Four New Poetic Forms

For the poetry club at Nashville State Community College, the participants asked me to prepare some lessons on some poetic forms. I decided to go with new forms. With the help of Facebook, I found a quite a few, and then I narrowed the list down to the four below. Perhaps they will be new to you, too.

The Gigan

This form was invented by poet Ruth Ellen Kocher. Kocher named the form in honor of her favorite monster from Godzilla.Gigan

Here are the rules:

  1. The poem is 16 lines.
  2. The lines are broken into couplet, tercet, couplet, couplet, couplet, tercet, couplet.
  3. Line 1 is repeated as line 11.
  4. Line 6 is repeated as line 12.
  5. Ideally, the closing couplet should put a twist on the poem.

(from https://bit.ly/3CQ6BXo)

Samples at above link

The Bop

The Bop is a form of poetic argument consisting of three stanzas, each followed by a repeated line or refrain. The first stanza is six lines and presents a problem; the second stanza is eight lines and further expands upon the problem; and the third stanza is six lines and either resolves or documents the failure of resolving the problem. . . . Afaa Michael Weaver . . . created the form during a Cave Canem writing retreat (from https://www.pw.org/content/the_bop)

To me it appears that the overall structure resembles a sonnet with the open two quatrains acting as a thesis, the following quatrain acting as antithesis, and the couplet acting as synthesis.

Sample: https://poets.org/poem/rambling

The Duplex

Jericho Brown introduced the poetry world to the duplex form with the publication of his 2019 collection, The Tradition, which includes several poems written in this style. In an interview, Brown revealed that the form came about when he was trying to “gut the sonnet,” as he wanted to create a “disparate couplet” and move the repeating lines of the sonnet closer together. In the end, the duplex became a sort of hybrid between the sonnet, the ghazal, and the blues.

The poem starts with a couplet, then the second line repeats and the poet adds a new line, following this structure until seven couplets form the poem. The last line of the poem repeats the first, with an increased or changed resonance that the rest of the poem’s context provides. (from https://bit.ly/3erboFr)

Sample: https://www.aprweb.org/poems/duplex-i-begin-with-love


Created by Charles Bernstein and unearthed by me. 😀 There are twelve stanzas. The first line of each stanza is five syllables, the second line has three syllables, and the third line has four syllables: a Pythagorean triple 52=32+42. Each stanza has 12 syllables, so there should be 144 syllables or 122 syllables. That’s the promise, but the promise is broken. Because of the broken promise, the poem actually has 145 syllables. There is also no punctuation and there is a line between each stanza. In addition, there are no articles (“a,” “an,” and “the”) or superfluous adjectives or adverbs.

For more on the form and for a sample poem, see: https://wp.me/pS37c-1kG


1 Response to “Four New Poetic Forms”

  1. 1 Wanda Schubmehl
    October 12, 2022 at 9:17 pm

    I love these, although I am not sure I could hold all that in my mind long enough to make a poem. But the sample poems are breathtaking! I feel like:yes, that’s poetry!

    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

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