dorsimbra pic(Photo found at Vanished Americana)

Mary Margaret Carlisle’ Sol Magazine  is a terrific source for poetic forms.

For this week’s poetic form, In-form Poet is attempting to make rhymers and non-rhymers alike happy.  Will we succeed?  You’ll have to tell us.  But how?  Why?  Because we will be writing the Dorsimbra.

So, what is a Dorsimbra?

According to Sol Magazine:

The Dorsimbra, a poetry form created by Eve Braden, Frieda Dorris and Robert Simonton, is a set form of three stanzas of four lines each.  Since the Dorsimbra requires three different sorts of form writing, enjambment can help to achieve fluidity between stanzas, while internal rhymes and near-rhymes can help tie the stanzas together.

Stanza One:  Four lines of Shakespearean sonnet (iambic pentameter [daDUM daDUM daDUM daDUM daDUM] rhymed abab).
Stanza Two:  Four lines of short and snappy free verse.
Stanza Three:  Four lines of iambic pentameter blank verse (un-rhymed verse), where the last line repeats the first line of Stanza One.

Here’s my attempt (and yes, you are quite right for noting that I love to use epigraphs.  You can do so too, but don’t feel as if you have to.): 


“There are no rules of architecture for castles in the sky.” ~Gilbert K. Chesterton

I watch the wisps of clouds, like dreams, drift by.
I wonder what it would be like to live
amidst cumulus turrets.  And then I
remember that clouds are more like a sieve
when it comes
to things like moats.
I could get soaked
if I forgot my umbrella.
Right now, it doesn’t look like it will rain,
but castles in the sky are changeable.
Imagination is my umbrella.
I watch the wisps of clouds, like dreams, drift by.

© copyright RJ Clarken – 2013


Ready, set…start poeming! ~RJ


Carry On.

“I read poetry to save time.” ~ Marilyn Monroe

If time stood still, would I continue on?
Would forward movement cease then to exist?
Could sun and moon be viewed from dusk to dawn,
And deadlines not be met, yet not be missed?

We all kill time
All the time
All the time
Marches on.

I have so many questions in my heart,
My mind cannot begin to comprehend.
As minutes tick, I steal away to think:
If time stood still, would I continue on?

© copyright Marie Elena Good – 2013

And hey, while you’re dashing off poetry, why not dash off to Robert Lee Brewer’s Poetic Asides to pen a “Vision” poem?  Perhaps you have a Dorsimbra Vision just dying to get out.


  1. Marie Elena – I love your Dorsimbra! You have perfectly captured the spirit of the form (IMHO.) I almost can hear the metronome ticking off the beats of time.

  2. Blackberry Stains

    We’ve been here all the afternoon, just me
    And you, entangled in a maze of thorns,
    Where none but birds and Mother Nature see
    Your soft caress, my shirt and trousers torn;

    We’ve laid aside
    Our berry bowls,
    No pretense
    Any more;

    Our searching lips have left bright purple stains,
    And there’s a vibrant one upon my neck:
    I’ll be in trouble later when it’s seen,
    But God knows I don’t care, so carry on…

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013

  3. I am still ‘learning’ iambic, so not sure if I on the same drum beat ya-all are. 🙂

    I’ll go to see the house that Jack had built,
    I stopped, a look of shock upon my face
    It sat and tilted down without a stilt
    Unknown is how the house could stay in place.

    Around Jack’s house,
    Just as it sits,
    I would not choose
    To stay or play.

    The beams are short; the roof’s a leaking sieve
    I see a light that peaks in through a hole
    where holes are not to be. Don’t hold your breath
    I’ll go (again) to see the house that Jack had built.


    My old umbrella has a hole in it;
    the hole is at the pole, and water slips
    and splashes me, no matter where I sit.
    But that’s my life: I always catch the drips
    and bums and nitwits
    who run to have their fun
    at my expense.
    I think I must have been cursed
    at birth to live a life so full of strives
    that never reach fruition. How I wish,
    just once, to find an uncracked dish. Ah, but
    my old umbrella has a hole in it.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  5. DORSIMBRA (dorsimbra)

    I wonder where to place the stresses here:
    on “dor” and “bra,” or is it on the “sim”?
    The three who made the form are friends, I fear,
    and I would hate to hurt the hers, or him.
    The form is tripartite,
    of separate qualities,
    the reflection, I presume,
    of their personalities,
    and as I try to make the pieces fit
    together, with a shake and squeeze and grunt,
    I worry more about the title line:
    I wonder. Where to place the stresses here?

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  6. Dorsimbra for August 28,2013 Bloom

    “You must believe: A poem is a holy thing _ a good poem, that is.” Theodore Roethke

    “This Prayer”

    My poem, on bended knees, with its conceit
    I honor Shakespeare’s sonnet for four lines.
    I write my rhyme; respectful and complete
    in rhythm, soulful; not to sting or whine.

    Then, outlaw lines
    have forced their way
    mid muddled thought
    befuddled prayer.

    This holiness I seek with drafted note;
    a particip`ial phrase of crafted care.
    My prayer: romance of thought_repetitious!
    If superstitious, still: my song be heard.

  7. True enough, but as a poet, you are permitted to take poetic or literary license. Nevertheless, it’s an easy matter to correct, but in any event, you penned a lovely poem.

  8. The night is even more richly coloured than the day. . . . If only one pays attention to it, one sees that certain stars are citron yellow, while others have a pink glow or a green, blue and forget-me-not brilliance. And without my expiating on this theme, it should be clear that putting little white dots on a blue-black surface is not enough. — Vincent van Gogh, letter to sister, September 1888

    Behold, look up, the night is richly dyed
    with shades and hues that glow from deep within
    the midnight sky sketched across vast and wide,
    from hemisphere to hemisphere it spins

    a tale of Greek mythology
    the Ram, Pisces, and the twins
    immortalized in paint and pen
    on earth and in the starry sky.
    An unseen hand with strokes both bold and slight
    dipped a brush into a mystic prism
    and painted citron, jade, and silver blue.
    Behold, look up, the night is richly dyed.

  9. Marie: And deadlines not be met, yet not be missed? We all kill time
    All the time… I like this very much

    RJ: You have such an agile imagination- I love reading your whimsical and your funnies! Don’t lose that umbrella!

  10. Pingback: Stirred | Metaphors and Smiles

  11. Stirred
    “If a thing loves, it is infinite.” ~William Blake
    I ask-can water keep from loving stone
    as it flows kissing its speckled surface-
    does it not feel comforted and at home
    cheered to carry on by granite’s smooth face?
    And how,
    oh how, I query,
    can river not adore rock
    as it pours forth?
    Won’t the sea flow unfettered and lovely
    ceaselessly giving, incensed with life-force,
    alive with the union of all that breathes…
    I ask-can water keep from loving stone?
    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2013

  12. RELAX

    My own advice is not to stress too much
    about things that you simply can’t control,
    like tides and taxes, things that squeak and such;
    to worry only makes your stomach roll.
    Think instead of berries —
    black and blue and red —
    or cherries, possibly,
    or bedtime and some crackers,
    for these, the little things, are all you need
    to feel contentment when the day is through.
    Do not sweat big stuff, matey; that is what
    my own advice is. Not to stress too much.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  13. Trip

    Alaska lies ahead of me today.
    Excitement fills my heart, I plan and pack.
    I pray all will go smoothly and His way.
    It will seem like no time until I’m back.

    ziplines, hikes, dances
    bikes, canoes, jeeps,
    wildlife, scenery, malamutes
    friends, grins, love

    I’m grateful for this opportunity.
    At times, I’m tempted to decline such joy,
    remembering past pains and others’, but
    Alaska lies ahead of me today.


    It’s something to think about: Dreams come true,
    While some insist the best-laid plans of men
    And women go awry. There are so few
    Who dream, then live the deed, and dream again.

    Not the night dreaming
    That’s just so much brain play
    Or indigestion: nonsensical romps
    In gray forests or unknown city streets.

    Courageous people never put down dreams
    That others claim are far beyond their reach.
    Instead, they stretch themselves beyond their grasp.
    It’s something to think about: Dreams come true.



    It’s odd, but you see, I watch baseball games,
    and no matter where I might see them all;
    in minor leagues or major, all the names
    that ever played come back at each “play ball”:
    Mathewson; Mack;
    Gehrig and Ruth;
    Musial and Williams and Koufax
    and Aaron and Mays, and Jeter too;
    and then there are the names I never knew
    and never shall, but even so I know
    them also, just as if their plaques were in the Hall.
    It’s odd. But you see, I watch baseball games.

    copyright 2013, William Preston


    The endless stretch of road is smaller now.
    We make the best of mileage that remains.
    We view memories as a field to plow,
    the autumn harvest of dreams, joys and pains.

    Town to town,
    people stare
    confused about
    where to go.

    There are no street lights to brighten this road,
    no map to show us where the journey ends,
    the only clue in undetermined miles.
    The endless stretch of road is smaller now.

    © Susan Schoeffield

  17. He’s the Cat’s Meow

    If cats could talk, my cat would talk a lot
    Except, of course, when he is fast asleep
    Which, by the way, is quite a chunk of time
    His sleeping habits tend to rule his days

    But when awake
    For goodness sake
    The noise he makes
    Is constant

    If meows were words, he’s got it going
    So many that sometimes he goes hoarse
    Then he just opens his mouth to speak
    And the sound that comes out is pitiful
    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  18. Not Invisible

    “Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.” ~Jonathan Swift

    When you look beyond the self-evident,
    of what’s right in front of your very nose,
    you give yourself the OK, the consent
    to use your mind to see where it all goes.
    You can fly;
    You can dance;
    You can reach out
    and make change happen,
    but in order to do this you will need
    vision, and that requires a leap, a chance…
    Then, in the end, you will never have to say,
    “I should have done…” since you already did.


  19. Somewhere in the Night

    In middle night without the light, I wake
    I click the lamp, adjust the shade, my pen
    I find, under my pad of paper lake.
    The words rush out, they yell, they shout, and then

    Jump out of bed
    to find my desk
    First clobber toe,
    Stay quiet

    I turn my laptop on again to save
    my soul from anguish that just might set in
    if I should choose to stay in bed. Instead,
    in middle night without the light, I wake.

  20. I think I got this one according to the rules. Hope so.


    Eternity awaits for all who seek
    Eternity on high forevermore
    Oh, how we’d change our minds if we could peek
    Just one quick glimpse inside through Heaven’s door

    Just close your eyes
    Ask God so wise
    Then visualize

    He will give you the glimpse that you seek
    Unfathomable, mindboggling perfection
    All you’ll ever need to make you believe
    Eternity awaits for all who seek

    © 2103 Earl Parsons

  21. Elephants

    A rumble moves my jars across the room,
    a horn carries my eardrums out the door.
    Fearing my house will soon become my tomb,
    I fall and slowly try to cross the floor.
    Doors slam,
    voices yell,
    four hellions
    invade my space.
    They come to raid my frig and drink me dry
    then leave as quickly as they came, slam door,
    voices yell and then slowly fade away –
    a rumble moves my jars across the room.

  22. Wordless

    “Sometimes there are things that don’t have words.” Karen Karnes, master potter

    He sculpted always looking in the clay
    for something living scratching its way out,
    some spirit trapped in earth, with lots to say
    His hands would free its voice and let it shout.
    She watched him
    mumbling at work
    with chatty clay
    or sullen stone.
    Her pots spun outward opening their lips,
    revealing silent smiles and muted tones,
    her pots in quiet dignity stood still.
    He sculpted always looking in the clay.

  23. The Dream

    Last night I had a dream, so real,
    you stood beside my bed, and smiled.
    No words were said yet I could feel
    your love, your strength, a dad to child.

    Remember how I begged you
    to read, The Princess And The Pea,
    over and over? Sometimes you changed
    the words; the story was better.

    Those lovely illustrations, drawn in colored ink
    of castles, princes, far off places, horses
    that pulled those handsome coaches. Daddy,
    last night I had a dream, so real.

  24. The Miserable Gardener

    Sprouts of green I water and daily tend,
    I dream summer spiced blooms, and desire
    just to hold your scent, inhaling I spend
    last August days, your touch I so require.

    But turns out you’re
    a crappy little weed, tending
    a stray invader seed,
    a prick-me, bleedin’ thorn you are!

    So think me not bitter, nor wish me no ill
    if this garden does just as it will,
    and I’ll nap in the sun ‘til weeding’s at end –
    sprouts of green I water and daily tend.

  25. One-Note Samba Dorsimbra

    “This is just a little samba built upon a single note. Other notes are sure to follow but the root is still that note.” ~Samba de Uma Nota Só (One Note Samba,) Antonio Carlos Jobim and Newton Medonça, as sung/recorded by Ella Fitzgerald, Rosemary Clooney, Nancy Wilson etal.

    Jazz aficionados have been heard
    to wax poetic over just one note,
    one salsa/tango/rumba note, conferred
    by a song diva with a silver throat.
    A symbol, a movement
    in 2/4 tempo
    batucada rhythm
    that starts with one note.
    And then strings and trumpets join the party
    Brazilian. Bossa Nova. Vocals. Dance.
    But samba itself is not just one note:
    jazz aficionados have been heard.


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