NaPoWriMo #7 – Tritina

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! It’s Day 7 of NaPoWriMo, and the prompt was another iffy one for me – but the whole idea is just to write, so some of these I will revise and keep around for other uses, and others are just practice. This one, appears to be one of those practice runs. And, in my defense, I was out reading poetry tonight at a reading for National Poetry Month – so I feel lucky to have squeezed this prompt in at all – after teaching too. The prompt today is a Tritina, which is akin to a Sestina…and other such form poems as the Pantoum (my favorite) and the Villanelle. The prompt in its entirety follows my poem, “Purple Tritina:”

Purple Tritina

I’ve always been attracted to purple.
The color alone could be considered high art,
it is soothing to the eye, yet vibrant to see.

Often, others don’t embrace the hues I see,
the many reigning values in the color purple,
where even my words leap in its literary art,

inked every day as I indulge in this art,
not red blood dreaded pages do I like to see
it kills the creativity unlike my superior purple:

Creativity rules in purple, it’s an art – can’t you see?

The Day 7 prompt from Napowrimo:

Write a tritina. The tritina is a shorter cousin to the sestina, involving three, three-line stanzas, and a final concluding line. Three “end words” are used to conclude the lines of each stanza, in a set pattern of ABC, CAB, BCA, and all three end words appear together in the final line.

Confused? No problem — here’s an example!

Tritina for Susannah

The water off these rocks is green and cold.
The sandless coast takes the tide in its mouth,
as a wolf brings down a deer or lifts its child.

I walked this bay before you were my child.
Your fingers stinging brightly in the cold,
I take each one and warm it in my mouth.

Though I’ve known this shore for years, my mouth
holds no charms of use to you, my child.
You will have to learn the words to ward off cold

and know them cold, child, in your open mouth.

–David Yezzi

The form is a little complicated, but fun (and less complicated than a sestina, for sure!)

If you get something you’d like to share, post it below in comments!

Keep writing,



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