Writing Exercise – The Terza Rima

by | May 6, 2016 | Writing Exercise | 8 comments

 By Ashley Lister

When I make love, don’t think me crass

I’m sharing this in secret now

I like a finger up my ass

I know it does not sound highbrow

I know it sounds like I’m depraved

But ass-fingers make me say wow

And likely I am pleasure’s slave

The Terza Rima is originally an Italian form that’s been
used by Milton, Shelley, Byron, Frost and Dante Alighieri. It’s written in
tercets (three lined stanzas) with a rhyme scheme of aba bcb cdc (and so on)
until the final stanza. The final stanza can either be a single line, relating
back to the middle rhyme of the penultimate stanza, (yzy z) or it can be a
concluding couplet (xyx zz).

The structure suits iambic pentameter or iambic tetrameter and the interlocking
rhyme scheme presents a neat little form that is a challenge to write and a
pleasure to read.

And likely I am pleasure’s slave

And critics claim I have no class

But when I try to misbehave

I like a finger up my ass

As always, I look forward to seeing your poems in the
comments box below.


Ashley Lister

Ashley Lister is a UK author responsible for more than two-dozen erotic novels written under a variety of pseudonyms. His most recent work, a non-fiction book recounting the exploits of UK swingers, is his second title published under his own name: Swingers: Female Confidential by Ashley Lister (Virgin Books; ISBN: 0753513439) Ashley’s non-fiction has appeared in a variety of magazines, including Forum, Chapter & Verse and The International Journal of Erotica. Nexus, Chimera and Silver Moon have published his full-length fiction, with shorter stories appearing in anthologies edited by Maxim Jakubowski, Rachel Kramer Bussel and Mitzi Szereto. He is very proud to be a regular contributor to ERWA.


  1. Jean Roberta

    This is so cool, Ashley! The form looks deceptively simple and breezy, yet it takes some skill to pull off. I haven't got anything available, but I'll work on it.

  2. Ashley Lister

    I look forward to seeing what you produce. As you say, it's deceptive in the way it looks so innocent, but it proves to be a little more challenging.

    • Lisabet Sarai

      Innocent? Not in your hands, Ashley!

      I find this form very elegant. I'd love to come up with something though so far my well of inspiration is dry.

    • Ashley Lister

      Lisabet – I'm incredibly innocent 😉

  3. Jean Roberta

    Here is a little something, inspired by the nature of the form. 🙂

    Dance of Three by Jean Roberta

    Of all the joys I've loved since I was young,
    Attention from two lovers tops them all.
    Exploring fingers and a teasing tongue

    Prepare me for the first to fill me full.
    When love-juice soaks my sheets, the trap is sprung!
    Then three can dance a merry madrigal.

    Why turn away one suitor when two call?
    None wants one breast, one nipple, or one lung.
    I have two lower mouths (one shy and small),

    Which two can please much better than one only.
    Three sing in harmony to make a tuneful song,
    And three ensure that one is never lonely.

    • Ashley Lister

      I don't think this concludes too abruptly but I do think there could be more content in the middle. AS it stands, I think it's well-crafted but it's left me wanting more.

      Damned good poetry.

  4. Jean Roberta

    I know I didn't conclude well. (This form makes a poet want to keep going!) I'll probably have to add more verses before wrapping up.

Hot Chilli Erotica

Hot Chilli Erotica


Babysitting the Baumgartners - The Movie
From Adam & Eve - Based on the Book by New York Times Bestselling Authors Selena Kitt



Pin It on Pinterest