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Hello. This is Frank Hubeny. The topic today is trimeter. A line in a poem written in trimeter is one that has three similar feet often corresponding to three accented syllables. The number of unaccented syllables is not as important as the number of accented ones.

For example, the following line has three accented syllables.  I wrote them using all capital letters.  There are seven unaccented syllables:

In the HOUSE on my SIDE of the STREET.

This line also has three “feet”: (1) “In the HOUSE”, (2) “on my SIDE” and (3) “of the STREET”.

Here is another example with only two unaccented syllables:


This is the first line of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast”. The following YouTube link contains the lyrics (Source Amy V):

Can you hear the trimeter sound? The lines should be easy to recognize no matter how they are formatted on the video.

Another example Charley of Life in Portofino mentioned to me in a comment is Robert Frost’s “Nothing Gold Can Stay”.

Roslyn Ross provides another example in a recent poem, “Bend”.

In those three examples the poets used trimeter in every line. Sometimes poets will mix trimeter with another meter such as tetrameter, that is four feet per line, or dimeter, two feet per line.

Robert Burns’ poem “My Love is Like a Red Red Rose” is an example of mixing trimeter with tetrameter. The form is also known as a variation of common meter. This YouTube video contains the lyrics sung and played by Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker. (Source glasgow1234)

Can you hear the tetrameter in the first and third lines of each stanza and the trimeter in the second and fourth lines?

Another use of trimeter is in limericks. The first, second and fifth lines of a limerick each have three anapestic feet. The third and fourth lines are in dimeter, or two anapestic feet per line.

A line of trimeter can even be used by itself effectively. In advertising a memorable trimeter line can stand on its own representing a brand. For examples, see: http://www.literarydevices.com/trimeter/

For this challenge, write a poem that uses trimeter lines. All of the lines in the poem do not have to be in trimeter, but enough should be so that one can tell this meter was used on purpose. The poems do not have to rhyme nor must they have any other sound qualities about them.

To participate, write and post your poem. Place the link in the Mister Linky below. The challenge is open for about two days. Drop a comment below if you have questions or just to say hi. (I like chatting in the comment section.) Also read and perhaps even comment on what other people have linked. This is how we get to know each other.