Last week, we looked at the Italian octave. This week, we look at the Sicilian octave. Most of the rules are similar with slight variations in rhyme scheme and the possibility of an extra syllable (for those who are extra-syllable inclined).
Here are the guidelines:
- Eight-line poem or stanza
- Iambic meter (of 10 or 11 syllables per line)
- Rhyme scheme: abababab
As with the Italian octave, there are no restrictions on subject matter for this form.
Play with poetic forms!
Poetic forms are fun poetic games, and this digital guide collects more than 100 poetic forms, including more established poetic forms (like sestinas and sonnets) and newer invented forms (like golden shovels and fibs).
Here’s my attempt at an Sicilian Octave:
Alpha, by Robert Lee Brewer
It was just a morning in 2020
that somehow felt the same as any other,
and I woke early as if someone sent me
a soft alarm from my sister or brother.
Like every other day, the news had plenty
of things to say that might trouble my mother
and may have troubled myself without twenty
reasons to yawn and find not one to bother.