Cinquains & Connotations
plus Parodies & Personification
Last week, I taught about cinquains, connotations, parodies, and personification in both of my English classes. Their assignment was to write a cinquain using Adelaide Crapsey's formula, which contains a total of twenty-two syllables divided into five lines as follows:
2, 4, 6, 8, and then ends with another 2-syllable line.
While their assignment did not require using a particular connotation, we also discussed how word choices change the connotation, the perception, of the work.
An example of cinquain utilizing positive connotations is
"The Pearl" by Avis Harley
An oyster shell
Glows a drop of moonlight,
Polished by the stars when it fell
Through the night.
My poem is meant to be a parody of Harley's using negative connotations of how that beautiful pearl is created:
"Beautiful Irritants" by Giselle Ates
(January 13, 2013)
Oysters can't scratch
Or remove grains of sand;
By covering their irritants,
Another one of my cinquains using negative connotations is
"Self-Control" by Giselle Ates
Silent thoughts screaming--No!
Release me! Unleash me! Right now!
My older students were required to use personification in their cinquains. Personification is simply making something that is not human seem human.
Here are a few of their cinquains from January 2014. Which ones do you think captured both Adelaide Crapsey's cinquain form and the literary technique of personification?
“Majestic Mountains” by Campbell Christian (10th grade)
With white snow caps
Rest and gaze toward God,
Firmly planted so all may see
"The Ninth Hour" by Miryam Gabriel (11th grade)
Loud the clouds speak
Of yon man's death upon a tree.
They say He dies for you and me
"Crucify" by Miryam Gabriel (11th grade)
Son of Joseph,
And of the Most High God,
Did stand and face the cries of men:
"Spring Sings" by Dorie Chen (11th grade)
How the birds sing
Trees start to awaken,
Green emerges from its slumber,
“The Love of the Sun” by Abby Dover (11th grade)
The sun loves me
It never ever runs away.
“Spring” by Emily Baggett (5th grade)
A Light breeze blows
Newly blooming flowers
Decorating the green meadow
“The Forest” by Parker Stockett (10th grade)
Eyes wide and clear
See giants live and dead
Towering kings against the sky
“Black Death” by Jonah Edwards (10th grade)
The end is near.
The reaper approaches.
It’s time at last; my days are done.
"Quiet, Silent" by Jonah Edwards (10th grade)
Watching me constantly
They know my thought and mimic me
"Holes" by Jonah Edwards (10th grade)
They leave their marks
Making holes in my skin
Red liquid starts to seep and leak
“Luck” by Jonah Edwards (10th grade)
Rabbits and pitch, black cats
Ladders, mirrors and umbrellas
“Swim All Day” by Talei Brown (4th grade)
Free, happy, amazing,
Challenging deeper and deeper
“My Sisters” by Talei Brown (4th grade)
I love them so.
They make people happy.
And what will I be without them?
“Art” by Talei Brown (4th grade)
Recycling my stuff.
What will I create all alone?
"Friendship" by Talei Brown (4th grade)
It is so great
Showing it is easy
It's really nice to friendship
"Monster Mystery" by Amelia Cline (4th grade--April 2015)
No one sees it
Hiding in the water
Only fuzzy pictures taken