Comforting My Discomforted Heart

Chaotic disenchanting hearts are casting storms on me.
Their spells tease lightning through my mind, still I won’t understand.
I’m drenched throughout with righteousness, but anger rains in vain.
I breathe, sit tall then wait, project to help this weather change.


Written for dVerse Meeting the Bar using a form of common meter called a “fourteener”. It has fourteen syllables in each line with seven of them accented. This example does not have end-rhyme although the last two lines ending in “rain” and “change” almost rhyme.

Author: frankhubeny

I enjoy walking, poetry and short prose as well as taking pictures with my phone.

22 thoughts on “Comforting My Discomforted Heart”

    1. It is four syllables more than iambic pentameter and, with all those syllables, it gets kind of long. People normally like to take breaths earlier than that. I formatted it with those long lines and gave a voice recording to de-emphasize the importance of how it looked when reading it. I intended it to look like prose. Thanks!

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  1. I haven’t seen many fourteeners (that I know of), other than Casey at the Bat, which does rhyme. It was interesting to use this form in an unrhymed format for a deeper subject.
    Thanks for a great explanation of common meter!

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    1. Thanks! Usually common meter rhymes. Blank verse would be iambic pentameter that doesn’t rhyme, so I figured not rhyming common meter should work as well. Not rhyming does seem to force the reader to think more about the content, expecting something deeper, rather than waiting for the sound of the expected rhyme.

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      1. that’s the great thing about poetry…you can take an existing form and modify it. You might not be the first to not rhyme common meter, but even if you are…nothing wrong with being a pioneer! I suppose you could call it blank common meter…

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    1. That is a little cryptic. The idea is that there are these negative people who are depressing me, “disenchanting” me. Their “spells” (sarcasm, criticism, stuff like that) are disturbing my mind like lightning going through it, but I resist them and so “I won’t understand”. I then talk about righteousness and anger as if that is rain drenching me but that, too, is done “in vain”. The final line tries to add a positive spin to all of it.

      That content has little to do with the meter. If one can read the lines and get one unaccented syllable followed by an accented syllable then I put the meter in correctly. The content, however, may not be appealing. Poems should be judged primarily on their content, not whether meter is used or not.

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  2. I enjoyed the read Frank ~ I think the challenge is listen to the beat, rather than fall back on the rhyming words ~ I learned something new today ~ Appreciate your hosting and commenting ~

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    1. Yes, it is just listening to the beat. The beat does not have to include rhyme although common meter often does rhyme to help emphasize the beat. Sometimes I hear rhyme in poems without any recognizable beat underlying it and that sounds strange to my ear as well. Thanks!

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  3. I’ve been writing rhyming poetry for years, admittedly ignorant of proper form and “flying by the seat of my pants” for cadence. Thanks for the tutorial! I’m new here, and expecting to learn much!

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    1. Welcome! I’m glad you stopped by. I learned this by the seat of my pants as well and looking things up on the internet. There are many types of common meter. It’s mostly a repeated number of accented syllables or beats per line. The rhyming is like the frosting on the meter cake.

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    1. Your examples have also shown me that it is rather hard to write fourteeners that do not sound strange or do not sound like iambic pentameter if one doesn’t rhyme. The one I wrote also sounds too cryptic to me at the moment. Normally, I like a surface clarity that is understood on first reading leaving a hint that there might be more that a second reading would reveal. The rhyme and meter teases the reader into making that second reading.

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    1. I like the sound of rhyme and I would have rhymed this piece if I weren’t trying to create an example, however, when I see rhyme that doesn’t have an underlying meter or when the rhyme seems to be forced I prefer having no rhyme at all. I’ve noticed this with people who don’t speak English well, because it is not their native language, but who try to write metrical poetry. They hear the rhyme correctly but they do not know English well enough to hear the meter. It is harder to hear meter than to hear rhyme.

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      1. Yes meter is more complicated than rhyme (though I am sure their are many subtleties in the art of rhyming) and not so easy to explain, but you took a demystifying approach in your post which made it appealing to try.

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      2. Thanks, Janice. There are so many varieties of common meter and when I see the examples that people have posted I realize that what I described was just a guideline. Sometimes seven accented syllables are good; sometimes eight work just as well. Sometimes one unaccented syllable separates the accented syllables; sometimes more than one sounds quite alright. I’m glad you tried it.

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