Mirror Sestet picture

Because the Byron’s Sonnet brought up a little discussion of sestets and octaves, I thought it might be interesting – and challenging – to try another form of the six-line sestet.  The description and rules of the Mirror Sestet are shown below, but the explanation and further examples can be found at Shadow Poetry .

What is kind of cool is that this form can be rhymed, or not – whichever you prefer.  And, as no metrics were mentioned, you can use whatever sort of metrics that please you.

The Mirror Sestet, created by Shelley A. Cephas, is a poem that can be written in one or more stanzas of 6 lines each. The specific guidelines for this form are as follows:

The first word of line 1 rhymes with the last word of line 1.
The first word of line 2 is the last word of line 1
and the last word of line 2 is the 1st word of line 1.

The first word of line 3 rhymes with the last word of line 3.
The first word of line 4 is the last word of line 3
and the last word of line 4 is the 1st word of line 3.

The first word of line 5 rhymes with the last word of line 5.
The first word of line 6 is the last word of line 5
and the last word of line 6 is the 1st word of line 5.

The Mirror Sestet can also be written in non-rhyme.  All rules must be followed except there is no 1st and last word rhyming.

All right?  Write, all!

And on that note, here’s my mirror(ish) attempt:


“You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul.” ~George Bernard Shaw

O glass which shows my face, you know…
…know that you’re my reflection. O
glass, o mirror, there’s impasse…
…impasse because you are just glass
and not a work of art, first hand…
…hand that paints a masterpiece, and

I long to see my soul.  My eye…
…eye is only human, so I
attempt beyond, but I’m exempt…
…exempt from that which I’d attempt.
Still, I can gaze.  It’s what I will…
…will I find me?  I’m searching still.



Online Dating Service

You got a call from God-knows-who
Who may be playing tricks on you.
He said he’d meet you here at three.
Three came and went without a he.
There may be cause for pause. Beware.
Beware! There are some creeps out there.

© copyright 2013, Marie Elena Good

(Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons (; 19th Century)


  1. Last Leaf

    See the leaves swirling around me,
    Me and the tree, there goes one, see?
    Turning and tumbling and spinning,
    Spinning while different hues turning:
    Gold and red for us to catch; hold,
    Hold this last leaf of red and gold.

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013


    Birds are too marvellous for words;
    words are too limiting for birds,
    for a bird is life, and so much more,
    more than mere words can bargain for.
    Write I must, though, and my words take flight;
    flight that a bird limns, if a bird could write.

    copyright 2013, William Preston


    Two by two, they go marching through,
    through song and story, the intrepid two.
    They do great deeds without fuss or dismay;
    dismay never occurs to blokes such as they,
    for they teach the young, and they know the score.
    Score one for teachers and what they live for.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  4. RJ, your poem has that light touch I associate with you, but it strikes deeper than the usual fun. I think it’s most impressive and thoughtful.


    Alas, my friends, I’m not that lass,
    That lass that stole poor hearts…alas,
    No more. I’m nothing like before.
    Before I knew it all. No more.
    Now I’m as happy as a cow,
    A cow in gorgeous pastures. Now
    I say, “My youthful wisdom, bye.
    Bye, silly. Forties – sweet!” say I.

  6. Grandpa’s Lessons

    So long ago when just a child
    Child-like ways ruled me so
    My Grandpa tried to teach me right
    Right up until he died, oh, my
    He left me when he was far too young
    Young men need mentors such as he

    Now I’m in the shoes of my grandpa
    Grandpa’s lessons so important now
    To be alive to pass them on
    On to grandchildren destined to
    Learn them and apply them well
    Well they will be if well learned

    Man, to be like my Grandpa
    Grandpa was a Godly man
    Walked the walk and talked the talk
    Talk was pure wherever he walked
    One day we will meet once more
    More time to spend one-on-one

    © 2103 Earl Parsons

  7. Escape?

    Night the right time for the flight
    Flight might be right for that night
    Bright the light that shined so bright
    Bright the night the light made bright
    Fright took light as light shined bright
    Bright light might end flight in fright

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  8. Fear Not

    Fear not, for I, your Messiah, am here
    Here to calm and quench your fear
    I was sent down from My Father on high
    High on His Heavenly throne where I
    Will once again on My own throne fulfill
    Fulfill the eternal blessings of His will

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  9. Rainy Day

    Same sky of gray with dripping rain;
    Rain drops gathering on the window pane
    Same old rain keeps falling all day long
    Long wait today, but I’ll play along.
    Maybe rain is good for a flower bed,
    Bed looks so comfy, I’ll just rest my head.

  10. RJ and Marie, your poems are works of genius. You blew me away. I wanted desperately to use rhyming words rather than the same words, but being forced otherwise made for some puns I might have missed. Interesting form, RJ.

    We Are What We See

    I gaze through haze up at the sky,
    sky patched with blues that hurt the I,
    so deep and crisp is it, you know
    know blues can grow too deep and so
    we keep them overhead to see.
    See, sunlit blue’s warmer than we.

  11. A New Beau

    Oh she went to town and found a new beau,
    beau wasn’t his name but OH!
    He was handsome and smart, she couldn’t believe he was free,
    free to be with her and he
    just treated her well, being a gentleman a must!
    Must keep this one, she thinks she’s just.

  12. First Snow

    It snowed overnight, just a little bit
    bit by bit snow covered the ground, it was painted by it.
    Frosting covers the leaves and branches too, must have been exhausting,
    exhausting for you know who – she must be licking the frosting
    still from her finger tips, gave me a chill,
    chill from my nose and down to my toes, I’m chilled still.

    Rising this morning to this wonderful sight, some are despising,
    despising last night, but not me, I love each flake – rising
    this morning put a smile on my face, such bliss,
    bliss is the beauty the morning brings, this
    world is amazing, each tiny new thing, snowflakes whirled –
    whirled while we were sleeping and covered the world.

  13. Paperweight
    Contemplating this oblong rock, its weight,
    weight in my hand as I carry it home contemplating.
    Ruminating all these loose leaves-
    leaves and seasons of life ruminating.
    Thoughts swirl and one persistent leaf’s worry-fraught.
    Fraught with too much attention. Shh, thought.
    Symbolic stone’s placed, negating this inner-rhetoric.
    Rhetoric that’s negative in nature can be symbolic,
    characteristic of one who’s living out of balance.
    Balance can become one’s new ideal characteristic!
    Golden foliage finds the sky, spun-alive and beholden,
    beholden and mentally accountable for creating a future-golden.
    Copyright © Hannah Gosselin 2013

  14. Rj thank you for this form and I enjoy the idea that the mirror reflection is but a shade of gray compared to what an artist might portray in a portrait of the person…great example.

    And Marie…indeed! It’s a scary creepo-filled world out there. Ugh. Nicely done.


    Tears were concealed throughout the years,
    years that only enhanced the tears.
    Flames burned the heart with foolish games,
    games that were played to strengthen the flames.
    Lies that you used as a means for disguise
    disguise what I’m feeling with my own lies.

    © Susan Schoeffield

  16. Splashing Clouds

    The waves in sky, a rolling sea
    Sea thunders ’round and covers the
    Blue depths upon our gaze, a clue
    Clue to the heart of that most blue
    Yet heals the soul, if we’ll just let
    Let splashes mist our faces yet.


    Broken glass and fire have spoken;
    spoken to lives forever broken.
    Jews can no longer ignore the news;
    news that we Germans hate all Jews
    here in our midst. Our hate stems from fear:
    fear is the engine that brought us to here.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  18. My Season

    Show of scattered leaves are more alluring than snow
    Snow falls are wet, their beauty a white show
    Bold collage of brilliant colors unfold
    Unfold like lush carpeting in shades so bold
    You might enjoy hush of blanketed white
    White soon becomes grey, no lovely hues for you.

    (RJ, you outdid yourself on this form. I had to read it over three times!)


    When cardinals come to feeders now and then,
    then my mind flies to the homestead, when
    life was simpler. Then, there was no strife,
    strife that, nowadays, seems part of life.
    Dreams come easily these days, it seems.
    Seems like TV news calls for yet more dreams.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  20. Yes, William… it is a struggle to lead a “simpler” life, but, by golly, I am GOING TO CONTINUE TO DO SO… :)!!

  21. Hardship

    Fishing for King salmon is what I’m wishing.
    Wishing for creatures as big as my boat for fishing.

    So I venture forth, in the early morning I go.
    Go out in the ocean, ten nautical miles or so.

    Ship bears down on me, I hear my boat rip—
    rip just like paper. That’s a hard ship!


    Birds communicate without words.
    Words fall short of the songs of birds.
    We say so much, but in the tree,
    Tree of the robin, what do we
    Behold? Those hymns angelic –– gold,
    Gold melodies sweet to behold.

    Today’s the time to not delay.
    Delay and wave goodbye. Today’s
    One more wake-up call till life’s done.
    Done the last breath that everyone
    Must take. Hear the birdsong? Go rush,
    Rush right now to nature. You must!


  23. “We named the pumpkin Circle”

    Dark mold begins to color brilliant orange eyes.
    Eyes that, days past, blazed in the dark.
    Children ran up, unafraid of the night.
    Night ghouls and goblins, dressed up like children.
    Return to the earth holding these memories strong.
    Strong food you provide for next years return.

  24. Publication of drama was left, along with much of the poetry and the popular literature , to publishers who were not members of the Stationers’ Company and to the outright pirates, who scrambled for what they could get and but for whom much would never have been printed. To join this fringe, the would-be publisher had only to get hold of a manuscript, by fair means or foul, enter it as his copy (or dispense with the formality), and have it printed. Just such a man was Thomas Thorpe , the publisher of Shakespeare ’s sonnets (1609); the mysterious “Mr. W.H.” in the dedication is thought by some to be the person who procured him his copy. The first Shakespeare play to be published ( Titus Andronicus , 1594) was printed by a notorious pirate, John Danter, who also brought out, anonymously, a defective Romeo and Juliet (1597), largely from shorthand notes made during performance. Eighteen of the plays appeared in “good” and “bad” quartos before the great First Folio in 1623. A typical imprint of the time, of the “good” second quarto of Hamlet (1604), reads: “Printed by I.R. for N.L. and are to be sold at his shoppe under Saint Dunston’s Church in Fleetstreet”; i.e., printed by James Roberts for Nicholas Ling. For the First Folio, a large undertaking of more than 900 pages, a syndicate of five was formed, headed by Edward Blount and William Jaggard; the Folio was printed, none too well, by William’s son, Isaac.

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