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Rondeau Redoublé: Poetic Forms

Poetic Form Fridays are made to share various poetic forms. This week, we look at the rondeau redoublé, which is a French form with refrains and end rhymes.

The rondeau redoublé is kind of a like a mega-sized rondeau. It was invented by the 16th century French poet Clément Marot.

Here are the basic guidelines for this poetic form:

  • 25 lines, comprised mostly of quatrains (or four-line stanzas)
  • Lines are usually eight syllables long
  • Each line of the first quatrain is a refrain
  • Rhyme scheme: A1B1A2B2/babA1/abaB1/babA2/abaB2/babaR
  • The final “R” line represents a rentrement, which means the first couple words or first phrase of the opening line is used


Play with poetic forms!

Poetic forms are fun poetic games, and this digital guide collects more than 100 poetic forms, including more established poetic forms (like sestinas and sonnets) and newer invented forms (like golden shovels and fibs).

Click to continue.


Here’s my attempt at a rondeau redoublé:

Perhaps It Was Fate, by Robert Lee Brewer

Perhaps it was fate you and I
ended up on our little date
surrounded by the grass and sky
smelling roses ’til half past eight.

I know we’ll never duplicate
the awe and wonder of those sighs
when every small thing felt so great.
Perhaps it was fate you and I

elevated ourselves so high.
When others may have said, “Just wait,”
we did not. Instead, you and I
ended up on our little date,

because we had to take the bait
after catching each other’s eye
almost as if straight out the gate
surrounded by the grass and sky.

Here I am, and I’m still your guy,
though I’ve added a bit of weight
and you put up with all of my
smelling roses ’til half past eight.

Perhaps we share some common trait
that draws from the other a sigh
for even as the hour grows late
we’ve no intent to say, “Good-bye.”
Perhaps it was fate.

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