Michael Edwards







Miss Berles, Miss Berles

with her tresses and curls

well who can she be

I hear you ask me.


Well she’s the supplier of all those spare syllables

for poets and writers and other  individuals

and anyone who

is in desperate need of a syllable or two.


If you find you are short

you can seek her support

if she’s got some in store

she’ll supply you for sure.


But when you use syllables do beware

for if you should use in excess of your share

Miss Berles will get angry very quick

wielding her excess syllables stick

for not only is she the syllable provider

she’s just been appointed the Chief Regulator.




  • Michael Edwards

    So, poets, now you know. You must treat her with utmost respect at all times.

    • Doggerel Dave

      Will try, Michael, will try.
      Thought all was resolved last post....Last Post - no surely not!
      Kind regards Dave
      PS: But must avoid her at all costs if she has now revealed herself as a strict disciplinarian...

      • Michael Edwards

        as long as you play the game she's a sweety - just keep an eye on those syllables.

      • dusk arising

        I find it quite possible
        to miscount my syllables
        but it's rather apparent
        when the meter is errant
        and your readers won't go
        where you've buggered the flow.
        But i'm courting the position
        of more complex composition
        which i learned from a bimbo
        who threw rules out the window
        her metaphors were cryptic
        I suspected dyslexic
        her spelling atrocious
        on correcting - ferocious!
        so i decided instead
        though i miss her in bed
        to compose silly ditties
        musing o'er her her ti......

        • Michael Edwards

          I see you ran out of syllables for the last word - I wonder what it is - could it be tiddlies?

          • Michael Edwards

            Should have added - love your response dusk and so quickly posted.

          • 1 more comment

          • Fay Slimm.

            Ha ha - - loved both the verse and the reference to misgivings when syllables go all haywire in writers' hands - -- a smile well earned with this clever ditty dear Michael and D.A.'s response mad me giggle too.

            • Michael Edwards

              Thanks muchly Fay - err sorry - two syllables in muchly - try again: thanks Fay. That's better. 😉

            • orchidee

              See, she would not allow ti....
              What with her and Fido, it's very strict on 'ere, we know!

              • Michael Edwards

                Better cal him Fide - It's international save-a-syllable day today. Miss Berles might get cross.

                • orchidee

                  Yes, and call me Ork!

                • ANGELA & BRIAN

                  Good Evening Uncle Mike ~ Brian here ! Love the Symmetry of the VISUAL ~ very Poetic ! Anybody can Rhyme but METER (syllable count) is a Black Art and is conspicuous by its absence in much Poetry posted on MPS. Angela & I DO TRY to post Poems that scan & are recitable ~ because we are Performance Poets. Some MPS poets do request assistance in making their Poems scan. I was taught that - for recitability - a Poem should scan. WE learned the hard way by Performing Shakespeare & G and S etc etc. All Performance Poets - Burns - Betjeman - Pam Ayres - Benjamin Zephaniah etc etc compose Poetry that does SCAN !
                  There are three factors in composing a Poem ~ Stuart Structure - Ronny Rhyme & Silla Berles ~ These three but the greatest of these is SILLA ~ AMEN !

                  Blessings & Prayers to You & Jeanne
                  Love Angela Brian & Smokey 💛💛💛

                  • Michael Edwards

                    I totally agree about meter although, for me, it's more about rythmic structure than strict syllable count. If it doesn't roll off the tongue and is full of glotal stops then it's not for me. Hopefully most of mine have good metre structure but sometimes it can be down to pronunciation and it's easy to forget that a different pronunciation can alter the rythmic structure. Although I speak RP I DO try to avoid this trap but sometimes it creeps in when someone else reads it..

                    In fact I prefer rythmic structure over both syllable count and rhyme. Although I do admire Pam Ayres I sometimes find that, in striving to maintain rhyme, she falls into the moon June trap which, for me at least, deflects from her work.
                    Sorry to admit it but the last line of the first stanza above falls into that trap but I'll sort it out before I add it to my files.

                    • Doggerel Dave

                      Not quite sure if, in this debate, the discussion revolves just around syllables and their number or includes 'stressed' and 'unstressed' - how they relate to each other. That's my understanding of 'metre'. And I have to tell you I never came to grips with it. Can't identify the difference. But feel, however that I know when a line "swings" and also can count to seven, ten or whatever. Don't understand the rules of grammar either, so can only hope that what passes for poetry and prose for me is acceptable and more or less understandable to others.

                    • 1 more comment

                    • The Uneducated O.A.P

                      Syllables, found out what they were a short while back, scan? No sorry, meter? Nope, I just write what comes into my head, don't even know what it means sometimes, some people like it, some don't.

                      • Michael Edwards

                        You keep writing 'em Bill - they all read good to me.

                      • Goldfinch60

                        Syllables are so important and not ot be messed around unless you suffer from hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia


                        • Michael Edwards

                          My lungs go all weak trying to say that - perhaps I've got Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis

                          • Goldfinch60

                            Surely that word is sesquipedalian in its nature.

                          • L. B. Mek

                            well I bow to the mastery that is Dusk Arising's comment above,
                            but for my two cents I'll just add that one way to bypass Miss Berles restrictions is to utilise the mind-numbingly endless brilliance that is repetition - of a verse or a word, it matters little, the result is what counts-out - the smooth rhythms in classic's majesty: like our beloved Tyger's and late night Raven's with nothing more than a landing cushion of nevermore's...
                            alternatively, just sing out your miscounted syllables with the warmth of Cilla's accent and we'll all have a 'lorra lorra laughs',
                            good write Michael thanks for inspiring my little scribble

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