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Unread 07-02-2018, 02:59 PM
Woody Long's Avatar
Woody Long Woody Long is offline
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Another term for this sort of device is semantic rhyme, though that term encompasses mostly conventional rhymes that have some kind of conceptual twist. So just conceptual rhyming would be more or less semantic rhyme without the rhyme.

A few years ago a Spherean asked "Does it make sense to say that I want their meanings to rhyme?" and that's stuck with me. The poem at hand at that time, here, had some words that seemed to rhyme semantically & sometimes also sonically: thistle/bristle, topsoil/crumble, nestle/nest (unstated), etc.

See here for a really good example of straightforward (joke intentional) semantic/conceptual rhyming. The end "rhymes" are mirrored beginning to end, L2 with L13 (reversals) etc.

Cross-posted with Jayne and Mark.

— Woody

Last edited by Woody Long; 07-02-2018 at 03:35 PM. Reason: added a link to Rachel Briggs poem "in the hall of the ruby-throated warbler"
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Unread 07-02-2018, 03:08 PM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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Yes. If Mr Zapruder is doing something as clearly intentional as Alicia is there, then I'm happy to call it 'conceptual rhyme'. Like I said, the air of vagueness in his tone made me suspicious...
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Unread 07-02-2018, 03:32 PM
Jan Iwaszkiewicz's Avatar
Jan Iwaszkiewicz Jan Iwaszkiewicz is offline
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Is it not something like the emperor's clothes?

I can see the similarities between concepts or I can see the aha moment between concepts or I can intellectually or emotionally feel the tie between the concepts, but rhyme? There is no reason to say so. The word rhyme itself demonstrates the misconception.
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Unread 07-02-2018, 03:39 PM
Roger Slater Roger Slater is offline
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I write conceptual free verse. All the lines scan as if they were IP, but the ideas themselves run free from line to line and so it resembles free verse in its meandering associative nature although you can scan it as IP and notice perfect end rhymes.
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Unread 07-02-2018, 03:40 PM
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Jayne Osborn Jayne Osborn is offline
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Originally Posted by Mark McDonnell View Post
...Jayne, we cross-posted. Look at the bit of sample verse I just wrote on post#14. I reckon it's a splendid example! (house/cell. body/spirit. ash/snow) I could happily call that 'conceptual rhyme', but anything just to do with a vague and general linking of ideas throughout a poem then no. That should happen in a poem, anyway, but it isn't rhyme.
Hi Mark,
I'm having trouble linking "ash'' with ''snow'', and I wouldn't call that any kind of rhyme.

I'm still confused by all this... I just don't seem to be on the required wavelength for this discussion.

Oh well, I think I'll go and get myself a glass of wine instead, and leave it to you guys. It's beyond me, I'm afraid!


Bob. We cross-posted. Isn't that what we used to call Blank Verse? No, wait... "the perfect end rhymes" bit has confused me even more.
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Unread 07-02-2018, 04:01 PM
Ann Drysdale's Avatar
Ann Drysdale Ann Drysdale is offline
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I read Orwn's post and understood the - er - concept without difficulty and I see where Mark is going with it, but it can't be poetry, otherwise both posts would have been removed under Eratosphere guidelines. Innit.


Mrs. Trellis of North Wales.

Last edited by Ann Drysdale; 07-02-2018 at 04:07 PM. Reason: I have eaten the damsons that were in the frozen cabinet.
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Unread 07-02-2018, 04:11 PM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is offline
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Location: Boston, MA
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It sounds possible...

Discussions such as these provoke a kind of delusional feeling for me : ) Could it be……? I often hear rhymes where there are none.

Intriguing as this is, it is hard for me to make that stretch that rhyme has the innate ability to be conceptual and still conform to even the outer reaches of the definition of rhyme.
But there is something in my gut that says it can. Words and their meanings can be downright bewildering in their capacity to make the mind see/hear rhyme in different ways. It's really hard for me to wrap my brain around it… Is it possible that many poets produce conceptual rhymes without knowing it? --And readers hear conceptual rhymes without knowing it?

If there is “conceptual” rhyme is there also “conceptual” alliteration? “Conceptual” assonance, consonance, rhythm, etc.? Some would say hogwash. I can’t figure it out. If there is (and there might be, lurking throughout the body known as poetry), then let it be.

I liked the thread Ralph referred to in his #7 post. There's something there.
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Unread 07-02-2018, 04:13 PM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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Location: England
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So here's some Matthew Zapruder:

The Prelude

Oh this Diet Coke is really good,
though come to think of it it tastes
like nothing plus the idea of chocolate,
or an acquaintance of chocolate
speaking fondly of certain times
it and chocolate had spoken of nothing,
or nothing remembering a field
in which it once ate the most wondrous
sandwich of ham and rustic chambered cheese
yet still wished for a piece of chocolate
before the lone walk back through
the corn then the darkening forest
to the disappointing village and its super
creepy bed and breakfast. With secret despair
I returned to the city. Something
seemed to be waiting for me.
Maybe the “chosen guide” Wordsworth
wrote he would even were it “nothing
better than a wandering cloud”
have followed which of course to me
and everyone sounds amazing.
All I follow is my own desire,
sometimes to feel, sometimes to be
at least a little more than intermittently
at ease with being loved. I am never
at ease. Not with hours I can read or walk
and look at the brightly colored
houses filled with lives, not with night
when I lie on my back and listen,
not with the hallway, definitely
not with baseball, definitely
not with time. Poor Coleridge, son
of a Vicar and a lake, he could not feel
the energy. No present joy, no cheerful
confidence, just love of friends and the wind
taking his arrow away. Come to the edge
the edge beckoned softly. Take
this cup full of darkness and stay as long
as you want and maybe a little longer.

Here's another:

Erstwhile Harbinger Auspices

Erstwhile means long time gone.
A harbinger is sent before to help,
and also a sign of things
to come. Like this blue
stapler I bought at Staples.
Did you know in ancient Rome
priests called augurs studied
the future by carefully watching
whether birds were flying
together or alone, making what
honking or beeping noises
in what directions? It was called
the auspices. The air
was thus a huge announcement.
Today it’s completely
transparent, a vase. Inside it
flowers flower. Thus
a little death scent. I have
no master but always wonder,
what is making my master sad?
Maybe I do not know him.
This morning I made extra coffee
for the beloved and covered
the cup with a saucer. Skeleton
I thought, and stay
very still, whatever it was
will soon pass by and be gone.

They're all more or less like this. Part of me quite likes stuff like this, and I reckon I could knock one up easily. That rambling free-verse, skirting the edge of self-obsession and irony. Somebody's always making coffee in poems like this and free-associating like mad. Must be good coffee.
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Unread 07-02-2018, 04:50 PM
Matt Q Matt Q is offline
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Originally Posted by Jayne Osborn View Post
All I'm getting is a list of sites giving me near rhymes for "conceptual".
Put "conceptual rhyme" in quotation marks when you Google. That way it finds the exact phrase. Not that that necessarily illuminates all that much.

I don't understand this: If you come across something acts like rhyme, only with concepts rather than sounds...
How does something act like rhyme, but isn't sounds?

Can you give me a link that explains properly what the term ''conceptual rhyming" actually means? I'm still confused. I'm a dumb blonde after all.
I can't find a link that explains it. I'm not going to claim any expertise here, but I believe I understand the, ahem, concept. So, a traditional rhyme involves two words that sound similar.

But what about an eye rhyme? An eye rhyme involves two words that don't actually rhyme. It's a 'visual' rhyme. The similarity is in how the words look not how they sound. So a conceptual rhymes are like that, except with concepts (or meanings) as opposed to sight or hearing. So, here's a bit of biblical verse:

for he founded it upon the seas
and established it upon the waters

"founded" and "established", "seas" and "waters" are pairs of words that are connected by their meaning. So you can (and people do) call them conceptual rhymes. They echo the meaning rather than the sound, is all.

If you follow this link, and scroll up a page to the poem "On a brothel wall" you'll see a certain Tony Barnstone talk about a conceptual rhyme in a Chinese poem he translated.

A rhyme can be both conceptual and actual. Ralph has suggested on another thread that this is the case in this stanza of Dickinson's:

We passed the School, where Children strove
At Recess—in the Ring—
We passed the fields of Gazing Grain—
We passed the Setting Sun—

'Ring' and 'Sun' have a conceptual similarity (circle) as well as consonant rhyme.

If you look upthread, Walter gave an example (his own?) of limerick using conceptual rhyme. The end words of lines 1,2 & 5 'rhyme' conceptually, and so do the end words of lines 3&4. Though I've never seen one, I reckon one could write a sonnet, say, using conceptual rhymes instead of sound rhymes. I don't know that it'd be a worthwhile venture. Still, maybe something for Drills and Amusements?

How useful all this is, I don't know. Still, things don't always have to useful I guess.


Last edited by Matt Q; 07-02-2018 at 04:59 PM.
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Unread 07-02-2018, 05:48 PM
Jayne Osborn's Avatar
Jayne Osborn Jayne Osborn is offline
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Location: Middle England
Posts: 5,831


Thank you for making it clearer, but ''conceptual rhyme'' is not a phrase that's going to flow from my lips any time soon, I fear. I did Google it with quotation marks, but I still got only "RhymeZone'' telling me which words rhymed with ''conceptual''.

Plus this:
"Common multi-word phrases that nearly rhyme with conceptual:
3 syllables:
crest jewel,
egg noodle,
blair ruble,
french poodle,
celle qu'il,
judge sewall,
telle qu'elle,
telle qu'il,
fresh juice,
press juice"

Are they taking the p*ss, or what??? Fresh juice nearly rhymes with conceptual? Really?? Can you imagine anyone offering that up in The Deep End as a near rhyme?

I thought Walter was also taking the p*ss at first, and John definitely was (at least I hope you were, John!).

I 'get' the founded/established, seas/waters similarity - of course I do - but to me, ''ring'' and ''sun'' don't rhyme at all. Yes, they have a circular connotation, but I think Mark first brought up the objection that you can't call that rhyme.

No, I'm sorry, but I can't get my head around this conceptual rhyme thing; maybe I'm altogether too literal. I'd just prefer to call it something else.

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