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Décima, Décima Espinela, Espinela, & Décima Italiana & Décima Rima

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Spanish Verse
Décima, Décima Espinela, Espinela, the Décima Italiana and the Italian Décima Rima

  • Décima is a Spanish term of the 14th and 15th centuries referring to any 10 line stanza. In the 16th century, the poet adventurer Vencinente Espinela developed the Décima into the verse form of today the Décima or Décima Espinela or simply Espinela . By whatever title, it is commonly referred to as "the little sonnet".  The elements of the Décima or Décima Espinela or Espinela are:
    1. stanzaic, written in any number of 10 line stanzas.
    2. syllabic, 8 syllables per line.
    3. rhymed, abba : accddc . The colon represents a pause, therefore L4 should be end stopped.
    4. composed with the 7th syllable of every line stressed. (This is probably easier to do in Spanish than in English.)
    5. variable. There is a variation of the Espinela that is written in 12 line stanzas rhyme abba : accddcxd. x being unrhymed.
       
  • The Décima Italiana appeared in 18th century Spain. There are 2 variations, the first true to the original 8 syllable 10 line Décima with the only variable the rhyme scheme. In Italian verse, this variation is called the Décima Rima. The 2nd variation is written in Italianate lines with a variable rhyme scheme.  The elements of the Décima Italiana are:
    1. stanzaic, written in any number of 10 line stanzas.
    2. syllabic, 8 syllables per line, or in Italianate lines (mixed or irregular 11 and 7 syllable lines).
    3. rhymed, ababc : dedec , the c rhyme must be oxytone or masculine rhyme, L5 must be end stopped. Variation: rhymed and paused at the discretion of the poet as long as a oxytone rhyme is placed at the end of the pause and end of the line. Something like aaab : bccabb or ababbc : aabc etc

       

      Décima Italianaby Jan Haag

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Rescue

A new kitten has joined our home
abandoned by her feral Mom
by product of a lusty Tom,
like his kind ever on the roam.
Too young to be left on her own 
she was found by friends in a field
then she was brought to me to shield.
We call her Molly, this fierce, fun,
lovey baby. We both have won.
We have succumbed, our love is sealed. 
                 ~~Judi Van Gorder
 

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