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Poetry
Write a Triolet



Write a Triolet
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 9 to 12
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.87

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    tetrameter, loving-kindness, triolet, anew, scheme, compose, trio, origin, poet, springboard, seventh, original, poem, thee, fate, final
     content words:    How Great My Grief By Thomas Hardy


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Write a Triolet
By Brenda B. Covert
  

1     There is a form of poem, French in origin, called the triolet. (It can be pronounced TREE-uh-lay or TREE-uh-let.) Do you see the word "trio," meaning three, in triolet? It tells us that something about this poem pertains to the number three. A triolet is an eight-lined poem, but one line repeats itself three times throughout the poem. The first, fourth, and seventh lines of a triolet are identical. When the poet composes that one line, only five lines are left to compose -- make that four lines! In a triolet, the second line is also repeated as the final line of the poem. A poet can write five rhyming lines and create the eight-lined triolet.
 
2     The rhyme scheme of the triolet is ABaAabAB. The capital letters stand for lines that are identical. The use of "a" and "b" tells us that the triolet follows only two rhymes. Take a look at the poem's pattern below.

1st line A
2nd line B
3rd line a
4th line A
5th line a
6th line b
7th line A
8th line B
 
3     We've covered rhyme scheme, but what about meter? Poets often use iambic tetrameter -- eight syllables of four iambic (unstressed/stressed) feet -- in the triolet. Look at the example below to see how the rhyme and rhythm of a triolet flow.

Paragraphs 4 to 6:
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