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Thursday, September 30, 2021

inklings october challenge: hybrid forms

Greetings, Poetry Friday people!  Go here to learn more about this weekly fiesta de poesía.  I do not actually have any poesia in Spanish today, but I have certainly been enjoying some Spanish-language poetry in translation at Poem-a-Day.

Instead I have my response to Mary Lee's challenge to our group of INKLINGS this month.  


We are taking it in whatever way it works, and my version is  "Explain a poetry form (ode, elegy, sonnet, limerick, etc) using that form." Me being me, it got a little hairier and more complex even than that. (I felt very seen reading this quote yesterday in the NYT from their two-time Pulitzer winner for criticism, Wesley Morris: “I can be paralyzed by my glut of ideas,” he said, “which often means I wait to write things until the last minute.”)

So here, without further ado about nothing, is my

In case you have not met a definito before, it is my own invention, a form the rules of which I have now resoundingly broken: the definito is a free verse poem of 8-12 lines (aimed at readers 8-12 years old) that highlights wordplay as it demonstrates the meaning of a less common word, which always ends the poem. 

But hey--you make it, you break it!  

 I believe this month's offerings will be even more varied than usual, and I believe you will love every one.  Start with Catherine's at Reading to the Core, as she is our hostess with the mostess this week.  Then pop around and enjoy all the INKLINGS have to offer. 

Mary Lee Hahn @ A(nother) Year of Reading
Molly Hogan @ Nix the Comfort Zone
Linda Mitchell @ A Word Edgewise
Margaret Simon @ Reflections on the Teche


  1. !! "Pivot/give it"
    This is a Lin Manuel Miranda-esque rhyme! Love!

    Very cool, Heidi. You make me learn and smile at the same time.


  2. Once again, you amaze me with your ability to play with language to turn a line. Perfecto!

  3. Oh. My. Goodness. A "Hybrid Petrarchan Definito." Only you. With "donne it/sonnet," and "runningly/cunningly." Wowser.

  4. Cool! I never heard of Definito. So clever how you combine three forms here in rhyme sequence and how you introduce and define the volta. So fun. I know this took some time to write and I always love to think about sonnets though it's not easy to write one.

  5. See, now THIS is the very "definito" of an overachiever - both playing with form AND rhyme AND getting the definition of a poem type in there! Kinda. Mostly. I'm impressed you've made up a new form!

  6. So clever!! (I bow to you) :)

  7. Heidi, wow. I learned a lot about sonnet types and the volta. I have a lot more to learn. Clever rhyming throughout!

  8. Whoa! You have some mad word play skills, Heidi, and this effort shows them off brilliantly. What a great and ambitious response to the challenge!

  9. Oh, you make me laugh with "you make it you break it." How do you do this amazing, funny and wonderful "last minute" hybrid poem? I would love to have your brain for a day. I might be tired for a week after that. But, you have the best ideas. "donne it" made me laugh again. Oh, just a great poem for this challenge.

  10. You never cease to amaze me, Heidi! I have many "fair gripes" with sonnets, so I am completely in awe of your ability to weave in so much information about the form while maintaining the strict confines of syllable counts and rhyme schemes. Well done!

  11. This is just dazzling. I love "quick-runningly" and "cunningly," and yes I did pick up that Donne allusion, bless my little English major heart! Perfection!

  12. Wow, wrapping my little gray cells around your hybrid—ooo that's good Heidi, love the hybrid rhino-zebra too, thanks!

  13. Thank you all--I lifted the "cunningly" line from one of John Donne's Holy Sonnets: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44108/holy-sonnets-i-am-a-little-world-made-cunningly
    A little thievery goes a long way in poetry, don't you find?

  14. I love this form Heidi and will definitely have to try it. The age range is it created for are my favorite ages of students with whom to work! And, I love the word play in it as well! Right up my alley! I get the sense that you are an intense person - which I am also - so here's to being paralyzed by ideas and the need to get them out! Carol from The Apples in my Orchard!

  15. This poem is a whirlwind of complexity, energy and enthusiasm, Heidi. Well done you, making rules to break them!

  16. Wow, having written both sonnets and definitos, I am awed by your combination of the two! I especially love your closing couplet.
    And yes, surprising Synchronicity in how I, too, shared a poem that defined its form this week along with you Inklings.


Thanks for joining in the wild rumpus!