Hir a Thoddaid: Poetic Form

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Last week, we looked at ottava rima. This week, let's tackle hir a thoddaid.

Hir a Thoddaid Poems

Some of you may have already guessed, but the hir a thoddaid is a Welsh form. They've got the coolest names, right?

And this form is like other Welsh forms in regards to a slight variation in line length and some complexity in the rhyme scheme. Here's the structure of this six-line form (with the letters acting as syllables and the a's and b's signifying rhymes:

1-xxxxxxxxa
2-xxxxxxxxa
3-xxxxxxxxa
4-xxxxxxxxa
5-xxxxxxxbxx
6-xxbxxxxxa

So line 5 is 10 syllables in length; the other 5 lines are 9 syllables. Also, the "b" rhyme is somewhere near the end of line 5 and somewhere in the first half of line 6--so those rhymes could move back and forth to suit your needs.

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Here’s my attempt at a Hir a Thoddaid:

Ace, by Robert Lee Brewer

This is the year I really need space
to figure myself out and save face
from those who are always on my case
about how I don't know how to grace
a room without dominating the scene
while demonstrating my sense of place.

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Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.

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