Your Hosts: Mary Robinette, Dan, Amal, and Howard


Rigorous structure in poetic form

is commonly pointed at when we declare

Poems have meters and rhymes, as the norm.


Yet words without patterns can roar like a storm

So why pay attention, why study with care

Rigorous structure in poetic form?


Just set it aside, surrender the gorm

(means "alertness", a quite-handy rhyme I put there)

Poems have meters and rhymes as the norm.


Let some of it go, perhaps. Let it transform

beyond all the rhyming. Deny, if you dare:

Rigorous structure in poetic form


Okay, you can maybe keep some of it warm

Those toasty iambics by which you might swear:

Poems have meters and rhymes as the norm.


This episode text I wrote: does it inform?

Will all be confused when this couplet doth air?

"Rigorous structure in poetic form:

Poems have meters and rhymes as the norm."


Credits: This episode was recorded by Marshall Carr, and mastered by Alex Jackson. The villanelle above was the first—and hopefully last—ever composed by Howard Tayler. Yes, the Writing Excuses tagline is a haiku. No, Howard did not know that when he wrote it in 2008.

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