Give handouts to the City not the town Award the top the most, the bottom least and in the end, the wealth will trickle down So feed the finest to the howling hound The sparrow pecks the droppings of the … Read more
A nineteen-line poetic form consisting of five three-line stanzas (tercets) followed by a final, four-line stanza (quatrain).
The first and third lines of the first stanza rhyme with each other and are repeated throughout the poem (although they can be varied a little): the first line of the first stanza is the last line of the second and fourth stanzas, and the third line of the first stanza is the last line of the third and fifth stanzas. The two lines then form the last couplet of the final stanza.
The first and last lines of all the stanzaa rhyme with each other, and the second lines of all stanzas also rhyme with each other.
However hard anyone tries to make it sound simple, it is always a lot clearer to understand what a villanelle is by looking at one rather than looking at a description of what one is!
The most famous villanelle is probably Do Not Go Gently Into That Good Night by Dylan Thomas.
Autumn falls and storm clouds brew The post each day brings season’s chill The queue moves on a step or two The last demand is overdue It stands unopened on the sill As autumn falls and storm clouds brew They … Read more
– a villanelle about this. Kids needed somewhere safe to swim so locals raised funds for a pool, got sponsor forms and filled them in Again they shook donation tins to keep aquatics at the school, to keep the children … Read more
The courts prejudge and penalise, applying law, not playing fair, convicting of ‘joint enterprise’ Two words that catch and criminalise the skin you’re in, the clothes you wear, they prejudge and they penalise You’re guilty in the system’s eyes and … Read more
Accept our rule and stop this hue and cry Some loved ones have to go before their time It’s just the weak and sick and old who’ll die We have a theory here to justify Our nudging unit thinks it’s … Read more
A villanelle about the deaths of workers at the Crossrail Bond Street site. Don’t go down to level five A killer’s prowling in the deep Stay away and stay alive Worker bees construct a hive of industry, where toxins seep … Read more
Work hard, be conscientious, be afraid Your life won’t be worth living if you fail The only thing that matters is your grade Feel guilty for each error you have made Learn quotes by rote and don’t stop to exhale … Read more
The Pfizer guys are haggling with the NICE And while they talk, the cancer spreads again You’ll get your pills when they’ve agreed a price You’ll get your answer when they’ve rolled their dice And dealt your hand out in … Read more
The warming of oceans by greenhouse gases emitted by human activity has caused large-scale death of coral reefs. A hat tip to Dylan Thomas’ ‘Do Not Go Gentle Into That Dark Night’, as I nicked his villanelle refrain. Do not … Read more
A villanelle about the Aberfan coal mining disaster, in which 144 people, including 116 school children, died when a coal mining waste tip collapsed. There was a lot of anger at the National Coal Board for its neglect of safety, … Read more