Home > Poem, Poetry, Villanelle > Old Bones Give Way – a Villanelle

Old Bones Give Way – a Villanelle

One traditional form of poetry that can be fun to write, is technically easy compared to the most challenging forms, and often surprises the poet with its twists and discoveries, is the villanelle.

Villanelles have been around for at least three hundred years. .

My poem has three beats to a line (ta-DUM, ta-DUM, ta-DUM), not so traditional five(ta-DUM, ta-DUM, ta-DUM, ta-DUM, ta-DUM). But it is all good because this is a flexible poetic form and my first Villanelle poem.

When my old bones give way
Divine spirit flies high;
Sweet rhythm gone today.
On emerald grass I lay
My children then will cry;
When my old bones give way.
Illusion, eyes astray
Into the void, good-bye:
Sweet rhythm gone today.
So ominous they say;
Celestial am I?
When my old bones give way.
A pantomime’s ballet
Off balcony to fly;
Sweet rhythm gone today.
It jostles your mind – stay
Observe my ghost awhile;
When my old bones give way
Sweet rhythm gone today.
-TheMsLvh  © 2011

  1. July 18, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    A nice one to start.

  2. July 18, 2011 at 1:15 pm

    This is terrific – a villanelle is tricky to write – I tried – not sure how well I did – but I love this. You are such an amazing poet. :) Love coming here – it is always a surprise and delight.

    • July 18, 2011 at 1:33 pm

      Jo, it is comments like this that keep me going. Love ya!

  3. July 18, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    I’m not good meters, but I’m always glad when someone else is and to me this rhymed well. Not that I care all that much about rhymes (sorry!), I care more for the images it creates in my mind… And this created plenty! *smile* Thank you for giving me more inspiration!

    • July 18, 2011 at 2:42 pm

      Thanks for your comment and anytime CC!

  4. July 18, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    a pleasure to read

  5. July 18, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    Your first wordle and your first villanelle. Wow! You did well with both. And if you like giving yourself that sort of challenge you’ll be back :)


    • July 18, 2011 at 2:41 pm

      Thoguth I would try something different. Loved the challange. Thank you for your comment

  6. July 18, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    Love this piece, so well shared. Though there is structure the words float as does the brushstrokes across the image. Light yet dark, depth beyond the first glance. Beautiful!

    • July 18, 2011 at 2:41 pm

      Thank you so very much! Loved your insight

  7. July 18, 2011 at 5:46 pm

    love this one…magical and beautiful.


  8. July 19, 2011 at 7:38 am

    Excellent first wordle and villanelle – welcome to the wordle gang! :)

  9. July 19, 2011 at 7:41 am

    I so admire poets who can write traditional forms. You do the villanelle very nicely.

  10. July 19, 2011 at 8:10 am

    I know nothing about the finer points of poetry, but I appreciate the explanation of the piece, and it is excellent when compared to your intent. The story is wonderful as well, and I really enjoyed the poem over all.

    • July 19, 2011 at 8:18 am

      I am glad you appreciated the explaination of this type of poetry. Thank you for taking the time to read.

  11. July 19, 2011 at 8:43 am

    beautifully structured , imagined and presented with the finest poetic effects, balanced in the rhyme and rhythm and a wonderful concept of Life’s ultimate purpose. A pleasure to read.

    • July 19, 2011 at 8:48 am

      Your comment is wonderful, Thank you

    • July 20, 2011 at 8:23 am

      Thank you anjum wasim dar for your comment. I would love to see your writing. Do you have a home on the internet? Thanks!

  12. July 19, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    Very nice!
    You have emboldened me! I have published my attempt at a villanelle.

    • July 19, 2011 at 9:28 pm

      I just read it and thought you did a great job!

  13. July 19, 2011 at 10:47 pm

    Only your first Wordle and you came up with this? Keep ’em coming. I love your spiritual openness and the flow of this villanelle. Also, the repeated line, ‘When my old bones give way,’ is very effective, resonant. Loved this. Welcome to the wonderful world of wordling, thanks to Brenda! Peace, Amy Barlow Liberatore

    • July 20, 2011 at 7:55 am

      Thank you so much for your welcoming comments.

  14. July 20, 2011 at 5:38 am

    Glad to have you at The Whirl. Your villanelle echoes it’s ideas beautifully. Welcome.

  15. Leona
    July 20, 2011 at 5:40 am

    Hi Lisa-
    That poem was so beautiful. And the picture you choose to go with it is amazing! They really do go together. When my bones give way, I want to stay awhile and watch over my girl. Just for awhile, then go to heaven and watch from above. I promise to be a good angel!! Have a great day my friend!

  16. July 20, 2011 at 8:31 am

    Nice and rhythmic poem .btw..I too love villanelle :)

    • July 20, 2011 at 8:43 am

      Thank you Umaa for your lovely comment. This was a challange from a blog spot to write a villanelle. I am going to explore this style even more now.

  17. July 21, 2011 at 10:58 am

    Wow this is really beautiful, I love the repetition.

  18. July 22, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    Oh, wonderfully done! You used the wordle words so well I stopped noticing them. :) And villanelles are indeed difficult – I think yours works very well!

  19. July 23, 2011 at 7:38 am

    I didn’t realize it had been several days since I’ve visited. Great work on the wordle, they are fun and I hope you keep working with them, but to do it in a Villanelle in trimeter? Wow.

    Well, hang in here, we rhyming poets who use meter are getting rare.

  20. August 24, 2011 at 7:19 am

    creative, well done.


  21. August 24, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    this is perfect and beautiful.


  22. August 25, 2011 at 10:49 am

    your words are haunting and lovely.

    happy poetry picnic.


  23. hobgoblin2011
    October 11, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    I love the Villanelle, and your’s is wonderful. Thanks for the read

  24. October 11, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    i like the core of the poem, that as my bones creak and get older, the rhythm goes, wonder if you mean dancing?

  25. October 11, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    Ah, the villanelle! I find it a quite challenging form myself, but you’ve written it beautifully. The message and the image sing a welcome song to this old lady!

  26. October 11, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    very nice…your reflection on passing is rather beautiful…what comes on the other side, i will know when my old bones give way…nice vallanelle

  27. October 11, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    Great write, I want to keep my young bones, those old bones are scary..haha

  28. October 11, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    This is beautiful!!!!!!!

  29. the word bar
    October 11, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    Much enjoyed the nice flow of this.. and a great message as well. for someone like me that knows zero about writing forms, this was a real treat!!

  30. October 12, 2011 at 1:53 am

    I hope YOUR ‘old bones’ are healed and that we can have you back writing more lovely poetry for us SOON!!!! *big hugs*

  31. October 12, 2011 at 4:22 am

    The rhyme and meter are used so tastefully for emphasis–just the way it’s supposed to work. It takes great pains to work so “effortlessly” with the form. A very enjoyable read.

  32. kez
    October 12, 2011 at 7:10 am

    beautiful and great rhythm thanks for sharing x

  33. hedgewitch
    October 12, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    Some nice twists and turns in one of my personal form favorites–you executed it well. And so glad to hear you’re getting out of the cast–great job on that healing stuff. ;_)

  34. October 12, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    how amazing this style it is very difficult to write and I could not of done this you did an excellent job love it so much

  35. October 12, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    You make it look so easy! Truly spectactular! Sorry it took me so long to get here… I’m a slow reader…… I know, I know, you are a slow typer right now too! Great job on this…. And I am not any kind of expert on forms, (I run from them at fast paces) but I don’t think meter is important to the Villanelle…… I might be wrong about that though…. but I think the three foot meter is just as acceptable as the more popular iambic…..

  36. October 15, 2011 at 2:11 am



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