Sometimes (Unsweetened) – Englyn unodi union


Sometimes (Unsweetened)

I sometimes understand that we’ll all die,
without last try-again.
No refill of siphoned sand,
do-over (do what we can).

And that I too, and all I love, will die.
And my cry does not call
like the mourning dove, a fall/
rise, but has no interval.

an Englyn unodi union


Here’s my attempt at an Englyn unodi union (whatever that is!), a Welsh form, for dVerse Poets Pub. Form for All.  For more info, check out the wonderful article by Sue Judd and Gay Reiser Cannon at dVerse.  All I can say is that it’s a syllabic form with a slightly odd rhyme scheme that probably works better in Welsh or in someone else’s hands. 

But since my two-stanza version has (with the title and little identifying material at the end, exactly 55 words, please also tell it to the G-Man.)

P.S. The photo is of the old Domino Sugar Factory in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  

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23 Comments on “Sometimes (Unsweetened) – Englyn unodi union”

  1. nephiriel Says:

    “No refill of siphoned sand”

    how much i love this line!
    beautifully sad, great read.

  2. brian miller Says:

    ha you got it in 55 as well…nice…we all will die, truth, but it def does not make it any easier….there is a delicate balance in living like it could be your last, and letting that truth color your day as well…

  3. G-Man Says:

    Your little masterpiece gave me chills.
    What a fantastic bit of writing skill.
    I loved your lamenting 55
    Thanks for playing, thanks always for your wonderful support, and have a Kick Ass Week-End

  4. hedgewitch Says:

    I really love the Welsh forms for the things they make us discover about our normally quite prosaic language–here by syllable emphasis(I guess that would be meter in its normal incarnation) line breaks, internal line rhyme and brevity/distillation, it allows you to produce a musical, almost hypnotic vibe that carries such a melancholy and profound freight so lightly. Really fine job with this, k. The second stanza is up there with some of the best stuff on this topic I’ve ever read.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Thanks so much. I’ve not worked with celtic forms much and find the short lines a bit hard = the whole thing a bit like an interlocking puzzle but kind of interesting in that way too. By the second stanza, I got a bit over the puzzle feeling so it was able to flow a bit more. Thanks again for all your inspiration. k.

  5. Kim Nelson Says:

    Heavy topic for a brief double Englyn, and you full it off. I like the way the form forces brevity and concision.

  6. I thought this was brilliant; an excellent use of the form. To my novice understanding of the form – perfectly executed. It seems you shifted stress and subtly worked in rhymes in their correct places.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Thanks much, Gay. It was an interesting challenge – I found the sound very hard actually, as I’m used to a longer line, but it was great to force myself to curtail. Thanks for the great article. k.

  7. Sabio Lantz Says:

    Am I mistaken, but the first two lines should be:
    _ _ _ _ _ a _ _ _ b
    _ _ b _ _ a

    So your line 1:
    a= stand
    b = die

    but line 2:
    b = last
    a = again

    Was that intentional?
    I like the realism of your poem — and love the mourning dove.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Hi sabio, I am on iPhone so may get this wrong as dont have poem in front of me but the rhymes in the second line are try (with die) and again (with understand). I pronounce “again” in the Americanized way which sounds like gan rather than gain.

      I appreciate that someone with a more British style accent would probably read the word differently but I sort of like the use of slant rhyme so that doesn’t bother me. K.

  8. Nice lament. I often use these celtic forms although Irish rather than Welsh. The rhyme scheme is often consonance but the rhythm is maintained with the pattern of syllabic endings and numbers as well as the placement of consonance ends echoed in the line.W.B. Yeats draw on these traditions in his poetry. i find the method can lead to a rich textured language . Like haikus, you can keep to strict Japanese as English or look for it’s core and rebreath it in our language.

  9. Mary Says:

    I often find my own poetry dealing with the inevitability of death; so your words resonated with me. We can’t avoid the subject, and I am always happy to find another poet who CLEARLY addresses it.

  10. I love your last stanza–does this form have stanzas??

  11. shakira Says:

    I like the fact that you created a masterpiece unknowingly. Great stuff. Yes, we all will die and I do not ever wonder more than know that I will live each day to the fullest. Mine is here

  12. kkkkaty Says:

    I am saving this one…it’s wonderful and smart…am still considering the last line..”but .has no interval”;)

  13. […] ManicDDaily « Sometimes (Unsweetened) – Englyn unodi union […]

  14. So true, but why dwell on the inevitable? I love the line..”No refill of siphoned sand”

    Used to think there’d be a lot of do-overs….

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Good question. You’re right. But I think the inevitable kind of dwells in us – in me anyway! I’ve unfortunately had several close friends and family members die during the last few years – not so many but enough – and the question comes up often when I consider how I am leading (or not leading) my life, and how I’ve delayed important matters. Other people probably handle these things better. k.

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