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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Skeltonic Verse

If you feel the absolute urge to rhyme, then Skeltonic Verse (also known as Tumbling Verse) is the way to go. The rules of Skeltonic 

Verse are simple.
Keep the line lengths between three and six words.
Every end word rhymes with the last until you start a new set of rhymes “ heart, fart, tart, smart, cart, start, line, shine, dine, mine, sign, vine
Keep the same rhyme until it starts to lose its energy/impact.
The poem should have energy and be fun.

Skeltonic Verse is named after its creator, English poet John Skelton (1460-1529). Skelton tutored King Henry the Eighth when he was just a prince, spent time in prison, was censured by the Church and in general, seemed to have a great amount of fun.

Skeltonic Verse which today is sometimes also referred to as Tumbling Verse, is from the 15th century when English poet John Skelton (1460-1529) created short lines which resemble the hemistich of the Tumbling Verse of King James. It is a subgenre of Georgic, didactic verse, the verse usually being instructional in nature. The lines are of irregular dipodic meter with a tumbling rhyme.

Skeltonic Verse is:
  • written in any number of dipodic* lines without stanza break.
  • *dipodic which is a line with 2 heavy stresses and any number of unstressed syllables.
  • rhymed, tumbling rhyme is any number of monorhymed lines until the rhyme runs out of energy then the lines switch to a new mono-rhyme series.

These findings were copied and pasted from words of Judi Van Gorder,aka Tinker from PoetryMagnumOpus, which is linked from this site.

Example Poem

Dipodic What?

Dipodic Verse
will be Terse.
Stress used just twice
to keep it nice,
short or long
a lilting song
or sounding gong
that won't go wrong
if you adhere
to the rule here,
Now is that clear
My dear?


  1. Hi I love your little poem and would like to have permission to add it to my article on this verse form at Poetry Magnum Opus. Of course I would give you credit for your poem and link it back to your blog. I would also appreciate your linking the above description of the form to the source from which you copied and pasted http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=2139#skeltonic Poetry Magnum Opus. If you choose to give permission please let me know at tinker1111@wildblue.net. Thanks

    Judi Van Gorder AKA Tinker

  2. tart is fart and your hat is fat.

  3. afhnvhub aufohoaubh fdohbu
    bfhubadfffadd ehthte h aeh thea heth et heth eth e heahaa ae eh hththhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhttttttttttt rrrrrrrrrrrr rrrrrrrrrrrrrr rrrrr

  4. this is a piece of shit and so are you