We’re coming to the end of our love song. The sounds and various effects we use to express them will serve us in our future pursuits of poetry.

Twice a year when the poetry challenges come around, we know there will be a Tuesday dedicated to either love poems and “anti-love” poems. These opposite poles of romantic magnetism have a distinct “sound” all their own.

As we’ve explored, the lilting music of love has a quality that placates our hearts and touches souls. But the edgy, almost angry or angst filled sense of this “dark side” of love has a certain timber to it. The sound is more driven by the emotion. Jealousy, paranoia, uncertainty and self-doubt all come off sounding different from one another.

So, to close out February and to silence the sounds of love, develop some of those dreaded “anti-love” poems.



Love continues to sound wonderful! And we will continue our study. What else is there to say about the sound of love? We’ll deploy two more “devices” to move this forward. 

It is obvious that love becomes almost secondary to our exercise with poetic devices. The “bookends” of ONOMATOPEIA and ALLITERATION worked well in tandem. The next pair to accomplish this feat are CACOPHONY and EUPHONY.

Again with the definitions:

CACOPHONY is the purposeful use of harsh sounds for effect. Could CACOPHONY tie in to ONOMATOPOEIA or ALLITERATION? It certainly could. But, we will attempt to separate the melodious from the CRASS!

EUPHONY contrasts CACOPHONY in that it uses flowing, smooth, harmonious sounds.It utilizes repeated vowel sounds and what are referred to as “liquid consonants” l (as in leopard) and r (as in radio).

In our discovery, we see that the “sound” aspects we use are more specific than just repeated letters or “noisy” words. 

For this week’s entries, take one of your poems from the first two weeks and rework it using a more purposeful sound device in CACOPHONY or EUPHONY. Of course, you may write a totally new poem using these as well!

The purpose for these “variations on a theme” is to give us a more detailed array of devices to use in our poems. As drafts of more polished pieces, they should come in handy when the PAD challenges come along specifically to write “love” poems.

Good luck with this week’s poems!


It was a pleasure to read all of the wonderfully aural poems of love that our poets have offered here so far. We found that even love in silence speaks volumes when expressed in interpretations of such feelings. The sound of love is as varied as the words we use to wax poetically about it. But now, we will further explore the “sounds” of love using the poetic devices of ONOMATOPOEIA and ALLITERATION.

As defined traditionally, ONOMATOPOEIA is a word(s) that phonetically imitates, resembles or suggests the source of the sound that it describes. ONOMATOPOEIA refers to the property of such words. Common occurrences of ONOMATOPOEIA include animal noises such as “woof”, “caw”, “roar” or “screech”. However, the idea of ONOMATOPOEIA has been expanded to other imitative effects. Comparing things that are expansive, humongous, and tremendous to things that are tiny, miniscule, and diminutive, are words that are imitative of size as opposed to sound. It would be safe to say a concrete poem in the shape of an tree, on the subject of a tree would be ONOMATOPOETIC. We can think of words like buzz, splat, swish, bow-wow, and pop, but poets can create other ONOMATOPOETIC effect in other aspects as well.

In regards to ALLITERATION, it is defined as a stylized literary device characterized by the repeated sound of the first consonant in a series of multiple words, or the repetition of the same sounds or of the same kinds of sounds at the beginning of words or in stressed syllables of a phrase.  ALLITERATION can be used in ways similar to ONOMATOPOEIA because it can be related to the sense of sound. Representing sound with words alone, as ONOMATOPOEIA does, can be difficult; so, the use of ALLITERATION can be substituted for ONOMATOPOEIA. Examples of the replacement of ONOMATOPOEIA with ALLITERATION could be the phrase “booming bass”. The use of repeated B sounds is doubling as ALLITERATION and ONOMATOPOEIA because the B sound replicates the actual boom that the bass sound represents. In addition to an audio cue, ALLITERATION can also be visually pleasing and upon which a reader can focus.

So, in continuing our month featuring the “Sound of Love”, I ask you to use the devices of ONOMATOPOEIA and/or ALLITERATION within your poems to verbalize the “sounds” associated with the emotion of Love. With Valentine’s Day falling at the end of the week, maybe a “Hallmark” moment can be written in conjunction with our featured “prompt”. Either way, we are still in love with our words and how love sounds!


WELCOME AGAIN TO THE PHOENIX RISING POETRY GUILD. We hope the experience here is a pleasant and relaxing one; a place where our hearts, and minds are set free to soar to great heights! The drafts developed here should serve you well as we polish them into precious gems of thought. I look forward to all you will present here!



So, to start this off, we will step right into the heart of February and explore love. I think since I began this process as we honored Dr. Martin Luther King back in January, I’d open with this quote by Dr. King which rings loudly:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”
― Martin Luther King Jr., A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches

Love has a power all its own. It is said “Faith can move mountains”. So too can love! It surely can move hearts. And minds. Love can make us do crazy things willingly. Apparently, the cause of love is a noble fight. It has been the fodder of poets and muses for as long as we’ve been able to put words to these emotions. There are many aspects of love that we have experienced or have put an expression to.

“Love is of all passions the strongest, for it attacks simultaneously the head, the heart and the senses.” ~Lao Tzu

We are told “love is blind”. And yet we speak of “love at first sight.”

Sometimes the heart sees what is invisible to the eye. ~H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

We paint hearts blood red at Valentine’s Day; or purple to represent passion. So we accept these as the colors of love.

“The greater your capacity to love, the greater your capacity to feel the pain” ~Jennifer Aniston

And feel the pain of love, we do! The emotion of love encompasses all we feel. Feeling love is another aspect of which poets across the ages have found need to decipher. Whether laced with perfume or emitting pheromones, there is a certain scent associated with the process of love.

Of course:

You must remember this, a kiss is still a kiss! ~Composer Herman Hupfeld

That tender sip of a kiss is most savored, and is the expression that seals the fact that something special is afoot… um, aheart! But, where does love start?

Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.” ~ Mother Teresa

So it can be asserted quite accurately then that love indeed attacks the senses.

We’ve mentioned the sight, feel, smell and taste of love. But consider these thoughts:

Love is a friendship set to music.” ~ Joseph Campbell

The sweetest of all sounds is that of the voice of the one we love.” ~Jean de la Bruyere

Love is a single note sung by two hearts.” ~Some unknown poet from Buffalo

The first duty of love is to listen. ~ Paul Tillich

and conversely

True love comes quietly, without banners or flashing lights. If you hear bells… get your ears checked.” Author Erich Segal

One last quotation on love:

Love is the poetry of the senses ~ Honore de Balzac

Certainly, it always comes back to poetry! That is after all, why we’re here! So, that brings us to our cause for the month: The Sound of Love.

What is the timber of  a kiss? What is the sound of an embrace? What cacophony resides in a broken heart? What does that voice inside your head say when you fall in love?

Explore the SOUND of love.

We will begin here. Concentrate your poetry on this concept using free or open verse, or any form which serves this process. A love sonnet comes easily to mind. Then, in the next few weeks, we will explore the Sound of Love in different ways, not so much with form, but using the various devices we like to apply in our poetic pursuits.

Enjoy writing and reading this month. Encourage and support each other. Have fun doing it! Make the “Guild” a place where poetry (and you) arise!