The Poetry Princess Project — September 2016
I think we all shared mixed feelings over this month’s form. The clogyrnach (say that 5 times fast!) ended up seeming kind of limericky to us. It’s a Welsh form that requires a certain number of lines (either 5 or 6), a certain number of syllables (32) and a very clear-and-simple aa,bb-type rhyme scheme. But something about the prescriptive nature of this form as opposed to the prescriptive nature of other forms felt a tad too, well, sing-songy and prescriptive to us.
Still, we did as we were told and wrote the darn things. Well, ok, I didn’t follow the end-line requirements to the letter of the law. In fact I pretty much broke the rule that there should be a b rhyme in the middle of the last line as well as an a rhyme at the end. I kind of did that once. So. Let’s call mine Variations on Clogyrnachs.
According to our researchy sister Sara Lewis Holmes, this form was traditionally trotted out for weddings and funerals. She did a string with a wedding theme so I decided to tackle the other end of the spectrum — the funerals. Here goes….
Variations on Clogyrnachs for a Funeral
Liz Garton Scanlon
Who lies under suburban lawns?
A grumpy dog, all bark and brawn,
guinea pigs, two birds,
a frog. Whispered words:
good-bye, good boy, go on.
Who rests in peace in such a place?
It’s noisy, smoggy, there’s no space!
But wait, a headstone
This smooth green breath like grace.
Who’s in the hearse that’s driving by,
that oh-so-silent long black sigh –
Someone’s first-born son?
Someone’s precious one?
Someone who hears us cry?
Who’s in the wardrobe down the hall?
Who wears a ghoulish grin, a shawl?
Are you ghost or dream?
Are you what you seem?
Memory tricks us all.
If you’d like to read more of this quirky form, visit my pals!
And for more poetry in general, check out Poetry Friday this week at my pal Penny’s blog A Penny and Her Jots!! Enjoy, all!