Whittled Words – Huitain 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:





If you know me, you know I love the French poetic forms. The huitain is actually a derivative of the French ballade. In fact, it is a complete 8-line poem composed of one ballade stanza. The huitain was popular in France in the 15th and early 16th centuries with such poets as François Villon and Clément Marot.

Here are the guidelines for the Huitain:

8-line stanza

ababbcbc rhyme scheme

Usually, 8 to 10 syllables per line

Note: You may remember me previously covering the dizain, which is a 10-line poem composed of a ballade supreme stanza. (If not, check it out here.)


Examples of Huitain Poems:



By Robert Lee Brewer

Then, once upon a time, I spied
a dragon hover over trees
and thought perhaps that I should hide
before the beast also spied me,
but my fear would not let me see
that for me it had no real care
while it used its wings to be free
of the water, the earth, and air.



By Chris Embreck


Beauty captivates the senses
an English rose, a Lady fair
Against such, a heart’s defenseless
to fill the eyes, or smell the air
A poet’s pen will oft compare
the beauty of the sky at dawn
With passing time is made aware
that all too soon, the beauty’s gone.



By Lancealot

She stands alone, wind in her hair,

upon the cliff, above the sea;

for hours she’s done naught but stare,

I wonder, is she even free?

Her prison is not one you see

it has no bars, nor doors that seal,

it’s made of all her mind’s debris

and all the things she used to feel.



By Brad Osborne


Both eyes are wide open to let in light

Peering long into the void of my years

But this long look holds very little sight

Just the replaying of petulant fears

And as the end creeps in so very near

I search the visions for the truly rare

Held by eyes refracted in helpless tears

I am frozen in the icy long stare


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 Huitain poem. Thanks for reading!


9 Responses to “Whittled Words – Huitain Poem”
  1. beth says:

    that long icy stare – intense

  2. kristianw84 says:

    I enjoyed all the poems you shared! Out of all of them, yours is the most relatable. That last line is golden!

  3. Bridgette says:

    Another beautiful heartfelt poem.

  4. Jim Borden says:

    I like this style, hopefully that icy stare will soon see a wonderful vision of the future. and nice to see Mr Brewer with a poem!

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