Whittled Words – Streetbeatina Poem



Welcome to the weekly series, Whittled Words. A series highlighting the innumerable types and styles of poetry to challenge any creative wordsmith. This week’s selection:




A Paul Szlosek Original Form



First, I must thank Paul Szlosek for allowing me to cover this original form in my Whittled Words series. You can find his original post and many other delightful musings on his blog at Paul’s Poetry Playground. His series of quotations from prominent artists and poets was the inspiration for my own weekly series, Tuesday Tidbits. As the creator of the form, I will let Paul’s own words describe this creative and challenging form:

“A little more than a year ago, I published a post on the Streetbeatina, a poetry form I originally created to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Street Beat, an amazing open poetry reading series that was run and hosted by Anne Marie Lucci, a talented local poet, in my hometown of Worcester, Massachusetts for many years.”

“The streetbeatina is an eight-line poem with each line consisting of eight syllables. What makes this form both a challenge to write and uniquely different from other forms is that the first syllable of the first line is repeated as the second syllable in the second line, the third syllable of the third line and so on, the repetition of the sound of the syllable at precise intervals providing the poem with a natural beat and musicality. Although it is completely optional, the poet can emphasize the repeated syllable by either printing it in italics, bold, or a different color.”



Examples of Streetbeatina Poems:



Three Streetbeatinas by Paul Szlosek *



Travel Advisory

By Paul Szlosek



Go unprepared into the world.
Forgo certainty. Pretend to
be cargo bound for distant ports
(perhaps the Gobi Desert? Mars?)
Travel by pogo stick or dreams,
a blank map: your logo. Treat the
unknown as your amigo. Or
ignore this advice, but go. Go!


A Message to a Married Middle-Aged Man
in Middle-Management in Mid-Life Crisis With Artistic Ambitions

By Paul Szlosek



So few chances to start over,
go solo, cover past mistakes
with gesso, paint a new version
of your life (sophisticated,
worldly, yet also real) like a
truly virtuoso artist
living in a loft in Soho.
to replace one that’s just so-so.


Ghost Story

By Paul Szlosek



Local legends say if you go
solo into the deep dark woods
when the lotus blossom first blooms,
and the moon’s low in the night sky,
the girl in yellow will appear,
her lips mouthing “Hello, my love”
while lunar light spills like lotion
on skin translucent as jello.

*(Originally published by Radius: Poetry From the Center to the Edge )



By Brad Osborne


See what light doth hold in embrace

As sea flashes back a twinkling

Night in Seattle remembered

Where our love celestial sparkling

Heart leaps lunacy with such ease

Woven strong is the seamstress thread

Desires blow within sea breeze

And hope makes real the fantasy




I hope you have enjoyed this entry to the series, Whittled Words. I look forward to your comments, and if you dare, maybe share your own Streetbeatina poem. Thanks for reading!




16 Responses to “Whittled Words – Streetbeatina Poem”
  1. Francisco Bravo Cabrera says:

    Your poem is fantastic! Loved it! Actually love that style, it is fun, creative and so different that it is something to strive to accomplish. Great series, great learning from your posts Brad. All the best!

  2. beth says:

    loved your poem, and i love the festive spirit of this poetry form

  3. kristianw84 says:

    I love this style, and your poem, & the Paul’s poems. Haha. I love everything!!

    • Brad Osborne says:

      It was a kick to be able to share Paul’s invention and challenging to write to. Glad you enjoyed mine and thank you for your unwavering support. You are the best! 🥰

  4. Jim Borden says:

    this looks like a fun, but challenging style. As usual. your example is right on target with a wonderful thoughts.

  5. Oh, I love this poem Brad. You are great.
    “See what light doth hold in embrace
    As sea flashes back a twinkling
    Night in Seattle remembered
    Where our love celestial sparkling”
    WOW. Beautiful.
    Have a great weekend.

  6. jonicaggiano says:

    I have never heard of this before and boy it does not look easy although you certainly made it look easy Brad. Nicely done. I see how it has a bit of a beat, very creative. I also enjoyed Paul’s Streetbeatina poems. Great post Brad. Have an amazing weekend my friend. Love Jonikens

  7. jonicaggiano says:

    Oh I did not realize he was part of our community I will definitely follow him his work was very good. Complex writing but very good indeed. You have a blessed Sabbath. Love 💕 Jonikins

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