B&P’s Shadorma and Beyond – Bytelle – May 23, 2015

Greetings from Paloma, with the latest edition of B&P’s Shadorma & Beyond.

For this week you may write a shadorma – a non-rhyming sestet with a syllable count of 3/5/3/3/7/5 – or – a Bytelle.  This poetic form was invented by Judd Labarda of Poeformology.

The bytelle is based on the binary system in computing and programming.  In binary code, each symbol (letter, number, punctuation, character, etc.) is assigned a string of 8 bits that come in pairs of binary digits of either 1’s or 0’s.  The 8 bits (0’s and 1’s) become one byte.

For example – the letter “a” becomes “01100001” in binary code.

How to Write a Bytelle

1. Choose a word. Preferably, a short word!  I chose “free”.

2. Visit this site. Type your word into the site and press “encode”.
“Free” becomes “01100110011100100110010101100101”.

3. Divide that string of numbers into sets of 8. “Free”, then,
becomes “01100110 01110010 01100101 01100101.”  That is
your poem’s structural pattern.   You now have the framework
for a poem with 8-line stanzas.

4. Look at the 0’s and 1’s. All lines labeled “1” are rhymed;
all lines labeled “0” are unrhymed.

5. That is a lot of rhyme! If you want, feel free to make your
poem 1-2 stanzas long.  Go longer if you’re up to the challenge!

Here is the bytelle I created with the binary code for “joy”:

Joyful moments startle me like
lobbies imploding with laughter:
bright as novae – stars’ hereafters –
thin as the skin of a bubble.
Having known the quick’ning after
weeks of this dark and cold vacuum,
how I seek the light, a rafter
fighting the currents of worry.


Feel free to write a shadorma (a non-rhyming six-line poem in 3/5/3/3/7/5) and/or bytelle. The choice is yours! When you have written your poem(s), please TAG them B&P’s Shadorma & Beyond and MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie. Then add your link to the Mister Linky widget below.

Happy writing!


      • I think I did mine incorrectly. At the beginning of the post, you gave a syllable form of 3/5/3/7/7/5. At the end, you gave a different guideline. I followed the first, not having seen the second. But according to Wikipedia, the second is correct. Sorry. I’ve written a new one now.


  1. Damn … you do come up with the most original stuff … I’m going to have to reread this carefully on first sight it looks challenging – but once I got past the number crunch concept I find it should be great fun… but your example is fantastic …. bravo!


  2. If you do a Bytelle with more than one stanza does each stanza have the same or different rhyme end…. I think I’m going with different …

    I’ve been away, and today is a double duty day so I may end up waiting….just a tad more to play this. I’ve got the word and the code. Now I just need the time and the ryhme 😉


    • Hi Jules — adapt the form however you see fit and make it your own — wherever the muses lead you — the prompt is here to inspire, not to herd you into a little box 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  3. […] https://mindlovemiserysmenagerie.wordpress.com/2015/05/23/2335/ Shadorma shadorma (a non-rhyming six-line poem in 3/5/3/3/7/5) or Bytelle please see site link for instructions. Bytelle and Shadorma combo: blue = 01100010 01101100 01110101 01100101 My lines the numerals are the zeros and r = the ones or rhyme lines. abode – archaic : a stay; a sojourn. lapis lazuli one pronunciation is LAP- is LAZH-oo http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Shades_of_blue “Pages in category “Shades of blue” / The following 66 pages are in this category, out of 66 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._Route_66 […]


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