Josie - July 2008

By Josie Whitehead

Web Index Poems to Hear Metre, Rhyme and Literacy Alliteration, Assonance etc Anapaests and Dactyls Potentially Poetical 2 Potentially Poetical 3



You listened, I hope, to Molly the Meerkat several times.  I hope you not only liked the story, but that you have learned quite a bit about Meerkats.  Now your teacher can read the poem to you but stop at the rhyming words.  You should be able to write these now.  I've seen many poems where poets have been careless with their rhyming words and metre, but I do spend a lot of time trying to get mine perfect.  It is worth it.  I hope you do too.


Molly the Meerkat is anapestic poem, but look at how many anapests there are in each verse  The following is written in anapaestic TETrameter, ie four anapaests on each line with aabb rhyming.


On a BRIGHT sunny MORN, in the MIDdle of MAY, - - - - - -     (FOUR)

When the SUN'S rays shone BRIGHTly upON this hot DAY, - - -   (FOUR)

     A small MEERkat called MOLLy gazed OVer the PLAIN, - - - -   (FOUR)

     She looked LEFT, and then RIGHT and then LEFT once aGAIN.  (FOUR again)


Get your teacher to read this poem to you right through and clap on the heavy beats (feet) on each line.  


If you count, you'll see that there are four steady beats per line and you'll know what we call these now.  With four steady beats per line, anapaestic tetrameter rhymes on the first and second line, and on the third and fourth line.  We call this aabb rhyming.  Now you try writing some anapaestic lines.  I'll get you started:


In the MIDdle of APril a CUCKoo reTURNED

When the SUN shines quite BRIGHTly high UP in the SKY

When my MOTHer and FATHer come HOME from their WORK

I love BLACKberries, CHERRies and APricots TOO.

Mr (Mis ter) JOHNson is COMing to LOOK at my WORK.

When I CRY I am TOLD that my FACE turns quite RED.


ANAPAESTIC  HEPTAMETER:  Of course you can use the anapaestic metre with heptameter also, ie 7 anapaests spread over 2 lines:  See:  PUFFINS


Now continue writing your sentences.  The strong BEATS (feet) must be in the natural place where we place emphasis on the sounds naturally in the English language, of course.  You couldn't have "brightLY" or "strawBERRIES".  We don't speak like this.  Now what you are about to do is what all good poets do every day.  It's like practising your music, your football, or anything which requires practice.  It is this that makes you into a good poet as against being a poor one for certain.



An Autumn Visit Come Zoom on My Broom Queen of the Night Elves and the Shoemaker See Figurative and Literal Language A Special Christmas Treat