Write a Villanelle

A villanelle is formal. A villanelle is strict. You may think that it is villainy to be forced to write a villanelle. You may have never heard of a villanelle before! This form of poetry evolved in the late 1800s in appreciation of a French poem written during the Renaissance.

A villanelle is a nineteen-line poem. It includes repeated lines and a strict rhyme scheme. There are only two rhymes represented in the entire poem. There are six stanzas in a villanelle. The first five stanzas have three lines apiece. The final stanza is a quatrain of four lines.

Here is an example of a villanelle:

"The House on the Hill"

By Edwin Arlington Robinson (1869-1935)

They are all gone away,

The House is shut and still,

There is nothing more to say.

Through broken walls and gray

The wind blows bleak and shrill:

They are all gone away.

Nor is there one today,

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