2008 Form Challenges

#11 Goethe Stanza

A very different poetry form than most poets are used to, is the Goethe Stanza. With this one each stanza comprises of a single line, a couplet and a single line. Each single line rhymes with a line from the couplet, one starting and one completing the stanza. Here is the suggested pattern, there is no set meter:
x x x x x x x a

x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x a

x x x x x x x b

Here is an example by Goethe:

The Goldsmith's Apprentice

My neighbour, none can e'er deny,

Is a most beauteous maid;
Her shop is ever in mine eye,

When working at my trade.

To ring and chain I hammer then

The wire of gold assay'd,
And think the while: "For Kate, oh when

Will such a ring be made?"

* The rest of this poem *.

Goethe Stanza Challenge Replies

Maryse Achong

Always Say Goobye
Bridging the Gap
Shake Up
Simply Put

Lorainne Dafney

We'll See

Kevin McKinney

Diet of Worms
Novices No More

Peggy Nelson

Briges In Life
Evil Flowers
Flower Power
So Many Briges
Summertime Blues

Ryter Roethicle

Dream On
Eco Friendly
For The Birds
Foolish Dreams
Grey Hope
Life's Bridges
Long Overdue
Nature's Rules
No Choice
Somewhere In Time
Unequal Torment
X as in Kiss
You have built a bridge

Leny Roovers

Golden Edges

Sasha Walker

We'll See

Nia Wynne

I Saw Your Heart
Lost Dove

Maryse Achong

Always Say Goodbye

Though I've no doubt he loved me true,

'Twas not enough to make him stay
To bid me a final 'adieu,'

When he left on that fateful day.

So now each time a loved one goes

I always make sure that I say
A fond farewell, one never knows

If one of us will go away.

We may not have the chance again

To say 'goodbye' or to convey
Our sentiments; and I'll not feign

That such a thing can heavy weigh.

When I lie dying or you're dead,
'Twould be to my utter dismay
To realize I had not said

"Be well, God bless, go on your way."


Bridging the Gap

I wish there was a bridge 'twixt earth and sky

One that I could journey across at will,
I'd be a 'frequent traveller," no lie,

How many fantasies that would fulfill.

And if they wanted to control the flow

Between both worlds, they could impose a fee,
Or grant permits, that would be apropos;

I'd welcome either way quite happily.

I'd want to visit heaven that's for sure,

Because I have so many loved ones there
And maybe they could take me on a tour,

Though that might make me want to stay, I swear.

I would like a 'close up' view of the sun,

And to witness the moon come out at night,
To walk amongst the stars would be such fun,

(Just think of all the poetry I'd write!)

Until that day I'll just sit here and think

About the bridge I know I'll cross one day,
One moment I'll be here, then in the blink

Of an eye I'll be fin'lly on my way!



An earthquake just now gave us a good shake,

It has left us unsettled, nervous too,
I probably won't sleep, will stay awake...

Almost like waiting for the other shoe...

It scared the pups, they were both half asleep,

But there is no doubt in my mind they knew
Something was wrong, for they stopped counting sheep,
Began to bark, caused a hullabaloo.

It is still now, too still if you ask me,

But I must make the effort to subdue
My fears, and trust that everything will be

All right; there's nothing more that I can do.


Simply Put

I know that He will take me all the way,

Accompanying me through good and bad,
From darkest night into the brightest day;

No more constant Friend have I ever had.

I trust my Faith will withstand every test

No matter how difficult it may be,
And even when my mind wants to protest,

I know that He'll be standing right by me.
And if some day my world is torn apart,

If arrows pierce me to my very core,
Let Hope take its place firmly in my heart,

And soothe me 'til I don't hurt anymore.

But if I can't Love this is all for naught,

This watchword by which every man should live,
Not something to be borrowed, lent or bought.

How can we want to get if we won't give?

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Lorainne Dafney

We'll See

Someday when we are sipping tea

In its amber colors of time
I will close my eyes and then see

Our memories left to climb

As we grow older and look back

This album which is in my heart
Will have love and never will lack

Pages for new stories to start

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Kevin McKinney

Diet of Worms

In my culinary education,

I've managed to discover bit by bit,
the truth comes learned, not by revelation,

we need just labor to uncover it.

While priest and prophet cook up something more

than what we've earned, what's already given,
reducing something grand to keeping score,

though all the while, begging for a living;

they offer simple comfort on a fork

and yet we never seem to get our fill.
They plan the party, we do all the work,

and then we get presented with the bill!

They in their council always point to death

and cry, "Repent! Surrender and be saved!"
As if to say time's wasted drawing breath,

more wholesome days await beyond the grave.

To me, such thinking can't be reconciled

for lack of evidence upon the plate;
there's barely enough pudding for a child.

No one's confirmed a second course to date.

Perhaps we cannot live by bread alone,

but what I've found assures me it's alright,
since truth is had here in our flesh and bones,

to have our fill and sup to our delight.


Novices No More

Afterward, a tear fled south

from the corner of her eye
to the corner of her mouth,

where both the poor tear and I

being sweetly apprehended,

no argument of reason
I feared, could be defended

for being kept in her season.

Of the tear, sure I was cause,

though the nature of my slip
had escaped me, giving pause

while I lingered near her lips,

begging pardon for my gaff.

Whereupon, "My silly boy,"
she said with a little laugh,

"T'is only a tear of joy!"

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Peggy Nelson


Deep in the town of Pamplona Spain
Crowds delight and cheer by the score
For the raging Bull's that have gone insane

Today, four more runners were Gored


Bridges In Life

Many bridges ahead will bring peaceful nights and days

Replacing worn out bridges with sunshine's hues
Accepting and forgiving bridges diluted in colorless gray

Fearful bridges were shaky; realizing their views

Colorful flowers blossomed at every turn

New buds serenely gentle when put on display
Monumental moments revealing past concerns

Renewing moments spent in a relaxing way

Peace flows clearly, strengthening bridges weak in past times

Thoughts of joy rising remains, now the past buried away
Crossing bridges thoughtful lest we fall into murk and slime

Gathering ties and new incentives now carry on each day


Evil Flowers

Bright bloody red Adonis flowers on a mountains ridge

Blooming from the earth's ground in the desert land
Can't miss the signals to those strolling on the bridge
A flower to cause painful recollections at hand
Beside the Adonis grows the aloes red and yellow

A beautiful sight when not so clearly seen
Flowered with spikes; if touched you'll surely bellow

Gorgeous to see yet beware of the grieving they mean
Champagne and Begonias wait at the end of the trail

A heavenly sight for those whom unknowingly know
What dark thoughts reside inside the begonias pail

Lovely displayed to encourage dark thoughts to flow
At the end of the evening while your on your own

You reach for the lily of the valley laying on ground
The mean evil flowers you've seen, have died all alone

Happiness returns and your smile glows all around


Bridges In Life

Many bridges ahead will bring peaceful nights and days

Replacing worn out bridges with sunshine's hues
Accepting and forgiving bridges diluted in colorless gray

Fearful bridges were shaky; realizing their views

Colorful flowers blossomed at every turn

New buds serenely gentle when put on display
Monumental moments revealing past concerns

Renewing moments spent in a relaxing way

Peace flows clearly, strengthening bridges weak in past times

Thoughts of joy rising remains, now the past buried away
Crossing bridges thoughtful lest we fall into murk and slime

Gathering ties and new incentives now carry on each day


Flower Power

The Arbor Vitae is an unchanging friendship

Bright evergreen to cover and shade our bridge
A vigorous, soft and aromatic friendship

A Latin family to greet and hole at the bridges ridge

Red and white chrysanthemums a gift of love and truth

Line the walkway of the bridge in a beautiful display
Loving words of truth shared since love began in youth

All feelings of love strengthened and love lingers this day

Star shaped flowers on hillside, entice feelings of kindness

Gentle kindhearted expressions fill each motion we take
Valuable memories entwined, love joined us in blissfulness

At rest we toss all fears and absorb compassions wake

Huge colorful plumes give us signs of our unfading love

We drift alone in rhythm till we reach life's ending
Content with our love we now think the world of

Ecstatic we blossomed like powerful flowers transcending


So Many Bridges To Look Forward To

Many bridges I'd built along life's existence

At the end of each bridge I'd realize the resistance
Wandering aimlessly at many meaningless distance

Wondering if the next bridge built I'd find consistence

Many times I had missed the true understanding of wise

Many times broken pieces were thrown beyond reach
Many promises exploded what once was loves supply

So many times destroying and being impeached

Life has so many steps to take along the bridges we build

Will those who've prosecuted me, hang me before truth is learned?
Have they not made mistakes or walked some bridges unfulfilled?

Never seen a perfect bridge without someone who has spurned!


Summertime Blues

Summertime brings on sun-drenched days

Laughter of children playing outside all around
Grown-ups in hammocks lazin' in haze

Of dreamlands magical play grounds

Early in the summer not a soul in sight

Temperature rises to scorch land and man kind
Northeasterly winds preventing sea breeze heights

Power outages killing nature and dreamlands mind

Summertime blues hitting all time highs

Bugs and animals crawling to water their thirst
Electrical demands all over the westernly states fly sky high

Another summers day sitting in the blistering sun burst

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Ryter Roethicle


My wings have ridden the silken morn

The patterned and silent sunlit sky
Covering Cancer and Capricorn

I have flown where birds cannot fly.

My wings have covered the world

Over all the tapestried earth
Where cloud pennants fly unfurled

Many times seen the day given birth.

My wings have whispered this song

Over the shot blue silk of the sea.
This is heaven where you belong

You are free! You are free! You are free!


Dream On

There is a fantasy bridge I see in my mind

Across a deep cut stream way down below
On each side are plants of a different kind

On one they are alive with the solar glow.

On the other the jungle has had too much sway

And life is choked, and unable to spread.
There nothing can grow from day to day

Looking even deeper some appears to be dead.

On the island everything is looking verdant

But man has not moved there save a few
And they have enough sense never to flaunt.

A low profile means no inquisitive crew


Eco Friendly

In the heavens the Gods are brewing thunder clouds.

They spew out of the high tech machine like sausages
And are cast out to form those black onerous shrouds

The latest technology replacing those of the ages.
As they fall some breaks away falling another way

Whilst the main falls to ground causing a flood
Torrential rain falling continually day after day

Turning out bad, what was intended only as good.
A machine was programmed to blow clouds away

Calculated thus that everywhere would get rain
But the accountants up there refused to pay

For a machine where they could see no gain.
"Gravity," they said and the prevailing wind

Eco friendly it will do the job just as well
It will save us lots, punishing those who sin.

Where rain misses from now on is called Hell.


For The Birds

I hear them keeping house through inner walls.

Some birds have made a nest within my eaves.
Because the weather's cold with frequent squalls,

They've taken refuge till the storm reprieves.
They sing to me, whilst I'm at work or play,

A song that birds sing safe within their lair.
It cannot but help brighten up my day.

That music they sing is so extraordinaire.
When this part of earth wakens from sleep,

Spring awaits the hatching of each brood.
A kind of promise for their home to keep,

A solemn vow in vernal solitude.
With winter ending, spring is almost here,

Avian songs take on a new sound and life
The birds are still around; I lend an ear

To hear him call, together with his wife


Foolish Dreams

Slave to his temporal sight

The mad fool dreams once more
Far into the late, late night

He steps through that phantom door.

Wings spread in his desperate plight

The mad fool dreams once more
Soaring heavenwards to the light

Airborne through the lands of yore.

Flying forth with all his might

The mad fool dreams once more
Reaching Heaven as some fool might

Past all the sane that went before.


Grey Hope

As I walk along this path, a raindrop

From a falling leaf lights upon my cheek.
It runs down my face and doesn't stop

It feels like it is from somewhere bleak

Then anonymously falls to the ground

Where in time it will gather in a pool
In that greyness there will be no sound

But the winter solstice is never cruel.

It is the end of death and Autumn

And with each new morn there is hope
Wondering what each day will become

And realising that we can cope

I see there's a bridge made by the leaves

Showing their death will build the future
Petals from flowers show they to believe

What more do we need to ensure?



I wonder and think of you each day

Wishing you next to me in anticipation
Wondering if I am thought of the same way

As I hold you with desire filled passion.

Was it fate that brought us together at first?

I am not sure why I speak this way and all say
I know it's you that is fulfilling that thirst

I am missing you because you are so far away.

Do we follow our hearts striving for that dream?

I think about you and miss you more each day
Uncertain of the direction of that loves beam

I pray with hope that love will come our way.


Life's Bridges

We all build some bridges in our lives

Sometimes they help us go where we wish to
And with that help, hopefully each one arrives

Sometimes however a long time overdue.

Whilst others arrive by other means

Occasionally earlier, most ofttimes late
Showing that some paths aren't all they seem

And sometimes a wall has replaced a gate.

Like love and a "thought partner" gone awry

Believing them "In love", believing them and trust
Never believing that, "That one love," could die

And so much of that love, turn to dust.

That road ahead becomes a desert highway

With tarmac replaced by wind blown sand
And too often sandstorms block the way

Unable to see further than just one hand.

Then seeing blue skies and all clear ahead

Foot down on the throttle as fast as can be
Of sand dunes, rocks there's naught to dread

And that road to the bridge is now free.


Long Overdue

Winters wind is ofttimes toothpaste fresh

Whilst summer's is now a distant yesterday.
Springtime is perhaps with love refreshed

Or where nights possess the coldness of today.

Need tomorrow's creed be a biting winter chill

Or should one look ahead to better days
Back to reality and throw away that bitter pill

And remember warmth of those sunny ways.

Now days are brimming with the magic that's you

Gone are the parading autumn leaves and dust
Instead green and blossom that's long overdue

And looks from eyes that flash with trust.


Nature's Rules

We all travel through life like wagon trains

Leaving our tracks where we go on the grass
Like wagon wheels on fresh virgin plains

Making our presence in life felt as we pass
Or perhaps footprints in the fresh beach sand

Where in time the tide will wash away our trail.
We sow our seed and they grow as planned

But beating nature by growing on a larger scale
The once lush fields once again become dirt.

And so, the seasons come and go, as do we
In the depth of winter there is another desert

Nature has decreed it so and we must agree
For a while some men ignore what is true

And capitalise on what they have thieved
But eventually they all will learn and rue

Remembering that balance must be achieved.


Somewhere In Time IV

Somewhere in time two lovers kissed

And time stood still for just a while
Creating a mood of supreme bliss

Fate looked down and began to smile.
She is not heartless nor is she cruel

And recognised that true love exists
Seeing that this indeed was a jewel

Somewhere in time two lovers kissed
Somewhere in time the lovers wished

Separate upon the fullness of the moon
They wished that they could be united

And even more that it would be soon.
Fate listened and granted their wish

Proving with love you need to persist
Now they have met, each other cherish

Somewhere in time two lovers kissed
Somewhere in time two lovers walked

Along the path that Fate had ordained
As they walked they kissed and talked

Through eternity their love remained
And together they still share one soul

The moon and stars have witnessed this
And forevermore this shall be so

Somewhere in time two lovers kissed
Somewhere in time Fate made a vow

And kept that vow throughout all time
The Gods all said that this was fine

Somewhere in time two lovers kissed.


Unequal Torment

It's the darkest of nights I've ever seen

The trees bends their backs in the wind
Attempting to escape from nature's spleen

With thousands destroyed, as yet un-sinned.

Yet much further south or is it further north

The city light's shine as folks watch the events
Seeing the last terror that nature's brought forth

And seeing the latest victims living in Tents.

We tut and feel sorry then whinge about gas

Then see a silver huge four wheel Honda go past
Realising that the diminutive driver's an ass

And this kind of attitude cannot last.


X as in Kiss

Your opal eyes peer into mine

I feel them searching my soul
As if by magic it starts to shine

I now know the feeling of being whole.
Just one look has made it so

What would a touch or kiss then start?
A deluge of words and deeds would flow

And who knows what path we'd chart?
A future guided by your opal eyes

And two shining souls by love united
With these acts there would be no surprise

Together to Nirvana we'd be invited.



A meal of hunger thrusting lips to your lips

Rolling the luscious slowly 'cross my tongue
To draw the rhythm movement to your hips

Leaving no low moan melody to be unsung.

My thoughts conceived in that dark earth

When love that rooted, pierced unto the core
Of yielding hearts, blossoming fire to birth

Consuming in every moment even more.


You Have Built a Bridge

Each day the bridge gets longer and longer

There was a time when I only needed to reach out
That was when our love was much stronger

Now the flood has gone and we are in drought

You have built a bridge between us, why?

Did I not show my love? Did I not please you?
Then what was it that caused your love to die?

I see plants growing now, blocking my view.

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Leny Roovers


I'm breathing in your cleansing light,

receive your blessing with each breath;
as exhalations clear my sight,

I'm freed from chains of thought-bound death.
I walk the bridge between both worlds

while shrugging off once shackling ties-
ahead, a whole new view unfurls,

where light of truth dissolves all lies.
I offer you my heart and soul,

lay down small wishes at your feet.
Without my burden I'll be whole-

into you silence I retreat.

In you all limits fade away,
until there is but One displayed.



Through half closed curtains of my room

I watch high crowns of elm-trees sway
in rhythm with bold night wind's boom

as evening falls in tones of gray.
Dusk's music sings it quiet tune,

prepares my senses for day's rest;
above the treetops smiles full moon,

with her cool light my night is blessed.
I hear the voice of southbound planes

and in the distance humming cars;
as blackbirds add their sweet refrain,

dark velvet is adorned with stars.
I smell the fragrance of night's breeze,

with cool fingers touching my skin.
As thoughts slow down, I am at ease,

then close my eyes and snuggle in.
I still can taste our last long kiss,

you arms around me, holding close;
we'll keep this memory of bliss

till once again we'll share repose.



Most branches of my apple tree

bend low with weight of promised flood-
green apples grow like pods in peas,

from time to time I hear one thud.
Each day I harvest unripe fruit

that fell into my garden pond;
high in the tree green parrots loot-

sampling apples, of which they're fond.
I hope they'll leave me some this year

they haven't tried before I could,
when I hear screaming flocks appear,

I fear they'll steal more than they should...


Golden edges

By golden edges days are touched

like dark grey skies are lit by light;
when distance stops to matter much,

our voices ring out in delight.
How could I wish you closer still,

when you are part of every breath
and in my blood I feel your thrill-

you'll be with me beyond our death.
My body is attuned to you,

each heartbeat echoes with your name,
while deep within my cells accrues

new understanding of love's flame.
As sunlight plays on windswept leaves

brushing a touch of gold on trees,
I watch the swallows in the eaves

and listen to the humming bees.



This afternoon most trees were pruned

to bring more light in kitchen's gloom;
dark ivy curtains grew festooned,

obscured each view of pond and blooms.

We sawed off branches thick as arms,

they softly sighed when toppling down.
My garden soon regained her charm,

when we had cleared each fallen crown.

As soon as sunlight reached the pond,
my goldfish came and swam around;

I'd never thought they'd be as fond

as I, to bask in warmth now found.
I'm sitting on my garden-swing,

enjoying fish and sun- I sing.



As curtains of rain's pearls adorn each pane,

clear mantras fill the room, cleansing my mind.
The sky looks soft, with fat white clouds in reign,

and on the grass a man- in calls entwined.
His bright green hard hat moves around, he walks,

oblivious of watching eyes and sound.
His head nods like a huge green bud on stalks,

he talks- while long strides cover lots of ground.
Two orange elevators ride up high

along construction's still scaffolded floors;
in a blue patch of sky, two magpies fly-

machines are labouring, yet birds just soar.
From wooden tiers, trail tattered, azure veils,

in better days they covered open flanks;
bold winds have ripped them since, from once strong nails-

they're shattered now, torn stockings on bare shanks.



I'm in my office, looking out.

High winds set trees to twirl and shake;
while builders on the high-rise shout,

Sun paints green leaves with golden flakes.
Blue skies are wide like mirrored seas,

white cirrus clouds are specked with black-
as swallows' flight with this strong breeze

takes them right up on heaven's track.
The yellow crane turns gracefully

and lowers stones to men below;
I see arms reaching eagerly,

my world is moving in a flow.
Soft music adds to inner peace;

I watch my fingers on the keys,
as words appear, I feel release-

then smile at the still dancing trees.



Inside, my love is growing

like a flower in its bud,
my heart is overflowing

as I feel you in my blood.

I see you in orchids' blooms-

their strength and lasting beauty;
you're present in sunlit rooms,

in glows of fulfilled duty.

You're in laughter's sudden thrill

when happy tears are streaming.
You're the spark in spirit's skil

and in my night-time dreaming.



Each rainbow builds a bridge for us to dare

and look beyond the colours of the earth.
Translucent steps entice my soul to share

the shining splendour of their arc's new birth
. As colours shimmer against lead-grey skies,

bold sunlight throws her veils across dark clouds;
in surreal blazing bands bright bows arise,

my heart hears angels' music tear off shrouds.
As eyes behold this wonder of the spheres,

I'm humbled by the greatness of your might.
When colours start to fade, I feel my tears
flow as soft raindrops sparkle with new light.



Tall trees bend deeply to the right,

the high-rise rattles its torn sheets.
White gulls are screeching in swift flight

as storm blows leaves through wind-swept streets.
Fresh raindrops add staccato tones

and tyres squeak when breaking hard;
inside, the aircon gently moans-

outside rings laughter in the yard.
The yellow crane swings to and fro,

drops heavy loads in waiting hands;
hard-hats are working in lamps' glow,

bowed over spread-out A1 plans.
Slowly new buildings show their face-

still empty sockets wait for eyes;
wide-open doors will soon embrace

the happy owners and their ties.



I'm weeding in the garden of my mind;

I'm on my knees, my fingers search the soil
to extract roots that long have been confined.

As shoots are being freed, tight knots uncoil.

I follow every tendril to its seed,

then try to clear the earth of hidden germs;
I'll work my inner garden free of weed

and set my standards high, to meet your terms.

Each day I'll dedicate part of my time

to carefully unwinding knotted roots;
the seed you planted will be free to climb,

so it may bloom and one day bear sweet fruits.

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Nia Wynne


At night my mind grows tired and weak

Hardly able to link together thoughts at all
Shrinking away from realities that seek

To destroy with bitterness and gall.
At night, before midnight dreams come

I wish to possess control and extol
The ideas from daylight musings I've won

By virtue of poetic arts that for inspirations do roll.
At night there is no goddess to amuse

With themes of love, friendship or nature
For she slumbers with the gods, no use

To the empty lighthouse, where storms it must endure


Sasha Walker


Morning sings the sky on feathered wings
journey, swift to slice through sleepy cloud
huntress, looks for what the ocean brings

then, takes it home to feed her hungry crowd

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Mornings are not the like before,

When we were young and carefree
No aches or pains wracked us to the core,

Only graceful liquid movement were out bodies.
When you see the sun it hurts your eyes,

The glasses you wear cause much more glare,
People don't see us the same, too, hard as we try

Sight fails to lift our heavy veil of cares.
Sunsets bring only more concern,

Worries amplified in the dark of nights,
Will we even be here to discern

To make the most of Gods gift of another dawning light?



Fear leads you to the dark side

Comes to the choice of whether
Too stay inside and abide

Peaceful solitude or stormy weather.

Darkness leads you to a bad place,

Chaos follows and gives nothing
But pain and sorrows to face,

Light not showing the way you're going.

Freedoms lead you where you desire,

Choices made can't be unmade,
Toss your coin into the fire,

Either way you'll make a trade.


I Saw Your Heart

I saw the flower of your heart

Across the bridge, the bridge of the sea
Where mermaids sing of oceans art

And love was just one part to see.

I saw the Waratah tree blooming

So red and sweet the birds all flocked
Across the bridge where you were crooning

The fairest love song that came to my dock.

I saw from afar that your heart was great,

No need to stay on my side of earth,
Instead I laughed at lonelier fates,

Knew then I'd cross over to find eternal mirth.


Lost Dove

I had a thought my mouth wouldn't tell,

This heart holds a hand in times
Too desperate drear and so it swelled,

It burst the bonds of earth to climb.

I had a heart upon a mountains crown

That fell so far from grace of love
Time alone couldn't erase it's frown

So it came to rest without its dove.

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