Whittled Words – Rime Couee 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:





The Rime Couee is a French poetic form that uses six-line stanzas with a 3-part rhyme scheme and variable line lengths. It is a tail-rhymed verse form of 12th century Provencal troubadours. Though it originated in France, it is thought to be the predecessor of the more popular Scot form, the Burns Stanza.

Here are the guidelines:

  • Six-line stanzas.
  • Eight syllables in lines one, two, four, and five.
  • Six syllables in the third and sixth lines.
  • Rhyme scheme of AABCCB.

The poem can be a single stanza or run for several. In the examples below, you will see variations of line length but a consistent structure of two longer lines followed by a shorter line. As with any art, this falls well within artistic license.


Examples of Rime Couee Poems:




 By Lawrencealot



When Old Man Winter struts his stuff
to show that he is good enough
he paints in white.
Unlike the art-work done by Spring
where colors touch most everything
pastel or bright.

His canvass can be anything
a bridge a tree, an old coil spring
that’s left outside.
St. Joseph lighthouse shown above
received full measure of his love.
I’m satisfied.



By John Berryman

My framework is broken, I am coming to an end,
God send it soon. When I had most to say
my tongue clung to the roof
I mean of my mouth. It is my Lady’s birthday
which must be honored, and has been. God send
it soon.

I now must speak to my disciples, west
and east. I say to you, Do not delay
I say, expectation is vain.
I say again, It is my Lady’s birthday
which must be honoured. Bring her to the test
at once.

I say again, It is my Lady’s birthday
which must be honoured, for her high black hair
but not for that alone:
for every word she utters everywhere
shows her good soul, as true as a healed bone,—
being part of what I meant to say.



 By Brad Osborne



Sun has worn away and night calls

I sit alone within these walls

Here the remains all gray

And rest these oh so weary eyes

Hopeful to open with sunrise

If I but have my way

For tho’ this day was good to live

I think that I have more to give

More I was meant to say

There is something left inside me

That may still offer some beauty

I just need one more day


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 Rime Couee poem. Thanks for reading!


15 Responses to “Whittled Words – Rime Couee Poem”
  1. beth says:

    I like the six line set up and yes, at least one more day

  2. A most interesting form of poetry, one that can easily lead towards some very insightful writing. Great example you provided, all of them. Cheers my friend.

  3. mistermuse says:

    I like the poem all gray you tell
    And I like the others, as well
    But there’s one thing makes me curse
    Though I have but myself to blame
    And that’s the time it takes to write this verse
    When I could be resting my brain

  4. Jim Borden says:

    yes, one more day, one day at a time…

  5. This is my Anthem!

  6. jonicaggiano says:

    I really liked the first one and yours of course. Yours as well as the first one read beautifully smooth and I loved the musicality of the form.

    This was so lovely Brad:

    “For tho’ this day was good to live

    I think that I have more to give

    More I was meant to say

    There is something left inside me

    That may still offer some beauty

    I just need one more day”

    Sending you big hugs, blessings and a beautiful woman who has lost her way on the road. You offer her tea and read her a poem and start a lovely fire and she never leaves. Love ❤️ Jonikins

    • Brad Osborne says:

      Thank you, Jonikins! Between the syllabic meter and rhyme scheme, you are left with something that usually reads well. I keep an eye out for lost women!

      • jonicaggiano says:

        I bet you do my friend. Maybe a beacon on the house would help. My prayers for you are being heard. We never know the answer but if it is God’s will he is listen and he will bring you someone in his time. Have an amazing week. Love Jonikins ❤️🤗🦋

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