For this week’s In-form Poet, I’m giving all you wonderful poets a gift. You see, the form Sonnetina Tre, which typically is penned in rhyme and metric form, doesn’t necessarily have to be so, as you’ll see when you read the description below (per The Poets Garret.)

“This Sonnetina form comprises of two quatrains and a couplet (Three Stanzas). The normal sequence is two quatrains and then a couplet, (One stanza short of a Shakespearean Sonnet). There is however, the mini-Dorn [Sonnet] to consider: this variation consists of a quatrain, a couplet and then a closing quatrain, (Dorn uses sestets instead of quatrains).

There are various forms of quatrain, ranging from free verse, rhyming couplets, alternate line rhyme or an envelope, so there is a certain amount of flexibility here. No meter is stated, but tetrameter or pentameter is normal.”

For our purposes, this means essentially that you are being challenged today to write a Sonnet(ish) poem (or two or three or more.) The only major requirements are that you include in your poem two quatrains with a couplet, or one sestet with two couplets or one quatrain. Got it? Good!

Here are a few of my examples:

Sweet Temptress

O, sweet icing I have to swirl on this cake:
you tempt me so, with sugar and cream.
I am full of desire which I cannot shake.
You are my confectionery dream.

Just one tiny taste, and no one should detect
it. I’ll still have plenty left to ice.
Then, just a few more spoonfuls. Oh! Have I wrecked
it? Now I can’t even frost a slice!

Well, I guess I’d better be off to the store
and hope that I can find a tub or two more!


Go To Sleep, Caitie

Sitting in bed with my most bestest book,
bunny ears on…let the magic begin.
This is the moment I love. Take a look…
“Go to sleep, Caitie!” “Hey Mom, in a min.”

I’m up to the chapter right near the close,
and what happens next? A conjurer’s trick!
I know how this ends, but – fun to suppose…
“Go to sleep, Caitie!” “Hey Mom, in a tic.”

I’m finally finished. Gosh, that was fun!
“Go to sleep, Caitie!” “Okay Mom. I’m done.”


Seven Girls

Faded background, long ringlet curls:
sign of the times from yesteryear.
The worn faces of seven girls
wearing vague smiles, mostly austere.
Updated background, tattoos and swirls:
sign of the times from modern day.
Made-up faces of seven girls:
wholly different kind of display.
Times have changed; and that resonates. It’s true…
each photograph could capture me or you.

(Note: this was also an Ekphrastic poem, because it was written to a photographic/picture prompt. In it, the screen was split: on one side were seven little girls whose appearance seems to indicate a time frame from around the early 1900s. The opposite side of the screen shows seven teen/young adult girls who are considerably more ‘modern’ in appearance.)


So…are you up to the challenge? I think you are. Ready…set…start poeming!

(One final note: As you read this post, please know that I am studying for finals. I won’t be able to get back to you and comment on your poems until sometime on Friday. By this post, I will have already taken two finals [on Tuesday] but am facing two more finals on Thursday. I apologize for the delays, but please know that I will be looking forward to reading your work when I finish up my school term.)


Keeping Watch

Joseph leads with somber grace
A weary donkey slows the pace
A restless Babe in Mary’s womb
An empty trough will hold Him soon

Anticipation grips the earth
A star will mark the foretold birth
There’s something in the air tonight
Compelling truth will come to light

The angels watch with trembling wing
Awaiting birth of infant King

© Marie Elena Good, 2013


SANneTinA Tres
Way up North, as the tale is told,
where the wind blows hard and cold,
the “Legend” lives amongst the pines
planted neatly in straight lines.

A jolly sort, who shakes and jingles,
one of the Merry Christmas Kringles
who with his Mrs., as I hear it,
are keepers of the Christmas Spirit.

They shine all year without applause,
Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus!

© Walter J Wojtanik, 2013


  1. Dance of the Gingerbread Cookies

    The Gingerbreads have come to dance tonight:
    With candy eyes and icing sugar clothes,
    Oh what a wondrous, scrumptious, darling sight
    They make, all dancing sweetly – there one goes!

    The Gingerbreads have danced the night away:
    So, out of breath, they climb back into bed;
    As morning heralds in the light of day
    They’re fast asleep with blankets overhead…

    The child in her pj’s taps her chin:
    “Why have the Gingerbreads all grown so thin?”

    © Copyright Erin Kay Hope – 2013


    Today, if you would have a trade,
    you need a mark of certainty;
    it seems you need a plaque displayed
    or even have a third degree.

    You have to show your competence
    to set a bone or split some logs;
    or tune a car; or mend a fence;
    or bake cupcakes; or walk some dogs;

    or make new bricks; or cut up vinyls.
    But first you have to pass your finals.

    copyright 2013, William Preston


    The snow has flowed into huge, swirling drifts
    that circumnavigate the tree-lined scenes
    behind the hedgerow and the fallen barn.
    The shapes entrance; the whole resembles gifts
    assembled underneath the evergreens
    and wrapped in glistening bows of homespun yarn.

    The storm has passed; the sky is high and blue;
    the birds commune with winter’s low-flung sun
    as though to welcome it from autumn’s rue:
    its journey to the zenith has begun.

    copyright 2013, William Preston


    Snow is falling fast and freely,
    heaping up before I shovel;
    seeing skies so grey and steely,
    here I hide, inside my hovel,

    hoping that the storm will falter
    and the sun once more will shine.
    Drifts are taller than Gibralter;
    pity, please, this back of mine;

    send some Boy Scouts, strong and hearty.
    Tell them it’s a sledding party.

    copyright 2013, William Preston

  5. RJ:

    As usual, your examples are brilliant and plentiful! I don’t know how you do it! Thanks for introducing me to this form. I think this one will be in my top 5 faves.

    And in case I haven’t told you lately, you ROCK!

  6. Pingback: Mini-sonnet | Vivinfrance's Blog

  7. Christmas Wish

    By David De Jong

    I’ll take this time to make a wish,
    Proclaiming it via satellite dish.
    To: each and all, young and old, girl or boy,
    May your Christmas be filled with lasting joy.

    May your hearts overflow; with love, good cheer,
    May it reside with you throughout the year.
    May God grant you; peace in your soul,
    May He heal brokenness, make you whole.

    May God look upon you with smiling face.
    May God Bless you, with His Amazing Grace.


    Merry Christmas Everyone!

    Enjoying the Season
    Enjoying the Reason
    Celebrating Life

  8. Two Naughty Gifts

    Tumbling teddy bears romp and roam
    Exploring the inner chambers of their newfound home.
    Collaborating quickly to ignite the fun,
    Two naughty teddy bears, while the night stands young.

    Transcending the stairs, barreling down wooden banisters.
    Backflips-n-twists, sledding slick in open kitchen canisters.
    Punning fun without a conscience,
    Bowling oranges in open lanes.
    Splashing egg nog and jousting with candy canes.

    One roiled Mom appears “get back in those boxes!” applying the gift wrap.
    Grudgingly, those two naughty bears take their nap.

  9. Christmas Wish

    “I feel no Christmas,” cried a little girl,
    “I don’t feel any of the Christmas cheer…
    The tree is up and lit, the garlands swirl,
    And Rudolph leads his pack of swift reindeer,

    But I feel nothing,” sobbing would not cease.
    Old Santa hugged her, “Don’t be sad, my dear,
    They are not always real – the things one sees,
    What’s real is hidden from the eye, but near.

    So close your eyes, put on your largest grin,
    Unlock your heart and let your Christmas in.”


    How I love that Christmas cardboard
    bearing gifts for our lab and hound,
    for family and friends adored,
    shipped UPS and FedEx Ground.

    Cardboard boxes fill the kitchen,
    tucked in ev’ry nook and cranny.
    Are there books or clothes bewitchin’?
    Fleecy pants to warm the fanny?

    How I love a Christmas teaser,
    but I cannot reach the freezer!

    © Susan Schoeffield

  11. First To The Shepherds

    An angel appeared to the shepherds by night
    With the glory of God shining ‘round him bright
    When the shepherds saw, they froze in alarm
    But this was an angel who meant them no harm

    “Fear not, for I come with a message of joy
    For you must go find a newly born boy”
    Then the skies filled up with a heavenly throng
    Praising God for his love with a wonderful song

    The shepherds went quickly to Bethlehem town
    They found their King, and they all bowed down

    © 2013 Earl Parsons

  12. What If?

    If you scoop up all your somedays
    and clasp them in your hands,
    they often become no-ways
    slipping through like shifting sands.

    But with much dedication
    you may see that they become
    built on a strong foundation,
    more than all the parts, a sum.

    Not the lint you’d find hiding in your pocket.
    Rather, something worthy of hanging in a locket.

    Ellen Evans 12.18.13
    a “someday” poem for PA
    a sonnetina tre for PB

  13. Doing some revisions, and this form seemed really suited for one I was working on. Thanks


    How long has the North Wind blown,
    and the sun repeated its mornings?
    How many years have there been waves, to grow
    old watching? How long has there been time?

    If I were a house, I would be empty–
    no doors or glass, roof caving in.
    I want. I want a map of Italy
    tattooed on my spine, the shadow of your hand.

    How long is dereliction?
    How cold and vacant is the wind?

  14. Pingback: Cardboard Christmas | Words With Sooze


    Love grows where e’er it is sown,
    for when it is truly shown,
    love can move mountains; change the course
    of lives, end strife – it is a giving force.

    In the scheme of things
    life is what e’er love brings.

    Truth blooms in the room where e’er hearts reside,
    and love has no where e’er to hide.
    It should be worn proud, shouted loud,
    love grows when e’er shared amongst the crowd

    © Walter J Wojtanik – 2013

  16. Global Warming Christmas

    We gather ‘round a fire in our minds,
    lay on the logs and smoky memories,
    as phantom moments flit about and tease
    us into reminiscence, all designed

    to let imagination take away
    the sting of a December hot and clear,
    no snow, no chill, no winter weather fear.
    We decorated coatless yesterday!

    Around a tree, we sing and reminisce
    about white childhood Christmases we miss.

  17. Sometime

    Yes, everybody’s gotta learn sometime
    The kindergarten basics of friendship
    To share, to care, to reason and to rhyme
    To sweetly solve problems, to get a grip

    Yes everybody’s gotta learn sometime
    We are temporary people on earth
    Taking a downhill slide after the climb
    And then inevitable second birth

    So let’s enjoy the moments while we can
    Till that sometime, when we shed the old man

  18. Love (A growing Sonnetina Tre)

    Love comes –
    New homes
    are made,
    plans laid.

    Changing roads
    heavy loads,
    burdens lie,
    time seeps by…

    The rising sun –
    peace, love has won.

  19. Reading Buddies

    I discovered a friend today.
    We stumbled into each other
    hastening to the book display.
    Then, we smiled one to another

    and laughed reaching for the same book.
    “She’s my favorite author, you too?”
    I nodded, “She pens the best crooks,
    Of course that’s just my point of view.”

    We agreed except, well, you know,
    I liked Miss Marple, she Poirot.

  20. We Journeyed, Grasping at Rails

    Unfurl and set long these tattered sails,
    set course toward unknown this boat,
    dip these broad oars in calm winds of hope,
    as we fly deep into sunset’s flushed pale.

    We flee, we leave behind all we know,
    we fly entangled, entwined in rope,
    set us un-anchored, grasping at rails,
    set us long into these billowing sails.

    We search these seas for peace and wisdom,
    a place for quiet contemplation. A kingdom.

  21. Pingback: We Journeyed, Grasping at Rails | The Chalk Hills Journal

  22. Trip To New York

    On the plane, children whining
    no such thing as fine dining.
    Every seat taken on this flight
    sitting in coach, squeezed in tight.

    I’ve done the crossword in magazine
    took sit-up naps in between.
    I’ve looked for bargains in Sky Mall
    Imaginary purchases were quite a haul.

    With constant queues for the rest room,
    I can only hope we will land soon.

    Written for Poetic Bloomings In-Form/sonnetina tre

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