This week the challenge is to write a ‘chain poem.’ In a chain poem, the final word of the first line also becomes the first word of the second line. The final word of the second line becomes the first word of the third line, and so on..,
The pen-ultimate line (second to last) comes back to the first word from the very first line, so that the final line becomes a repeat of line 1 and completes the chain!
Here are some examples: The first one is a poem on rain. Weather can make a good subject, whether it be sun, snow, storm or rain!
Rain lashes down,
Down onto the pavements,
Pavements that shine,
Shine in the streetlight,
Streetlight that captures the falling rain,
Rain lashes down.
You could choose an animal as the subject of your chain poem. This is a chain poem based on a toad;
The toad croaks and hides amongst the lily pads,
Lily pads of rubbery green,
Green algae chokes the surface of the pond,
Pond that attracts delicate dragonflies,
Dragonflies hover and dance,
Dance around the hideout of the toad,
The toad croaks and hides amongst the lily pads.
This chain poem is about night, which is also a good subject for a descriptive chain poem.
Night calls upon its cloak of darkness,
Darkness smothers streets and fields,
Fields sleep beneath a thin crescent moon,
Moon shimmers gently onto the river,
River flows silently through the night,
Night calls upon its cloak of darkness.
And this poem is about one of my cats, Beano. Pets make good subjects as you know them so well that they are fairly easy to personalise.
Beano wails and fusses for his food,
Food in his favourite bowl,
Bowl on the cat mat,
Cat mat by the door,
Door with the cat flap,
Cat flap for the sole benefit of Beano,
Beano wails and fusses for his food.
You could write a chain poem based on a grandparent, or any member of the family, or a friend. This one is based on dad;
Dad needs to tidy the shed,
Shed full of jars, junk and tins of paint,
Paint so old the lids have rusted,
Rusted tools in a neglected corner,
Corner covered in cobwebs,
Cobwebs with the discarded skins of yesterday’s spiders,
Spiders hiding in nooks, crannies and old wellies,
Old wellies long forgotten,
Forgotten what you promised dad?
Dad needs to tidy the shed.
Here is a much longer chain poem, based on the seashore;
Pretty shells washed onto the sand,
Sand a golden yellow colour,
Colour in the blue of the sea,
Sea with gentle lapping waves,
Waves clouded with green seaweed,
Seaweed clinging to the breakwaters,
Breakwaters stand ugly in the water,
Water envelops the cliffs,
Cliffs with bare white faces,
Faces of donkeys and faces of people,
People lying down in deckchairs,
Deckchairs lying disregarded,
Disregarded boats tied to the piers,
Piers standing rooted in pebbles,
Pebbles worn smooth by the water,
Water collecting in the rock pools,
Rock pools inhabited by limpets,
Limpets stuck to surrounding rocks,
Rocks distorted like bits of wood,
Wood washed up along the shore,
Shore with litter, synthetic rope,
Synthetic rope which mingles with the pretty shells,
Pretty shells washed onto the sand.
Have fun with your ‘chain’ poetry, and remember to send me your poems – firstname.lastname@example.org