Poetry challenge#37: Red boat

This week, I’m introducing the rondelet, a form I’ve just discovered. It’s short and has no rhyme pattern, which should please some people. There is also a refrain, which pleases me. It’s not as easy as it looks though, to get something satisfying out of it, so be warned. Operating instructions are here.

Oops. Forgot to add the bit about posting the link to your poem in the comments below. A pingback is best if you can get it to work. Always best to check I’ve got it.

No apologies for choosing an Odilon Redon painting for the image this week. I love his work and find it full of inspiration. Only one prompt word this time since the poem is very short. My poem follows.



My love and I,

In a red barque with yellow sail.

My love and I,

Crossing oceans, sunset headed,

Follow a dream or just a gull.

Hand in hand, heart to heart we glide,

My love and I.


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.

53 thoughts on “Poetry challenge#37: Red boat”

  1. Thank you for another lovely prompt. I hope things are back to normal, or as normal as you want them to be! I guess your tall ship friend will be thrilled – really looking forward to seeing what he makes of this. I’ve gone a bit bonkers and written two 🙂 – they are very short, though, so that’s my excuse.



    When I read your poem first, I read “sunset headed” as meaning head full of sunset. When I read it the second time I read it as heading towards the sunset. It works well both ways for me, but I’m wondering which you intended, or maybe you intended some ambiguity?

    1. I hadn’t noticed the ambiguity at all! I’m not that clever. I meant headed towards the sunset, but now you point it out, I like the other interpretation too so I’m going to claim the credit 🙂

      1. Confession: I sort of can’t stop writing rondelets now. They’re awesome=D

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  4. Well, that was an entertaining foray… and I chose that word because holy smoke that was a battle to get it… and I’m still not quite sure I got it (just checked, my pingback hasn’t shown up, so… I’m adding mine manually).

    The Winds Have Blown…

      1. Maybe I’m just a bit jumpy when it comes to pingbacks. Like, if they don’t show up immediately, I think they don’t work. /shrug 😀

  5. Thank you for the prompt Jane. I enjoyed the rondelet…it has a pleasing simplicity yet it’s challenging (as you ‘warned’)

    1. And I didn’t know the half of it! I shouldn’t be allowed to run these things if I can’t follow the rules myself. I honestly hadn’t picked up that there was a rhyme to this form. Boo boo recitifed, and yes, it does make it even more tricky 🙂

      1. Yet you have done some fine ones without the rhyming scheme..the rhythm and refrain may be enough structure for the form.

      2. I tend to think that the rhythm is often more important than the rhyme. This form is tricky to get a rhythm going because the lines are different lengths. Maybe that’s the challenge?

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