2007 Form Challenges
#1 Strambotto

This was an early form of Italian poetry that was set to music by composers of the frottola and madrigals of the 16th century. The poetry is set into very strict stanzas of eight lines of eleven syllables). This type of stanza is known as rispetto or ottava rima. The musical rispetto was usualy dedicated to a lady love, Aside from the fact the ottava rima had no set form length and later became Iambic it also came from literature and generally had multiple stanzas, but musical version, the strambotto was typically created with a single stanza.
There are three basic types of strambotto and they are identified by their rhyme scheme.
1. Strambotto Siciliano.
2. Strambotto Toscano.
3. Strambotto Romagnuolo.
4. Variations to the Strambotto

1. Strambotto Siciliano

It will be noted that this is similar to the Sicilian Octave, but follows the Strombotto rules and consists of eight strict hendecasyllable lines (11 syllables), and similarly for multi stanzas.
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b

Siciliano Challenge Replies



Lorrane Dafney

In the Stillness

Ryter Roethicle

Mutter, Mutter
My Chi is Lost
New Year
Potency of Dreams

Nicola Wynter

Faded
Spell Lost

Trewir Wintlek

In Dreams I Find You
Lets Widdle


Lorraine Dafney

In the Stillness

One morning after the fog had lifted we
Took a walk in the woods and noticed the still
Neither one of us dared to make a sound be
As we watched the river flow, we felt its chill
And delighted in the wonders left to see
When suddenly we heard a very loud shrill
A red robin discovered her nest empty
Mother nature provides and preserves at will.

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Ryter Roethicle

Mutter Mutter

Should I write more to you about how I feel
Or simply sit back and hear, saying nothing
Absorbing all, treated like a block of steel?
You know my loss was greater than anything,
And I am still held at fault, it's so unreal.
Yet friends took sides balancing everything
In their eyes they saw only the other deal,
It should be past, but some are still muttering.

-----

My Chi is Lost

My chi is lost out there, a free naked spirit,
Searching for plum blossom in the morning grass.
Stolen from my human frame by an Afrit
Why did I not stay with Po? Stead Africas
Called me to her with her many mysteries,
How much the heat and sweet flowered scents contrast.
My chi is lost somewhere, a free naked spirit,
Searching for plum blossom in the morning grass.

-----

New Year

Tonight is the first new moon of this new year
Not ashamed just shy, wondering what’s happening.
See, it hide within the clouds then disappear,
Just for a while, black clouds hide the golden ring
Liquid moonshine falls, welcome patches appear,
But this site is only a temporary thing.
With the site of gold again it’s what we fear,
And brown dryness proves that rain’s a passing thing.

-----

The Potency of Dreams

Lesser loves have died more happier for nought,
Dare I dream as much, and they can be of thee,
Lending such a power and strength to my thought,
When any fool knows that to wake need not be to see?
Shall I open my eyes happy with what’s bought
Content how seem’d so cheap is mortality,
And for that precious love I so blindly sought,
Each hour a façade of accepted reality.

Each hour a façade of accepted reality,
And yet I am sick from this want and desire.
My hapless dreams have caused my heart to see,
Passion can be summoned easy by the hour.
Within my breast beats a heart tortured by thee
I dare that you know within your heart this fire.
And dare also you share my mortality,
Apparent calm yet inside full of desire?

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Nicola Wynter

Faded

Sunny days and rainbow displays are now gone,
All things delay their colors as winter holds.
Everything is blue, gray and white, come the dawn;
Come the death of lovers roses, night unfolds.
Fate has upheld it's aims as the rains, bygone,
Dry bones old and tattered ribbons, friendships gold.
Nevermore's raven casts new stones, read upon,
Then carried them away on hueless wings, cold

-----

A Spell Lost

On dappled ground a shadow appears to shape
A shoulder on which sunbeams shine, moonbeams dream,
Yet there's no peace around, just another drape
Of light and darkened hours from whence there's no stream,
No brook babbling along the lonely ways, scraped
Into a semblance, something special that gleams.
Forever is lost in a likely green nook,
As pages we write or read, a spell we forsook.

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Trewir Wintlek

In Dreams I Find You

Each night before falling into our new dreams
Eccentric wishes, peaceful; we both confess
Affectionate love gladly given in themes
We’ve dreamt splendid moments; each tender caress
Our Dreaming now filters life’s painful extremes
Soft loving touches, no words need to express
Misgivings clouding, shall we drift back in dreams?
Ending all our dreams unsurpassed with finesse

-----

Lets Widdle

He floods my mind with his humorous riddles
Making love spells spin within my shattered mind
Will our love arise; will it be more Piddles?
Gathering golden moments, two people bind
We are not Russian; next move in the Middle
We’ll find ourselves more worthy, ever so kind
playing, laughing, but; Lately we widdle
We’ll run for a touch down, leave past tense behind

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2. Strambotto Toscano

As stated previously it is similar to the Ottava Rima, but consists of eight strict hendecasyllable lines (11 syllables) This form is used for stand alone poems, but can be used for multiple stanzas. When writing muliple stanzas (as in a song), it is usual to link each stanza by either a refrain or using the whole or part of the last line of the previous stanza as the first line of the next stanza:
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x c
x x x x x x x x x x c

Toscano Challenge Replies



Ryter Roethicle

Amava Sempre (Always Loved)
Hopes and Dreams
I heard not a bird sound

Trewir Wintlek

Silence Circles My Being

Nicola Wynter

A Jamais Aimé (Ever Loved)
A Spell Lost


Ryter Roethicle

Amava Sempre (Always Loved)

There is a corner at the end of the sky,
Where each night a single star sits all alone.
That is our star, the one we always wish by.
Together in spite of all that fate has thrown,
We have always loved, time’s no mystery.
Some lives we forget until the path is shown,
And when it is dim, you cannot see the same,
Until there is a flicker, that lights the flame.

Always there’s been a flicker that lit the flame
Sometimes late so we have so little to share,
Sometimes it seems that fate is playing a game,
And sometimes we can have as much as we dare.
That is life, that is love, and we can only claim
What fate allows, giving us our lifetimes share,
And only pray to that star we always wish by.
In that same corner at the end of the sky.

-----

Hopes and Dreams

As night time descends by candle lights flicker,
I think of you and wish for so many things,
Too complex for our lives and I would prefer,
A more simple one, like two birds on the wing.
What kind of heart would never ever transfer
Too where life is free, and all hearts freely sing?
I can only wish and dream, it to be true,
But more so if it were spent ever with you.

-----

I heard not a bird sound

I heard not a bird sound in the trees today.
The birds were listening, silent as they mourned,
And the wind did not disturb them in any way.
The death of winter was always forewarned
In spite of its struggle that it will always stay
But death, and darkness and cold are ‘er scorned.
The pains of summer’s birth now ease for awhile,
The beaches start to fill, and the vendors smile.


Trewir Wintlek

Silence Circles My Being

Stranded and alone in the white drifting snow
No signs of movement, silence enters my head
Chills running rampant from the winds that blow
So cold, so chilled and shocked by what lays ahead
Looking, seeking for shelter to warm my soul
My God! Dear God! I see visions of the dead
The Sun has arisen; warmth comforts the land
My Love, I’m going home, God wins what was planned.

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Nicola Wynter

A Jamais Aimé (Ever Loved).

Eternity joins between night and dawning
Where journeys end then begins again in dreams,
That were our dream, the one we’re always sharing,
United in light of moon, sun gone, it seems
The dreams always were, love not all its seeming,
Sometimes we forgot the dream till it beams,
And when it is lost, cannot find the scheming,
Until dawns twinkle that renews such loving.

Always there has been a glimmer that followed
Often slow so there is so little to see,
Sometimes seeming that time hesitates and goes,
And many times our echo’s meet so free.
That is all; that is trust, which we can only know
What love believes, sharing and caring to be?
And only hope that our time coincides now
In the same moments and the same loving glow.

-----

A Spell Lost

On dappled ground a shadow appears to shape
A shoulder on which sunbeams shine, moonbeams dream,
Yet there's no peace around, just another drape
Of light and darkened hours from whence there's no stream,
No brook babbling along the lonely ways, scraped
Into a semblance, something special that gleams.
Forever is lost in a likely green nook,
As pages we write or read, a spell we forsook.

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3. Strambotto Romagnuolo

This form has the octave constructed from a Sicilian quatrain and a quatrain of two couplets. It still consists of eight strict hendecasyllable lines (11 syllables), and the same rule applies about stand alone poems, and can be used for multiple stanzas, that is, when writing muliple stanzas it is usual to link each stanza by either a refrain or using the whole or part of the last line of the previous stanza as the first line of the next stanza:
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x x x b
x x x x x x x x x x c
x x x x x x x x x x c
x x x x x x x x x x d
x x x x x x x x x x d

Romagnuolo Challenge Replies



Ryter Roethicle

Genesis
Loves Absence
Questions and Answers
Ullage

Trewir Wintlek

Laughter’s Lure

Nicola Wynter

Rembering Her


Ryter Roethicle

Genesis

Who says the Earth is not alive, look she sleeps
See how green her hair, so peaceful lying there.
In this valley her vigil with the Sandman keeps
To deny this short repose would be unfair.
A hundred years is but a blink of her eye
A thousand years and some time has passed by.
Sleep she will have, our master willed this day,
So we see her lying there at peace this way.

-----

Loves Absence

The clear blue sky and the cold white fields compare
Only with the absence in your heart of me.
The leafless, lifeless trees reflecting how bare
Your thoughts and memories, of our dreams could be.
You teased me with words, lulled me with promise
When my senses were dulled, filled me with praise,
I became besotted and filled with desire.
You are gone, but how do I put out this fire?

-----

Questions and Answers

What is a life if you cannot live it?
What is existence if you cannot be it?
Why listen if all that is spoken is shit?
Why watch if it offends, or bores you to bits?
Why follow like lambs, when you really should lead?
Why eat the crumbs, when on the best you can feed?
Question all faiths that have been touched by man
Believe good will survive if only you can.

-----

Ullage

Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies.
Aristotle:


We used to love then, but you don’t anymore,
You wandered off and with it you took my soul.
It was ours, not yours to take, and I implore,
Give me back my half and help me plug this hole.
Without you and your love I am incomplete,
And yet before you, I’m sure I was replete.
Love has never made sense, before I was full
But now, I am ever just an empty fool.


Trewir Wintlek

Laughter’s Lure

To hear our laughter when we’re close in pleasure
Makes our hearts sing to the rhythm of laughter’s lure
A melody expressed and released to ease
and told how comfortable we are to please
Stopping societies clash of made up lies
Stumbling no more with their failures demise
Responding, leaving creatures who criticize
Peacefully relaxed in what we fantasize.


Nicola Wynter

Rembering Her

The one who cared for us in this mortal place,
That secret spot only known by one's best friend,
Or that mothers often divine about, with grace,
And never tattle nor make shameful, just lend;
To pass over like sheer butterflies do now
As they fly above it all, never just show,
But lend their colors and light to; that's how
Love gives us all a place to rest, lets winds blow.

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4. Variations to the Strambotto

In the example below, you will see that Maureen has added a caudate rhyme or tail. The tail is usually a couplet, or triplet, (all lines rhyme). As an alternative, it is also possible to make a Glosa out of the form and start the poem with a cabeza, or texto, remembering that each line of the texto, becomes the first or last line of each stanza.

Maureen Murphy

A Maiden's Admission

Would that I had died a martyr's death for thee;
bound to birch's trunk, consumed by tongues of fire
or hung from the archway of paired lemon trees;
tolling the tragedy of unspent desire.
Perhaps then, thou wouldst finally know and see
that it is I, who match thy passion's attire;
framed and filled with maiden sensuality,
solely intended for thy pleasure, dear Sire.

Come, avail thyself! Bide my words! Purge thy eyes!
Too long have I waited to enjoy thy prize;
too long have I loved thee in painful disguise.

Variations Challenge Replies



Maureen Murphy

Fruitful Bearings

Ryter Roethicle

Dare I bid you Stay
Knights Reply


Maureen Murphy

Fruitful Bearings

Perhaps it was the bounty of greenery;
plush ferns and fronds mothered by bent boughs of leaves,
dappled with sunlight and shadows' artistry
that invited Eden under my dreams' eaves.
I never expected its strong chemistry;
thinking our noon stroll had slipped through conscious sieves,
beyond the sleeping planes of ego's country,
far from where my soul loomed passion's vivid weaves.

Still, I startled to feel its spirit within;
the sacred genesis of mortal woman
prizing man's presence as loving companion.
And as her song of flesh fruited temptation,
I followed pathways to love's pollination
and what your kiss sowed, in Eden's denizen.


Ryter Roethicle

Dare I

Dare I bid you stay one moment more with me
The loss of thee is far too great a burden,
One that my heart and soul could not carry,
Believe I am ever loath to say amen.
Instead, stay if only for a while and see
The truth, and what ever thing could happen when
Working as one, we find all is possible
And everything can be achievable.

I will not offer you the world that is ours.
Live my dream with me let us reach for the stars

-----

Knights Reply

Come, avail thyself! Bide my words! Purge thy eyes!
Too long have I waited to enjoy thy prize;
too long have I loved thee in painful disguise.
Maureen Murphy


Too long I loved thee in painful disguise,
With open eyes the truth is so plain to see.
Yet ‘twould seem but fleeting moments of our lives
Would be true admitting to reality.
In truth I called but you ignored my cries
Wasting life and time with trivialities,
Caused by guilt and loyalties imposed lies,
Ignoring what could be our eternity.

Too long have you waited to enjoy your prize;
‘Twas here all the time awaiting your pleasure.
There was no need to guess, my love is no surprise
I can offer you it, beyond all measure.
We cannot fail, there must be no compromise,
And then we will become each others treasure.
A life, eternity what ever we devise
Will be ours for sure, and love beyond measure.

Come, avail thyself! Bide my words! Purge thy eyes,
What I promise is clear, and reality!
Offering a worlds of love that shall comprise
Of spending eternity, and more with me.
No conceit in this offer, take it, arise
Join me, I know that is where you want to be
Too long I loved thee in painful disguise,
With open eyes the truth is so plain to see.

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