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First Flowers - a Poetry Friday post

Today, I'm sharing a raccontino, which is a new form for me to work in. Heck, for all I know, it's a newer form in general. All I know is that this is what the Poetry Princesses opted to write for this month, so I opted in and wrote mine.

What, you may ask, is a raccontino? It's a form written in couplets, to start with. The first lines need not rhyme with anything, but all the "B" lines rhyme, so it's roughly XBXBXBXB. Only there's no set length, so it could be as few as four lines, and as long as you want to make it. About the first lines in the couplets: the end words should work together to tell a story of their own, especially when read with the title.

I wrote mine by figuring out a topic, then picking the end words for the odd-numbered lines, then writing toward them, with an eye toward finishing my first couplet using a word with lots of rhyme potential. Other people went about it a bit differently (eyes Sara Lewis Holmes). This form was brought to our attention by Tricia Stohr-Hunt, who ganked it from Helen Frost. You can read Tricia's excellent post on raccontinos at her blog, The Miss Rumpus Effect.

Without further ado, here's mine:

First Flowers
by Kelly Ramsdell Fineman

Despite chill temperatures, crocuses spring
from the ground, demanding we look

beyond ourselves, so that our steps
don’t crush saffron centers. By the brook,

their colors - purple, yellow, white - all out,
so much finery from an Easter book.

Here are the links to the raccontinos written by my lovely poetry sisters:

Sara Lewis Holmes at Read Write Believe.

Tanita Davis at Fiction, Instead of Lies.

Andi Jazmon at A Wrung Sponge.

Laura Purdie Salas at her website, who wrote hers while in Ireland.

Liz Garton Scanlon at Liz in Ink.

Tricia Stor-Hunt at The Miss Rumphius Effect, who got us started with this form.

I hope you'll check out all six of the other poems, and if you want still more poetry, click the box below for the Poetry Friday roundup.

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( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 3rd, 2015 01:54 pm (UTC)
Love this
I love the changes you made, Kelly. And you accomplished what I struggled with: to make it appear simple, elegant, and EASY! I know it wasn't easy, but yours makes it look that way. Sigh...
--Laura Purdie Salas

Edited at 2015-04-03 01:55 pm (UTC)
Apr. 4th, 2015 07:00 pm (UTC)
Re: Love this
But Laura, yours was so lush and evocative! The grass is always greener on the other side.
TS Davis
Apr. 3rd, 2015 02:52 pm (UTC)
Lovely crocuses!
As I look at yours, I think I should have gone shorter. I TOTALLY should have gone shorter. This is lovely, and I like how it works itself out to a clean simplicity - while burgeoning with colors and imagery.

I totally should have gone shorter. This is excellent.
Apr. 4th, 2015 07:01 pm (UTC)
Re: Lovely crocuses!
You are hilarious. And your poem was gorgeous. And I was a total wuss, which is why I went so short - I didn't have the cajones to go longer!
Sara Lewis Holmes
Apr. 3rd, 2015 03:00 pm (UTC)
I'll forever think of crocuses as demanding because of you. In a good way, of course. I will stop and give them their due. :)

Apr. 4th, 2015 07:02 pm (UTC)
They totally deserve their due!
Apr. 3rd, 2015 07:48 pm (UTC)
This is just delicious, Kelly!
Apr. 4th, 2015 07:02 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Andi Sibley
Apr. 3rd, 2015 08:25 pm (UTC)
"Demanding we look beyond ourselves..." Yes! A new reason to love crocus! Simple beautiful poem, Kelly!
Apr. 4th, 2015 07:02 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Andi!
Amy Ludwig VanDerwater
Apr. 3rd, 2015 10:23 pm (UTC)
It IS Easter finery! Yes. I love the cleanness of this - so pure, like spring herself. We have yellow crocuses across the street - demanding we looklooklook! I adore this series of poems from you princesses. Happy Poetry Friday! xo, a.
Apr. 4th, 2015 07:03 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the kind words Amy - this form was fun to try.
Linda Baie
Apr. 3rd, 2015 11:02 pm (UTC)
I've been reading all of these all the day, Kelly, & they are wonderful, each one unique in its story, each one a pleasure. This is a favorite spring thing of mine, those colors springing out all of a sudden. Thank you!
Apr. 4th, 2015 07:04 pm (UTC)
Crocuses are such hopeful flowers, since they insist on turning up even if it's still cold outside. Glad you've enjoyed the poems!
Mary Lee Hahn
Apr. 4th, 2015 01:44 pm (UTC)
This is my favorite so far. (shhhh...don't tell the others). You did so much with so few words AND you were true to the form. HUZZAH!
Apr. 4th, 2015 07:04 pm (UTC)
Aww, thanks Mary Lee. And I promise not to tell!
Apr. 6th, 2015 11:35 am (UTC)

How beautifully captured.
Apr. 6th, 2015 07:45 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Myra!
Apr. 7th, 2015 11:48 am (UTC)
I like it! Both your poem and the form. I'm going to give it a go.
Apr. 7th, 2015 08:41 pm (UTC)
Thanks! Hope you write one!
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )

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