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  1. Tinker

    The Horatian Ode

    Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry Greek Verse Latin Verse The Ode The Horatian Ode is the Latin descendant of the Aeolic ode, both of which were written to project a tranquil, contemplative tone meant for meditation. Both retain the purpose and formality of all odes, however, the Latin descendant attributed to Horace in 20 BC, is better preserved. The Horatian Ode is simply a stanzaic form in which all stanzas are structured in the same pattern at the discretion of the poet. (rhyme, meter, number of lines etc.), more technically it is "nonce stanzaic" or a "homostrophic" ode (ode made up of same structured stanzas created specifically for that poem). Below are the first 2 stanzas of a Horatian Ode On Cromwell's Return from Ireland by Andrew Marvel (1621-1678). It is written in quatrains made up of rhyming couplets, L1, L2 iambic tetrameter, L3, L4 iambic trimeter and indented. The poet could just as well have written the ode in cinquains in iambic pentameter with alternating rhyme and as long as all of the stanzas were the same, it too could be identified as a Horatian Ode. The forward youth that would appear Must now forsake his Muses dear, -------Nor in the shadows sing -------His numbers languishing: 'Tis time to leave the books in dust And oil th' unusèd armor's rust, -------Removing from the wall -------The corselet of the hall. Or another example of a Horatian Ode is Ode on Solitude by Alexander Pope written in quatrains with alternating rhyme, L1, L2, L3 tetrameter, L4 dimeter. Happy the man, whose wish and care A few paternal acres bound, Content to breathe his native air, In his own ground. Whose heards with milk, whose fields with bread, Whose flocks supply him with attire, Whose trees in summer yield him shade, In winter fire. Blest! who can unconcern'dly find Hours, days, and years slide soft away, In health of body, peace of mind, Quiet by day, Sound sleep by night; study and ease Together mix'd; sweet recreation. And innocence, which most does please, With meditation. Thus let me live, unseen, unknown; Thus unlamented let me dye; Steal from the world, and not a stone Tell where I lye. Here is the stanza written by Horace with his famous phrase, "carpe diem", seize the day! A translation can be found in An Introduction of Poetry, XJ Kennedy and Dana Gioia, 2002, page 335. This has nothing to do with the Horatian Ode but I just thought it would be an interesting footnote. Odes I (11 ) Tu ne quaesteris---scire nefas quem milu, quem tibi finem di dederint, Leuconoe, nec Babylonios temptaris numeros. Ut melius, quicquid erit, pati! seu plures hiemes, seu tribuit Iuppipter ultiman, quae nunc oppositis debilitate pumicibus mare Tyrrhenum, Sapia, vina liques, et spatio brevi spem longam teseces. Dum loquimur, fugerit invida aetas: carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero. - - - Horace 20 BC The Ode Odes named for poet or culture of their origin: The Aeolic Ode The Choral Ode or Pindaric Ode or Dorian Ode The Anacreontic Ode The Horatian Ode The Irregular or Cowleyan Ode The Keatsian or English Ode The Ronsardian Ode Thematic Odes: Elegy, Obsequy, Threnody Ode Elemental Ode Genethliacum Ode Encomium or Coronation Ode Epithalamion or Epithalamium and Protholathiumis Palinode Ode Panegyric or Paean Triumphal Ode Occasional Verse
  2. Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry French Verse Débat , French for debate, is a poetic dialogue between 2 sides of an argument. It is the French version of the Italian, Tenso. The argument usually is over moralistic themes. It was a common genre of verse in medieval European literature and the center of late 12th early 13th century poetic contests. It is the descendant of the 11th century Partimen, a favorite of the Occitan troubadours, verse in which one troubadour would pose a dilemma in the form of a question, then he and another would debate the answer in verse. Since the Débat is a genre of poetry rather than a verse form, the frame or structure of the poem is at the discretion of the poet. When the argument or debate is between opposing sides who care for one another, such as lovers or parent and child, the verse is called an Eclogue Débat. The Spanish version of this genre adds a slightly different twist in the Pregunta. A Dialogue Between Soul and Body by Andrew Marvel (a Débat) was written in 10 line stanzas made up of rhyming couplets in iambic tetrameter with the last stanza adding a quatrain envoy. SOUL O who shall, from this dungeon, raise A soul enslav'd so many ways? With bolts of bones, that fetter'd stands In feet, and manacled in hands; Here blinded with an eye, and there Deaf with the drumming of an ear; A soul hung up, as 'twere, in chains Of nerves, and arteries, and veins; Tortur'd, besides each other part, In a vain head, and double heart. BODY O who shall me deliver whole From bonds of this tyrannic soul? Which, stretch'd upright, impales me so That mine own precipice I go; And warms and moves this needless frame, (A fever could but do the same) And, wanting where its spite to try, Has made me live to let me die. A body that could never rest, Since this ill spirit it possest. SOUL What Magic could me thus confine Within anothers Grief to pine? Where whatsoever it complain, I feel, that cannot feel, the pain. And all my Care its self employs, That to preserve, which me destroys: Constrain'd not only to endure Diseases, but, whats worse, the Cure: And ready oft the Port to gain, Am Shipwrecked into Health again. BODY But Physic yet could never reach, The Maladies Thou me dost teach; Whom first the Cramp of Hope does Tear: And then the Palsie Shakes of Fear. The Pestilence of Love does heat: Or Hatred's hidden Ulcer eat. Joy's chearful Madness does perplex: Or Sorrow's other Madness vex. Which Knowledge forces me to know; And Memory will not forego, What but a Soul could have the wit To build me up for Sin so fit? So Architects do square and hew Green Trees that in the Forest grew.
  3. Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry French Verse Canso, Chanso, Chanson French, Occitan and Provincial love songs, made popular in 12th century Europe by the troubadours which constantly strove for originality and perfection of form. The lines between the 3 terms is blurred. The Chanson is believed to be the inspiration for the Italian Canzone. The verse often exalted a lady love. Courtly Compliment is a sub genre of the Chanson. The elements of the Canso, Chanso or Chanson are: stanzaic, usually 5 or 6 nonce stanzas of identical pattern. expected to be original in form. The metric length of the line, the number of lines in a stanza, the rhyme scheme was expected to be different from anything that had gone before. often ended by an envoy or tornada structured in the same pattern as the last half of the previous stanzas. (The Occitan tornada is a dedication to a patron or friend added at the end of verse while the French envoy is a summation of the theme added to the end of the verse. ) Courtly Compliment is a genre of poetry from medieval times that helped set the attitude of chivalrous behavior toward ladies. Spread by the Occitan troubadours it was the literary concept of love until the 19th century. The verse is lyrical, praising a lady love with the frame of the poem at the poet's discretion. This metrical romance is a sub genre of Chanson Andrew Marvel's The Fair Singer is an example of a Courtly Compliment written in 3 sixains in iambic pentameter with rhyme scheme ababcc dedeff ghghii. The Fair Singer by Andrew Marvel (last stanza) It had been easy fighting in some plain, Where victory might hang in equal choice, But all resistance against her is vain, Who has th' advantage both of eyes and voice, And all my forces needs must be undone, She having gained both the wind and sun. Salut d' Amor is a troubadouric love letter, a variant of the Canso. It has 3 parts, an intro, body and conclusion and was most often written in octasyllabic rhymed couplets. Sirvente a troubadour song, sometimes called the Soldier's song. It often took the frame of the Canso.
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