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Explore the Craft of Writing American Verse The Spenserian Quintilla is an American stanzaic form which was first recognized by Miller Williams in Patterns of Poetry when he notes a Spenserian variation framing The Second Best Bed by Howard Nemerov, he called it the Spenserian Quintilla. The elements of the Spenserian Quintilla are: stanzaic, written in any number of cinquains. syllabic, L1-L4 are 8 syllables each, L5 is 12 syllables. rhymed, axabb cxcdd etc x being unrhymed. The Second-Best Bed by Howard Nemerov Consider now that Troy has burned ---Priam is dead, and Hector dead, And great Aeneas long since turned Away seaward with his gods To find, found or founder, against frightful odds. And figure to yourselves the clown Who comes with educated word To illustrate in mask and gown King Priam's most illustrious son And figure forth his figure with many another one Of that most cremented time In times have been or are to be Inhearsed in military rime; And will recite of royal fates Until, infamonized among those potentates By a messenger from nearer home, His comedy is compromised And he must leave both Greece and Rome Abuilding but not half begun, To play the honest Troyan to a girl far gone. The wench lived on, if the son died--- All Denmark wounded in one bed Cried vengeance on the lusty bride, Who could not care that there would follow, After the words of Mercury, songs of Apollo. ------------ from The Collected Poems of Howard Nemerov 1977