Oulipost #19: And in the End…

Oulipost #19: Sestina. A sestina is a poetic form of six six-line stanzas. The end-words of the lines of each stanza repeat those of the first, but in a differing order that in each successive stanza follows the permutation: 615243. The entire sequence of end words is thus: 123456; 615243; 364125; 532614; 451362; 246531. All words and phrases must be sourced from your newspaper text.

(I went through the newspaper and collected 27 phrases that spoke to me for one reason or another. I arranged and rearranged just those words and phrases to create my first ever, and likely last, sestina!)


And in the End…

Living legacies of flesh, blood and passion

Tributes found in concrete and bronze

An enduring symbol of the selfless

Keep your course steady, reach the sustaining shores

Against the chill of the night

Keep steady on the roiling sea of life


Exploring and embracing roiling life

With reckless abandon and passion

A typical, swaggering symbol of night

Making the ultimate sacrifice in bronze

Keep your course steady, embrace the legendary shores

With grace sustaining desire, selfless


Stand by your convictions, stay selfless

Embrace the motif and rhythm of life

Keep your course steady, transform the empty shores

Lead with grace, creating places of passion

A desire for monuments made of bronze

Flesh and blood legends give life to the night


Monuments to his legacy stand steady tonight

Embracing the service of the selfless

The sweeping scope of legends in bronze

Sustaining the rhythm of life

Tributes found in legendary, lasting passion

Keep your course steady, abandon the swaggering shores


Keep your course steady, create legendary shores

Abandon the roiling, reckless night

That swaggering symbol of passion

Create monuments of sacrifice, life lived selfless

The ultimate tribute to the ultimate life

A strong sense of service created in bronze


Lead with grace, stand by convictions made in bronze

Keep your course steady, embrace rocky shores

The ultimate sacrifice staggers, explores the last sprint of life

With reckless abandon, accept the ultimate season of night

Things that give life, a matter of sustaining selfless

Love, a lifetime of love, love born of flesh, blood and passion


A living legacy, trying to reach the shores

The ultimate sacrifice, against the chill of the night

Love’s lasting legacy, enduring the roiling sea of life


Sourced from The Contra Costa Times, Bay Area News Group, April 19, 2014



About katemccarrollmoore

Kate Moore’s passion is literacy, and she serves as a mentor teacher and staff developer throughout the greater Bay Area. Kate served three terms as the City of San Ramon's Poet Laureate (2012-2018); she also teaches poetry writing workshops and is an instructor in the Master of Arts in Teacher Leadership (MATL) program at St. Mary’s College of California. She was honored as SRVUSD Teacher of the Year in 2007 and San Ramon Chamber of Commerce Educator of the Year in 2009. Kate holds a Doctorate in Educational Leadership for Social Justice from California State University, East Bay, an M.A. in Teacher Leadership from St. Mary’s and a B.A. in English Education from SUNY Albany. She and Bob Moore are the proud parents of four beautiful grown daughters, and the smitten grandparents of six beautiful children who fill them with hope for the future.
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2 Responses to Oulipost #19: And in the End…

  1. margo roby says:

    Oh, very nice, Kate. I will try your method. I’m determined to write a ‘proper’ sestina before saying goodbye to the form.

  2. Robert C. Moore says:

    your best poem yet.. I am going to have to go back and read the instructions again…. seemed very challenging but beautiful poetry is the result…

    Robert C. Moore RSVP Publications bob@RSVPBayArea.com Office-925-416-7787 cell-925-200-4002

    Date: Sat, 19 Apr 2014 19:13:42 +0000 To: bobmoore33@msn.com

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