New Poetic Form: The Tilus

P1020264Over at the dVerse Poets Pub Victoria and Kelvin have set us a special challenge: a very brief new poetic form called the Tilus – following a 6 -3- 1 syllable pattern. Additional challenge: to write it in French. A language NOT suited to brevity. Anyway, here is my grievous attempt.

Lilas s’estompent en beige

moi l’oubli



Lilacs fade, forget me

too in soft



40 thoughts on “New Poetic Form: The Tilus”

  1. see
    not fair, gabriella can understand both….smiles.
    i like how you sandwiched forget me between the fade…and the color it is going to….

  2. Marina Sofia – You’ve written two different poems here, and both are beautiful. I really like the way the change in language changes the nuance and you’ve gone with that. Well done

    1. Thank you, Margot. I’m toying with the idea of presenting more poetry in original language side by side with multiple translations. It’s fascinating stuff!

  3. I love reading both side by side like that — seeing the differences. The alliteration of ‘f’ in the English version in the first line helps the lyricism. But actually the sound of the vowels in the French version are what carry the rhythm. Both are beautiful.

    1. Thank you for the very helpful comments. I thought you specialised in Ugro-Finnic languages, not French? By the way, have you also looked at Japanese?

      1. No problem! I’m glad they were useful! Right now I’m focused on Estonian, but French was my minor when I was doing my bachelor’s. When I graduated, I lived in France for six months to practice speaking it. I have studied a bit of Japanese in my spare time, but not enough to be able to communicate or read. Do you speak it?

  4. Most exciting! écrire sans aucun regret superflu et ~ sans même se ~ relire! 🙂

  5. very cool…. i can imagine that it was a challenge to write something so short in french cause it is such a word and syllable rich language… magnifique!!

  6. Yeah! You did it, and so beautifully. Kinda makes me want to try one in French, too, if I can think of one using words I remember! Ha! It’s been almost 40 years since I lived there…thought in French and dreamed in French. Thank you for stepping up to the challenge.

    1. Oh, please do, Victoria! There is such musicality in the French language – I remember reciting reams of Rimbaud, Verlaine, Baudelaire when I was in my teens.

  7. What a treat! I’ve always wanted to learn French, took a few lessons on it when i was li’l & way too long ago. And like Rosemary, i felt the same thing on your Tilus—sweet & haunting. Thank you. smiles.

    1. It’s a lovely language to listen too, especially. Thank you for sharing your poetic form with us. I was not feeling very inspired when I wrote it yesterday, but it’s the kind of form that I most certainly love, so I will keep on experimenting with it.

  8. So cool! I really enjoyed your poem. I am rather proud of myself for understanding some of the French before reading the English. It also reminded me of Ninot Aziz’s work.

    1. I am flattered by that comparison – her work has a beautiful dream-like quality. And well done for figuring out the French – did you study it in school at all?

      1. I took four years in high school and four semesters in college. I should understand it better than I do, but what I mostly remember are the words an exchange student taught us in the tenth grade. So I get very excited when I recognize something.

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