Poetry Friday: Form and Function

The Inklings’ challenge this month was mine. I was quite taken with the idea of this book: a book about poetry forms and techniques…written in poems. So I challenged the group to write their own poems about forms or techniques. The more we dug into the book, the more we realized that the author doesn’t always explain a form in that form. For instance, her poem about the sestina follows the form but does not explain it. And one of the flaws of the book is that nowhere is there clear definitions of the techniques and forms. Still and all, I recommend the book, and we all had fun playing around with form and techniques. Here are three of mine.


Writing teachers especially hate
run-ons. Close the gate
so the end of the line can have the pause
that finishes a thought or completes a clause.



small observation
perhaps elaboration
wry commentary


Personification Limerick

I once was a limerick named Sue.
My rhythm was fine. Rhyme was, too.
There was just this one thing
caused my heart not to sing:
my longing to be a haiku.


All three poems are ©Mary Lee Hahn, 2021. (I’m not sure what’s up with me sharing multiple poems per Poetry Friday post…this is the third week in a row…)

Catherine has this week’s Poetry Friday roundup at Reading to the Core. Check out the other Inklings’ responses to the challenge here:

Heidi @ My Juicy Little Universe
Linda @ A Word Edgewise
Margaret @ Reflections on the Teche
Molly @ Nix the Comfort Zone

Poetry Peeps August Challenge

Time to start working on the Poetry Peeps August challenge! The last Friday of August will be here before you know it! Here’s the challenge: We’re writing after the style of Jane Yolen’s eight line, rhyming poem, “What the Bear Knows,” a poem written in honor of her 400th bookBear Outside. Our topic is What the ____ Knows. You might have written one of these for Michelle Barnes’ Today’s Little Ditty Spotlight on Joyce Sidman.

You’ve got a couple of weeks to craft your creation(s), then share your offering on August 27th in a post and/or on social media with the tag #PoetryPals.