POETS AS INVENTORS
Jeanne Streible of Springfield Missouri Wins 2006 Best New Poetic Form Award for her invention, the Story Quatrain





PARISIAN PASSIONS

I feel a need to change my fate, perhaps to find a brand new mate.
Wade works too much; no time to sate my itchy, needy restless state.
We're just engaged, it's not too late! Does everyone exaggerate
this romance stuff? Why hesitate? Perhaps I should investigate!

The French are sexy, fancy-free, so here I am in gay Paree.
I've found a group of folks like me; this Senior Center rocks with glee!
The music sounds, my body sways. My heart then pounds, I'm in a daze.
A handsome hunk toward me sashays, demands a dance, green eyes ablaze.

We dance, we kiss, our hips gyrate. Wow! How this man can undulate!
Our growing passion just won’t wait; he finds a room, our lust to sate.
Jacques says, "I love your female charms," I draw him to my waiting arms.
My shrieks of joy sound the alarms; too soon the room fills with Gendarmes.

In shock, we glare, our bodies bare, his wooden leg upon the chair.
Our dentures fly into the air; I catch his toupee of dark hair.
I bid them, "Leave us to get dressed," but they stand staring at my breast,
(which lies nearby atop a chest), "Request denied," they rudely jest.

Upon the nightstand are displayed my pixie wig and hearing aid.
And, falling, Jacques' glass eye of jade rolls out amid a loud tirade.
I turn to Jacques for Gallic aid, dismayed to see his valor frayed,
and -- through his cliched masquerade-- his jellied spine of marmalade.

The Gendarmes also look afraid, for charging through their small brigade
screams one large Madame, on crusade: my lover's wife, the chambermaid!
“Die, you faithless renegade!” She wields his leg like a sword blade.
I flee this shameful escapade, fly home and wed my dear, sweet Wade.

Jeanne Streible, Springfield, Missouri
May, 2006
INVENT-A-POEM

"STORY QUATRAIN"


INVENTOR: JEANNE STREIBLE, Springfield, Missouri
NAME OF FORM: "Story Quatrain"
RULES: "Story Quatrain" is a 384-syllable, 24-line short story or mini 3-Act play that has all elements of prose fiction, but is written in Iambic Double Tet.

"Double Tet" means one line of lambic Tetrameter (four 2-syllable feet per line) is combined with another line, so each line is eight 2-syllable feet per line; thus, a line has 16 syllables. The 8th syllable is an internal rhyme that rhymes with the 16th syllable at the end of the line. Other internal rhymes are allowed as poet's choice. The Story Quatrain has six stanzas of four lines each. Each stanza plays a specific role, and has its own rhyme scheme.

By following the formula, the poet can create a perfectly plotted story in iambic narrative that fits onto one page of a manuscript sheet or book. This formula adapts to every genre, from love to sci-fi and even mystery stories.

FORMULA: Four 16-syllable lines per stanza

ACT I:

Stanza 1: (Introduces main character and his/her problem) Rhyme Scheme: Lines 1-4: A-A-A-A

Act II:

Stanzas 2-through 5: (Body of story or play. Dramatic Conflict) Rhyme Scheme:
Stanza 2, lines 5 & 6: B-B: lines 7 & 8: C-C:
Stanza 3, lines 9 & 10: D-D; lines 11 & 12: E-E
Stanza 4, lines 13 & 14: F-F; lines 15 & 16: G-G
Stanza 5, lines 17 & 18: H-H; lines 19 & 20: I-I (or optional*)

Act III:

Stanza 6, (Resolution of characters & conflict)
Rhyme Scheme: lines 21-24: J-J-J-J

*In her example, Jeanne uses H-H-H-H, making Stanza 6 I-I-I-I.