villanelle. so i had not heard of this term until about three hours ago, and even now i am a bit baffled by it. compared to many forms of poetry, which are quite open, the villanelle is heavily structured. now, this is a double edged sword as it makes writing it a much narrower corridor than some forms, but it is also quite difficult to fill with interesting subject matter, given that each stanza is only three lines, and the poem is very repetitive.

this is very much inspired by requiem for a dream, and the idea of emptiness and addiction that i am currently planning a novel around.


The Habit

You can offer me relief
silicon, shining curves of satisfaction
and come Sabbath Sunday, I shall have no belief

Something beautiful, something I can sink into; with teeth
my hand that feeds, my hazy vision
you can offer me relief.

Clutching at you in the gale, my leaf,
troublesome mistress, my love, my addiction
and come Sabbath Sunday, I shall have no belief.

Looking back on life, you’re a theme, a motif
a breeze in the morning, destructive in the evening
you can offer me relief

My empty wallet, your problematique,
your kiss on my arm, your sweet injection
and come Sabbath Sunday, I shall have no belief

This rich tapestry, this sordid boutique,
this terrible hole, this natural affliction,
you can offer me relief
and come Sabbath Sunday, I shall have no belief.


as always, this is an early draft. please criticise the hell out of it. it also might change as i slowly edit it before submission on tuesday. thanks !


3 thoughts on “villanelle

  1. I like the repetition, it refreshing, though I bet it was a bugger to write – that’s a comfort zone issue. Any reason for not ending the poem on ‘You can offer me relief’? And ‘your problematique’ – not ‘you’re’? I’m not French. So tell me I’m wrong! Enjoyed it!

  2. well it was and it wasn’t…once you have written two lines, you’re set because they get repeated so often, the poem sort of forms itself…it’s going to be edited before submission though.

    and nope, ‘problematique’ is a french word meaning ‘the art of forming a problem’, so it’s just your’.

    ps i liked your post today, post more often !

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