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The Carol and Carol Texte or Burden


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English Verse

The Carol Old French-carola-a ring dance accompanied by song, is a joyous hymn. Originally it was a medieval festive religious verse coming from the tradition of religious dance. The French Noël, is also a Carol, it is a "joyous song of nativity". The French Carola and Noël are a thematic genre with the structure at the discretion of the poet, both predate the English Carol. The word Carol has become associated with Christmas and Easter because of its French origin and because the verse in England centered on celebrations that replaced the pagan winter and spring festivities. Today in America we often think of the Carol as any Christmas song.

The poetic pattern or stanzaic form recognized as the Carol fell into place sometime in 15th century England just about the same time that dance was being discouraged from the religious celebration. The clerics regarded dance as the survival of pagan influence and the lyrics of some of the earliest Carols seem to support that theory as they were often highly erotic.

  • The Carol Texte or Burden is the couplet refrain that is repeated throughout the poem. It is the primary theme of the poem and in particular the refrain line of the Carol.

The elements of the Carol are:

  1. metered or folk rhythm, most often trimeter or carrying 3 stresses. Whatever is used, it should be a running meter (lines the same length)
  2. stanzaic, made up of any number of quatrains alternating with a Carol Texte or Burden (rhyming couplet). There can be variations on stanza length but the quatrain is the most popular, the Burden always remains a couplet.
  3. written with an alternating refrain. The lines of the Carol Texte alternate as a refrain from quatrain to quatrain.
  4. rhymed, with a predominant rhyme scheme of A¹A², bbbA¹, cccA², dddA¹ and so on. There can be variation in rhyme scheme but mono rhyme is the most common.
  5. joyous.

    Here is a variation of the Carol, combining the ancient and the modern. Here the "burden" is repeated in tact between quatrains. Creating a rhyme scheme,

    A¹A², bbba, A¹A², ccca A¹A², ddda, A¹A².

    A Present for Both by Rex Allen Brewer 8-5-05

    Lets turn the lights down low,
    I like to do it slow.

    I like to touch your skin,
    I like the mood we're in,
    I like the way you grin,
    I want you now, I know.

    Lets turn the lights down low,
    I like to do it slow.

    I love to watch your face,
    that smile when we embrace,
    its classic style and grace,
    cool lips and eyes that glow.

    Lets turn the lights down low,
    I like to do it slow.

    I like to make you move,
    and see you find your groove,
    J hope that you approve,
    hold tight, don't let me go.

    Lets turn the lights down low,
    I like to do it slow.

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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  • 8 months later...

Santa Soon to Arrive

The twinkle in his eye,
a Merry Christmas high.

Now old St Nick's return
to spread good cheer we learn,
his favor children yearn,
his gifts will make us sigh.

The twinkle in his eye,
my Merry Christmas high.

The ancient myth alive.
the golden tales survive.
Each year he will arrive
to bring us joy, that's why.

The twinkle in his eye
a Merry Christmas high

Our children lead the way
to bring us hope this day.
It's his good works we say
of love exemplify

The twinkle in his eye,
a Merry Christmas high.

So listen for the sound
high above the ground
his silver bells resound,
Kris Kringle on the fly.

The twinkle in his eye,
my Merry Christmas high.
            ~~Judi Van Gorder



 

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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