Poetry challenge #18: Echo verse

I’m going to try this one out on you despite being unsure myself what I think of it. I only read about it yesterday evening and muddled a poem out to see if I could do it. I’m not certain the result is exactly what was intended, but I’m okay with that.

Echo verse goes back centuries but it has a very modern feel about it. The concept is simple—after each line there is an echo, of the last syllable (or two), or a word that rhymes. In the instructions it doesn’t say what the poem has to be about, line length, or whether there has to be any other kind of rhyme pattern. It’s up to you. Here’s an explanation of how it works.


Give it a try and tell me what you think of this form. You have a week to ponder and post your link in the comments. I’ll be very interested to see what you produce.

Here’s what I came up with. I chose to make the echo a rhyme (I couldn’t see how the echo of the same word was supposed to convey a different meaning, but maybe that’s just my personal blind spot) that leads into the next line.


The moon is tangled in midnight trees,


Waves of darkness fill the starry sky,


I wait at my lonely window in the dark,


While night birds call, mice cower in the hedge,


Leaves rustle as the wind pours from the sea,


Will you be back before the stars are gone?


But breaking is the light upon the bay,



Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

50 thoughts on “Poetry challenge #18: Echo verse”

    1. It’s the way I went when I first tried it out. Seems natural to have the echo actually lead somewhere. Then I decided that the main lines didn’t make sense without the echo word, so I rewrote trying to make sure the poem made sense without the echo. I like your version. There’s no rule that says you have to write it one way or another.

  1. Not as easy as it seems, Jane. Your comment about sounding like you’re talking to one of those infuriating people who repeat everything you say is spot on. I couldn’t get mine to make sense without the echo words, but I’m sharing it anyway!

    Grandmother’s Comfort

    In a pot on the kitchen windowsill
    Basking in the weak spring rays
    Of brightness lie ahead
    Like the table cloth where Grandmother’s sitting
    Unravelled jumpers into a patchwork blanket
    At the end of life’s storm


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s