Try Your Hand At Sedōka Poetry! Writing Prompt

One beautiful aspect of poetry is the many forms it takes. No one demands a poet stick to a writing in a specific type of poetry. However, writing in forms unheard of or new to the creator is one way to stretch creativity and give the muse a boost. Today, we’re doing that with a sedōka poetry writing prompt.

The sedōka, or “head-repeated poem,” is a type of unrhymed Japanese poetry with 38 syllables. It consists of two katautas, which are half or incomplete poems addressed to a lover. Although the katauta is formed from three lines and a syllable count of 5/7/7 or 5/7/5, the sedōka specifically uses two katautas of the 5/7/7 variety. In addition, the second katauta in a sedōka acts as a response to the first.

sedoka poetry writing prompt

My first attempt at sedōka poetry writing was in Fresh Flowers.

Pink petals unfold
embracing the rising sun,
cool dew glistening in light.

Beautiful roses
in a garden colored bright,
snipped, gracing a table top.

BONUS: This time, use the answer-and-response form of the sedōka to write two poems: (1) a traditional lover’s poem and (2) something that turns from happy to terrifying.

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