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French Poetic Genres and Verse Forms

Sometimes get bad rap. . France French Poetry Charles Baudelaire French

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#1 OFFLINE   Tinker

Tinker
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Posted May 24, 2009 - 04:59 AM

Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry
French Poetry

Some of the earliest French poetry came from the Provencal Troubadours who developed distinct styles and forms of verse which set French versification on the path of a strict and narrow course for over 400 years. Although the sonnet was very probably inspired by the verse of the Troubadours, French poetry sometimes get a bad rap as difficult and lacking spontaneity because of its attention to structural detail. Yet the Lai, the Rondeau, and the Ballade family of forms have found their way through the centuries and are still used today.

The Albatross by Charles Baudelaire French Poet (1821-1867)
Often, to amuse themselves, the crew of the ship
Would fell an albatross, the largest of sea birds,
Indolent companions of their trip
As they slide across the deep sea's bitters.

Scarcely had they dropped to the plank
Than these blue kings, maladroit and ashamed
Let their great white wings sink
Like an oar dragging under the water's plane.

The winged visitor, so awkward and weak!
So recently beautiful, now comic and ugly!
One sailor grinds a pipe into his beak,
Another, limping, mimics the infirm bird that once could fly.

The poet is like the prince of the clouds
Who haunts the storm and laughs at lightning.
He's exiled to the ground and its hooting crowds;
His giant wings prevent him from walking.

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Alternating Sonnet

Alexandrine line

Alba or Aubade

Ballade

Ballade Grande

Ballade Royal


Ballade Supreme Stanza

Balada

Ballata

Bergerette

Blason

Bref Double

Breton Lay
CansoChain Verse
Chanso or Chanson
Chante Fable
Chant Royal Stanza

Chanson de Geste
Cinquain


Courtly Compliment

Dansa

Débat
Descort

Desdansa

Double Ballade
Double Ballade Supreme

Double Ballade
with Eight Line Stanza
Double Chant Royal

Double Refrain KyrielleDouble RondeauDizain
Eclogue Débat
Ensenhamen
Enuig
Fabliau
Fatras
Free Verse
Freie Verse
French Heroic Line

French Sonnet
Geste
Grand Ballade
Hutain
Iambe
Kyrielle
Kyrielle Sonnet
Laisse
Lai
Lai Nouveau

Noel
Pantoum
Pastorela
Prose Poem
Quatern
Retourne
RevielleReverdie
Rime Couée

Rhyme Royal
Rondeau
Rondeau PrimeRondeau Redoubled
Rondel
Rondel Prime
Rondelet
Rondine
Ronsardian Ode

Sestina
Salut d' Amour

Sirvante

Short Rondel
Trine
Triolet
Trouveres SchoolViadeyraVignetteVillanelle
ViralaiVirelai Ancien






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