FIVE SENSE POEM: FORMULA
There are two different types of cinquain
commonly seen and used:                           Choose an abstraction

 The traditional 5-line cinquain format:          Line 1: what color the abstraction is
line 1 – title or subject 2 syllables             Line 2: what the abstraction sounds like.
line 2 – description of subject 4 syllables
line 3 – some action about the subject 6          Line 3: what the abstraction tastes like.
line 4 – feelings about the subject 8 syllables   Line 4: what the abstraction smells like.
line 5 – synonym for the subject 2 syllables
                                                  Line 5: what the abstraction looks like

                                                  Line 6: what the abstraction makes you feel

Line 1: one word, the subject of the poem.
ABSTRACTION (idea, not an object, like            THEFT IS A MUDDY BROWN BLOTCH OF PAINT.
Love, War, Greed, Jealousy, Fear, etc)            THEFT SOUNDS LIKE AN ANIMAL CRYING.
                                                  THEFT TASTES LIKE INHALED FUMES
                                                  AND SMELLS LIKE ROTTING MEAT.
 Line 2- 2 words, adjectives describing           IT LOOKS AS IF IT WANTS TO RUN AWAY
subject                                           BUT IT FEELS LIKE COWERING INSTEAD.

Line 3- 3 words, participles [-ed, -ing
words]                                            3-5-3 FORMULA

Line 4- 4 words that relate to the subject        A 3-5-3 poem, sometimes called a lune, is a
                                                  great way to boil down your research into a
Line 5- 3 words, particibles [-ed, -ing           few words and develop a feeling for the kind
words]                                            of details that surprise and delight. It’s so
                                                  simple. The first line of the poem is three
Line 6- 2 words, adjectives                       words, the second line five words, and the
                                                  third line three words. Your goal as a writer
Line 7- 1 word, the opposite of the subject       is to surprise or delight the reader with those
                                                  last 3 words. Think of a 3-5-3 poem as a
        CATTLE OF THE SUN                         joke (tool 6, setup and punch). The first 2
                                                  lines are the setup, the last line is the punch
           HUNGER                                 line. Save it for your best fact or your
       PAINFUL, SLOW                              silliest.
CATTLE   OF      THE       SUN                    Begin by listing some facts about your
   STEALING, COOKING, EATING                      subject. Pick one fact and write the first
     DANGEROUS, GREEDY                            three words of your poem-then the next five
          SATISFIED                               words. For example:
The Roman Empire                                HOW TO BE A CATTLE OF THE SUN
Spread from east to west
The last line of your 3-5-3 poem must do        DON’T GET ―FIRED‖.
something funny or intriguing or weird or       AVOID COOKING.
                                                DON’T SMOKE!
surprising. Here is the last line to the poem   HAVE A GOLDEN GLOW ABOUT YOU.
above:                                          DON’T ACCEPT INVITATIONS TO DINNER.
Caesar salad anyone?                            DON’T BE AFTRAID TO USE YOUR HORN
OK, It’s not very funny, but I am sure you      WHEN YOU NEED TO.
                                                MOOOOOOOVE AWAY FROM PEOPLE WITH
could do better using your research. Look at    WEAPONS.
your facts and start writing. Remember to       BE AN INDIVIDUAL; DON’T FOLLOW THE
make your final line do something peculiar.     HERD.
                                                FOLLOW THE GOLDEN RULE.
Write about Lincoln                             CHILL, DON’T HAVE A COW.
A man with a long beard
Free at last
                                                HAIKU FORMULA
Go to Rome                                      3 line poem to show EMOTION based on
Take a long hot bath                            your 5 senses (sight, smell, etc): 5 syllables,
With 33,000 people                              7 syllables, 5 syllables

Field of reeds                                  Step 1; Choose a season(winter, spring,
Is what the ancient Egyptians                   summer, fall). Many haiku seem to focus on
Thought was heaven                              nature. The season is important for coming
                                                up with words to use in a haiku. Because the
Men who built                                   poem has so few words, simple phrases such
The pyramids worked all day                     as "cherry blossoms" or "falling leaves" can
With curved spines                              create lush scenes, yet still reflect the feeling
                                                of the verse. Or, ―autumn breeze" might be
                                                known to express loneliness and the coming
                                                of the dark winter season.
                                                  o              Winter usually makes us
 1. Pick an object                                     think of burden, cold, sadness,
 2. Gather facts on your object                        hunger, tranquility or peace. Ideas
 3. Make a list of 6-10 facts Then, write the          about winter can be invited with
poem, using VERBS: Do this ...don’t do that            words like "snow," "ice," "dead tree,"
...                                                    "leafless," etc.
 4. There should be a fun twist to your
poem;                                             o              Summer brings about
in the following examples, your advice                 feelings of warmth, vibrancy, love,
should be able to apply to the non-human               anger, and many others. General
object as well as real humans: a line about a          summer phrases include references to
spear might say, ―get to the point‖, which             the sky, beaches, heat, and romance.
can also apply to humans!
                                                  o               Autumn brings to mind a
                                                       very wide range of ideas: decay,
                                                       belief in the supernatural, jealousy,
                                                       saying goodbye, loss, regret, and
                                                       mystery to name a few. Falling
                                                       leaves, shadows, and autumn colors
                                                       are common uses.
  o             Spring, like summer, can          Silence around us
       make one think of love, but it is          Our watchful eyes hear the world
       usually more a sense of infatuation.       Hands do the talking
       Also common are themes like
       innocence, youth, passion. Blossoms,
       new plants, or warm rains can imply
       spring.                                    Rain falls, seeds sprout
                                                  Continues life from something
Step 2: Add a contrast or comparison.             Small but strong, it grows.
Reading most haiku, you'll notice they either     -Sarah, age 14 Cape Cod, MA
present one idea for the first two lines and
then switch quickly to something else or do
the same with the first line and last two. A
Japanese haiku achieves this shift with what
is called a "kireji" or cutting word, which       Hockey Haiku
cuts the poem into two parts. In English, it is
essential for nearly every haiku to have this     Gracefully slither
two-part juxtapositional structure.               He sneaks to the net untouched
                                                  With one swing he scores.
These two parts sometimes create a contrast,
sometime a comparison.                            Slash, push, crush, swipe, skate
                                                  Big time effort for four hours
                                                  Game ends tied, zero-zero
The haiku poet wants to come up with
the perfect words to spark the emotions           Up on the tundra
(not ideas) they wish to communicate. It          You have one of two choices
doesn't have to be extremely severe; it           Hockey or ...ummm...uhhh.....
can be anything from one color to                 -Mike A. Crookston, MN (the
another.                                          tundra)

wet footprints                                    I like spring water
in a U-turn                                       It makes me feel good inside
on the diving board                               It takes my breath away.
                                                  -LaQuita, age 10, Georgia
school restroom
the English teacher corrects
the misspelled graffiti
                                                  Fall is almost here.
               It’s cold—and I wait               I like the colorful leaves.
       For someone to shelter me                  Others like the fall too.
And take me from here.

        The beaches waves hit
        Sounding of flooding                      Leaves down everywhere
        water                                     Different colors through the year
        Soothes aches all over                    Fall is almost here!
        -Tiffany, age 13, L.A.                    -Ali, age 11
Fall is leaves falling                    road
Eating crisp, crunchy apples              Silence and beauty.
A warm fire burning.

                                          Branches stretching out
                                          To grab the sunsets
       Fall is leaves falling,            Night is approaching.
       Munching on sweet red              -Lisa H., age 11
       A warm fire burning.
       -Rebecca, age 17, MI
                                  White light shining through
                                  Patterns along the blank wall
                                  Brighten my day
       Snow falling slowly
       Blanketing the trees and           --sandra, age 14

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