December 2nd, 2005

Egrets Reading

Cinquain accepted for The Sword Review

My cinquain, "Implosion", was accepted for an upcoming issue of The Sword Review.

Speaking of The Sword Review, Marcie Tentchoff wrote a recent column on rhyme and how it is often misused in poetry.

IMO, this is the root of the problem with formal poetry in the eyes of some editors. It's not that they necessarily dislike rhyming poetry, it's just that they have developed such an aversion to badly rhyming poetry that they are no longer willing to take the risk and look at ANYTHING that rhymes anymore.

We've all read these things - contorted writing where it is obvious that the word was selected simply because it rhymes even though it adds nothing, perhaps even detracts from the meaning of the poem.

Similar pitfalls wait for syllable counting poets. For awhile, I developed a particular aversion to enjambment in cinquains. This came about mostly because in the course of reading submissions for Amaze, I waded through too many "cinquains" that really shouldn't be cinquains - sentences chopped up at random to fit into the 2-4-6-8-2 format.

Can enjambment work in cinquain writing? Yes, when there's a purpose for slow down a poem or to build to a climax, for example. But, chopping a phrase apart simply to artificially arrange the poem into a cinquain format doesn't cut it for me.