Hello, I’ve returned.
It’s been awhile since I’ve covered a new form of poetry, so I figured I’d give it a go today. While I had known about this form, I had never written anything in it. I wrote one to practice (it ended up gibberish to be honest) and then I had my friend provide me with the basis for a second. That one is much better in my opinion.
In case you don’t know much about the sestina form, I suppose I’ll go over it a little. It’s a 39 line poem (six stanzas with six lines each, plus a three line stanza at the end.) In the first six stanzas, the end word is a rotation of the same six words. The seventh stanza contains two words in each line–one in the middle and one at the end. When this form first began, it was exclusively written in iambic pentameter, but this is no longer something required. You will note that I ignored it completely.
The pattern for the six words chosen flows as follows:
- BDF/ACE (Or flipped)
For my first sestina, I chose the words silence, dreams, roses, end, fire, and cobwebs.
Breathing occupies silence
In a room filled with dreams.
I lay down my roses
At the feet of hallow ends.
I used to be on fire—
Now there’s only cobwebs.
I dust off all the cobwebs,
To see what’s left in silence.
Though it’s been burned by fire—
It lives on in my dreams.
This can’t be the end.
I stop to smell the roses.
Can anyone think of roses
Covered up by cobwebs
When they finally reach the end?
Answers live in silence,
Right along with dreams
Consumed by fires.
You stand alone under fire,
Your hands hold white roses.
See through this dream—
You’re stuck in the spider’s web.
Keep your peace in silence
Until the war had ended.
When will this all end?
What stays in ashes after fire?
I can’t hear anything—it’s all silent.
My fingers touch the edges of petals from roses
Only to brush a cobweb.
I am jolted from my dream.
We can’t keep what we dream,
Though I’ll find a way in the end
To clear history’s memory of cobwebs.
There’s too much smoke from these fires
For the plants to sprout roses.
Bombs take away my silence.
Interrupted silence stifles dreams.
Nothing can bloom in war—even roses find their end.
We can’t put out these fires, but maybe we could clear the cobwebs.
For my second sestina, my friend chose the words glass, drowning, blue, fragile, shoes, and rainfall.
Sestina for Emily
I hear the sounds of breaking glass
In a dream where I’m drowning.
My skin is turning blue
And my bones are growing fragile.
In these currents, I’m weighed down by my shoes.
I wake up to hear the rainfall.
There’s a steady drumming of falling rain
Splattering my windows of glass.
I lace up my shoes
While I watch the flowers drown.
Rain drips from petals with fragility,
But it won’t rinse off the color blue.
Lately, I’ve been feeling blue
Tint the air with rainfall.
I’ve grown beyond fragile
Illusions of glass,
But I can’t fight away feelings of drowning
When puddles soak my shoes.
Echoing clicks from the sound of my shoes.
The light from the moon is blue,
Though the city lights leave no room for stars—instead let them drown.
I can’t see mush through falling rain,
But these drops cut like glass.
Human skin is fragile.
I let myself be fragile,
But no one could walk a mile in my shoes.
I’m not made of glass—
I am the color blue
That comes after rainfall
Has finished its attempts to make me drown.
If I keep breathing we won’t drown,
I’ll be stronger than fragile.
The rain will keep falling
And soak my shoes
Until the drip with blue,
But I am no longer made of glass.
I will not drown in my reflection of glass.
Though this color blue might be considered fragile,
I walk through the rainfall with dry shoes.
She didn’t get to see it until now. I hope you liked it friend. ❤
Anyhoo, thanks for reading! Catch y’all on the flip side.