Mindlovemisery's Menagerie

A dose of fetish. Good friends. An incomparable muse.

B&P’s Shadorma and Beyond – The Villanelle – May 2, 2015


Hello Folks!

We’re smack dab in the middle of spring and I thought it’d be nice to visit an old friend; the Villanelle!

“A villanelle is an ancient Italian pastoral poem, probably originally from Sicily from around the 16th century.  French poets (and then English poets) picked it up in the 18th and 19th century but it never really made its splash until the 20th century when Dylan Thomas and others began to use the form.

The poem is composed of four tercets and then an ending closing stanza of four lines. The first and last refrains are repeated alternatively in the second, third and fourth tercet and then once again in the last stanza.  The first lines of the second through the fourth tercets and the beginning of the closing stanza must rhyme with the refrains … the second lines all throughout the poem rhyme with themselves … complicated to explain but easy to write, believe me … here’s a poem to get you started with color codes to show you how the refrains and rhymes work … there is no special meter or syllable count requirements”

An excellent example of the form is Dylan Thomas’s “Do not go gentle into that good night”:

     Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

     Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

     Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

     Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

     Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

     And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Here’s a painting you might use as inspiration for the Villanelle or a Shadorma (a sextet) with a syllable pattern of 3/5/3/3/7/5:

Feel free to write a shadorma and/or Villanelle and if you wish use your own artwork (or none at all), the choice is yours!

When you have written your poem(s), please TAG them B&P’s Shadorma & Beyond andMindLoveMisery’s Menagerie. Then add your link to the Mister Linky widget below.

Have a great week!  Ciao, Bastet


About Bastet

I love to read...I like to write...I've travelled the world and seen the sites. I'm past my prime and feel so young, especially when near the young. I'm writing this blog, to remember, to think and to share...with the hopes that someone else will make a comment that will stimulate new thoughts and pathways. Actually, I'm a gabber, so the logical extension of gabbing is blogging! ;-)

33 comments on “B&P’s Shadorma and Beyond – The Villanelle – May 2, 2015

  1. Pingback: Venetian Water Roads – Villanelle – May 2, 2015 | Bastet and Sekhmet's Library

  2. Pingback: My One and True | A Glass of Bubbly

  3. CC Champagne
    May 2, 2015

    Not fair! I don’t have time for this… *sigh* Ah, well… Just a quick one, then! *smile*

    • Bastet
      May 3, 2015

      So sorry … but I’m happy you’ll find a sec to write a villanelle!

  4. Pingback: Jeepney – B&P’s Shadorma and Beyond – The Villanelle | ladyleemanila

  5. Pingback: Gone Fishing | Bohemian Nerd

  6. Pingback: Floralia for MLMM 5.2 s | Jules Longer Strands of Gems

    • Bastet
      May 3, 2015

      You did well … know the problem well!

  7. Rall
    May 3, 2015

    This is the best example of how to write a villanelle yet. The colour code made such a difference. Even so I find them fiendishly difficult but I do like a challenge. Thanks for this one.

    • thotpurge
      May 3, 2015

      Fiendishly difficult …. totally agree with the choice of words!!! Gosh!

      • Bastet
        May 3, 2015

        Ah … it’s fiendishly difficult only until you’ve gotten it written 😉

    • C.C.
      May 3, 2015

      I agree with everything Rall said…the color code is so helpful….wish I’d had this when I was first trying this form and yes, “fiendishly difficult” is a perfect way to describe this…ugh….the villanelle is my nemesis 😛

      • Bastet
        May 3, 2015

        My dear Bubbly … as I’m writing this, I’ve already read your finished result … one would never think that you’d found it fiendishly difficult … or difficult at all for that matter … of course it’s not a nursery rhyme … but the villanelle really is a wonderful challenge!

      • C.C.
        May 3, 2015

        Wrong CC! I find them so fiendishly difficult that I didn’t even attempt one this time around 😦

      • Bastet
        May 4, 2015

        Oops — you’re right … so sorry! I’d just read her post (and commented there) and then saw the initials here on B&P’s prompt … I’m sorry you found it so difficult! :-/ … Jules says … once the first stanza is written just copy and paste the refrains in the right place and fill in the rest … makes it sound a lot easier 😉

    • Bastet
      May 3, 2015

      Thanks Rall … I actually learnt this technique of colour-coding the prompts from a blogger called Cubby “Reowr”, who unfortunately doesn’t blog anymore … our Paloma also uses this technique and we’ve really found it useful, even to ourselves! Glad it could help you understand how to work with the villanelle, which I agree is fiendishly difficult – until of course one gets the knack of it … then it’s only difficult 😉

  8. Pingback: B&P’S SHADORMA AND BEYOND “MATING RITUALS” | mindlovemisery

  9. mindlovemisery
    May 3, 2015

    Sorry there is a problem with my link here is the correct one

  10. Jen
    May 3, 2015

    So happy to see villanelle, Bastet! And with Odilon Redon? Perfect!!!

    • Bastet
      May 4, 2015

      Thanks Paloma … I thought you might like that … thought of you when I wrote the post.

      • Jen
        May 4, 2015


  11. Pingback: Cow Dust | THOTPURGE

  12. thotpurge
    May 4, 2015
    • Bastet
      May 4, 2015

      And a lot of fun! Thanks for sharing this with us!

  13. Pingback: Spring Flight | Walk A Mile

  14. Pingback: In Hindsight … | Girlgoyle. Banished.

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This entry was posted on May 2, 2015 by in BJ Poetry Forms and tagged , , .
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