Four Herrickelles by Paul Szlosek


In my last post, I introduced the herrickelle, a poetic form I recently invented based on the poem “Upon His Departure Hence” by the 17th Century English poet and priest Robert Herrick. Today I would like to share a few more herrickelles I’ve written. If after reading them, you feel inspired to try your hand at writing one of your own, I recommend going back and reading my original post on the herrickelle, where the rules to writing them are laid out in full.

(One quick note: the herrickelle is not the only invented poetry form to be based on the work of Robert Herrick. There is also the herrick, modeled on what is clearly Herrick’s most notorious poem  ”To the Virgins to Make Much of Time”. The herrick is definitely a more sophisticated and complex form than my rather simple herrickelle, involving alternating masculine and feminine rhymes and strict meter. If this intrigues you, you can read more about the herrick here.)

You will discover all four of these herrickelles certainly have a more modern feel to them in terms of theme and language than the one I posted yesterday as an example (that one had a distinct Medieval flavor). I hope you enjoy reading them, and am curious to hear what you think, both about the form and the individual poems:

Gambling at Foxwoods

I say
the way
I p!ay

takes not
a lot
of thought.

I spin,
don’t win,

to let

my day.
I stay
and pray.

Oh no,
I go
and blow

a wad
on Odd,
(oh god)

or Red
So dead

on my
feet, I
still try

to win
and spin

I bet
more, get
more debt!.

Perseverance in a Catastrophe

I know
the show
must go

on. You
do too
(No clue

how or
what for).

your doubts,
the shouts,
the bouts

of pain.
calm, sane

til one
Is done,
my son.

A Letter of Advice (to Vincent From Salvador)

Van Gogh!
Start slow…

your ear,
with beer.

your face.

it with
a myth,
a glyph.

your eyes
with lies

once told
(so bold)
to old

to mend

your heart;’
your art!

Critique of a Terrible Poet

This time,
his crime
was rhyme

so bad;
it’s sad.
It had

no flow
and no
joy – oh,

no bit
of wit.
It’s sh*t!



11 thoughts on “Four Herrickelles by Paul Szlosek

      1. Thank you, Marta, for giving me the links to yours and Stella’s poems. I really enjoyed them both! You have inspired me to try writing a poem like yours consisting of quatrains of 3 syllable lines. Do you have a name for this delightful form?

        Liked by 1 person

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