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Poetry Magnum Opus

Madsong Stanza


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Light Verse

Madsong Stanza is a stanzaic form one could have some fun with. It is lyrical poetry written by a madman or a fool or at least a poet in the mood. It is said to be a descendant of the Middle English, 13th century, anonymous, Cuckoo Song, which is the oldest song found in print. However, I am unsure why "they" say that, because the version of the Cuckoo Song I was able to find does not carry the same rhythm or rhyme scheme that is attributed to the Madsong Stanza. Maybe that is part of the madness.

Traditionally the Madsong Stanza is written:

  1. stanzaic, written in any number of cinquains.
  2. accentual, folk meter. L1, L2 and L5 carry 3 stresses, often ending in an unstressed syllable and L3, L4 carry 2 stresses. The rhythm is similar to the Limerick but with fewer unstressed syllables.
  3. rhymed, rhyme scheme xabba xcddc etc, x being unrhymed. Near rhyme is OK and alliteration and consonance encouraged throughout.
    The Cuckoo Song by anonymous 13th century                                   
    Sumer is ycomen in,
    Loude sing cuckoo!
    Groweth seed and bloweth meed.
    And springth the wode now.
    Sing cuckoo!

    Ewe bleteth after lamb,
    Loweth after calve cow,
    Bullock sterteth, bucke, verteth,
    Merye sing, cuckoo!
    Cuckou, cuckoo

    Wel singest thou cuckoo;
    Ne swik thou never now!














    Silly Rabbit by Judi Van Gorder

    Today I stroked a hare
    and felt his furry coat
    so silky soft
    and then he coughed
    and ran off with a goat.

    I know I saw a toad
    he hopped into my bed
    with slimey skin
    he jumped right in
    and made me bump my head.

    I smelled a cow just now.
    How did she get in here?
    with cloven hooves
    and bellowed moo's
    she stopped by for a beer.

    I think I heard that rabbit,
    his loppy ears so long,
    with twitching nose
    and wiggle toes
    and singing a silly song.

    I made a savory stew
    though won't make it a habit
    with lots of spice
    it turned out nice
    I ate that silly rabbit.





~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

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

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