop-Drip has 12 lines with syllables 1-2-2-3-3-3-4-4-4-3-2-1. This creates a shape poem that looks like a raindrop. In my head, it looks like a large raindrop collecting on a ledge and falling once it’s gathered enough weight. The form is untitled, and should be paired with a picture, but should be understood alone as well.

(courtesy of @jplenio on Pixabay)
find your
dream catcher
rabbit’s foot
rainbow’s gold
four-leaf clover
falling star’s wish
anchor your soul
but set dreams free
pave your way

Great 8 by Selma Martin: The 8 is eight lines of eight syllables for each line.

peace comes from combined energy
and the glow of a stroke that binds
helps you see you in the people
and the people inside you, whole
start with private thoughts you harbor
and words from your lips you let flow
then stand back and watch how karma
moves mountains, builds bridges: maps eight

The 333 by Kerfe Roig: Three verses with three lines in each verse, and three one-syllable words in each line. Line one repeats as line two in the second verse and line three in the third verse.

"Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral of St. Volodymyr"

Stop war. Help.
Where to go?
The life left.

Tried to flee.
Stop war. Help.
For what? What?

So much grief.
Can’t go back.
Stop war. Help.

Qelegy by Sangeetha at the IndieShe. An elegy, which comprises a sequence of quatrains. Each quatrain is four-lines, 4-8-8-4 syllables in each stanza. The rhyme scheme is ABAB.

"An Elegy to Peace"

dark is the night
veiled in misty nebulous glow
faraway stars hide in sheer fright
as canons blow
fireball in sky
roared with incendiary blasts
to suck out life of souls on sly
I watched aghast 
wintery snow
scarlet red laced with bloody wails
life struck a deathblow 
telling sad tale
much Pain abounds
life I so loved and lived no more
my dear ones no longer around,
Peace I implore

Fibonacci Sapta by Sangeetha at Mindfills: A syllabic poetry form with seven lines per stanza, syllables 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13 ~ corresponding to the first seven numbers in the Fibonacci series. The poem must mention or refer to a pattern or a series.

tessellate into twenty-one
trapeziums on sacred temple floor

Oseh Shalom by David of The Skeptic’s Kaddish: The form is a pentastich (a poem in five lines, with a syllable count of 7-9-6-3-4. The last two syllables must be the word ‘Amen.’ This form is thematic and only written about peace.

"Senseless or Relentless"

Ukrainian children flee;
nuclear power plant set ablaze;
senseless, relentless war;
please - just stop;
let live - Amen.

scrimerlick by RuthKlein’s Scribbles: is a first-person lament. It comprises five lines with the following syllable count, 9-9-5-5-9. No rhyming. Refrain from using “ing” words. This poem is titled.

"Aging or Genetics?"

I went to the doctor for nothing 
she viewed my chart and hid her chagrin
*expects healing now-
no acceptance of age*
yet, I’ve had these complaints forever

Pi-Ku by D. Avery: Use the first 21 digits of Pi for the syllable count. The whole number three is the three-syllable title. 3.14159 26535 89793 23846…


Math is language…
Elegant language
beautifully written, spoken by
Patterns, balance, ratios
endlessly repeat
planet song
earth, water, fire, air
elemental singing Planet
forgive our great illiteracies
and our crude utterances
deaf, blind, and mute to elegant song
notes of truth
of hope
of balance
possible yet in this our world
if only we
could read the planet’s song.

Iceform by Jane Aguilar: Title is needed. Total 29 syllables: Pattern 3/5/3/9/9. We should feel the meaning after connecting the first two lines. The third line should give meaning, without breaking the first two lines and losing their meaning. The third line is not a pivot line.

We should feel the meaning after connecting the last two lines. The last two lines should not add any meaning to the third line, as it is not the pivot line. When all five lines are read, they must contain meaning.

🌟 In (A, B, C) ” I” is the ninth letter so the pattern in descending order will be: I I C E C. This is the reason I named this form as ICE form.

"Night Changes"

Fell in love
it is not yet known
no regrets
the dream disappeared when I woke up
my love, the night changes me and you

Twisted Abhang by Laura McHarrie of the Hidden Edge. This syllabic form is a simple non-rhyming: 6, 4, 6, 10, 4, 6, 4.

"Perfect Panacea"

A great many people,
Dwell on little,
Yet enjoy fruitful lives.
Money is no perfect panacea
To life’s problems.
Happiness can’t be bought—
It’s not for sale.

Distillate by D. Wallace Peach: This form has a syllable count of 3/3/6/6/9/9/6/6/3/3. I named it a Distillate because it’s a distillation of a larger story. My guess is that every story’s theme can be captured in a poem, no matter how large the book.

Man in Control: Flash Fiction & a Distillate

Brandon donned his latest acquisition—a  genuine silk suit. The industrious little silkworms bordered on extinct, and he finally ranked among the international elite who could afford their cocoons. His was new money, thanks to polished attorneys and creative accountants, both armed with tarnished ethics. 

He’d given himself two hours to make the one-hour trip from his penthouse to the corporate highrise across the gorge—one of a host of towers. And not the tallest. But he was only thirty-five, and the world was his chessboard, the match a move away from mate. In a few hours, a significant portion of the conglomerate’s assets would fall under his control.

He slipped into the leather recliner of his midnight-blue slider and tossed his briefcase on the seat beside him. “Headquarters. Skip the traffic and take the flyover.”

The slider’s cyber-system hummed to life. “Flyover not recommended.”

“Heavy traffic?”

“No traffic detected.”

Brandon mugged a face. “Then take the flyover.”

“Flyover not recommended.”

“Why not?”

“Flyover not recommended.”

“Override.” Brandon detached the console and typed his passcode, pleased to finally use the feature. He liked the idea of control, driving the slider instead of the slider driving him. The upgrade had cost him a small fortune. It would pay for itself that morning.

As the vehicle glided forward, Brandon closed his eyes and relaxed his shoulders. The slider veered from the congested rails onto the flyover, cruising into the pre-dawn darkness.

At the peak over the gorge, the slider decelerated and stopped. Brandon glanced out the window at the black depths below. Sunrise would soon carve sharp shadows across the cliffs and turn the river into molten gold.  “Proceed.”

“Not recommended.”

“Overide.” He typed in the code.

“Not recommended.”

“God damn it. Override.” He stabbed the console and received the same reply. After a quick check of his watch, he peered into the darkness ahead. “Is there a traffic problem?”

“No traffic detected.”

“What the hell? How long to back up and take the other route?”

“Estimated time three hours.”

Brandon barked a curse. He leaned forward and rubbed his hands together, changing tactics. “Override slider functions.”

“Not recommended.”

“Override braking system.”

“Not recommended.”

“Okay, how about override acceleration?”

“Not recommended.”

Brandon’s fist slammed onto the console, and the glass screen cracked. He tossed the damaged hardware onto the passenger seat. There was no point. His fate was sealed. He’d lost out on the biggest deal of his life.

“Cyber system impaired, reverting to manual overrides.”

“Ha!” Brandon checked the time. He’d make it if he flew. With the brake released, he pressed forward on the throttle. The slider responded, accelerated. With a laugh, he opened her up, and the bitch roared like a beast with a taste for speed.

The machine screamed down the other side of the flyover, lurched sideways on a damaged span of rail, and leaped into the sky. The sunrise blinded him as the slider plummeted, its throttle clutched in his white-knuckled hands. The golden river smashed the windshield into his face, his life, in the end, beyond his control.

underlings deal and grasp
gold with white-knuckled fists
rapt in night’s deceptive dreams they fly
eyes blinded by a distant sunrise
snared by reckless desire
seconds gained and years lost
of control

Sevenfold by Colleen Chesebro: The word sevenfold is seven times as much in size, strength, number, or amount. It’s seven times as much; multiplied by seven; sevenfold.

The sevenfold is a seven-line stanza, with seven syllables in each line, for a total of 49 syllables per stanza (7 x 7 = 49). You can create as many stanzas as you desire.

"Seven Chakras Sing"

magical numbers repeat
universal patterns show
secret messages within...
the angel number seven
confirmation of wisdom 
given with love from above
while your seven chakras sing

move forward to accomplish 
this life's beloved mission
remove all self-doubts and fears
face hardships with bravery
embrace the spiritual 
strengthen your bond with kindness
fulfill your forever dreams

Many thanks to the creativity of our poetic community for sharing these new poetry forms. Feel free to practice these forms in our #TankaTuesday challenges.

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