Category Archives: In Verse

in verse # 15 : the alliterative resuscitation

When alliterative verse came roaring back to life in the mid-fourteenth century, it was more as a Wolfman than as a creature of some demented Frankenstein. In the century and a half between Laȝamon’s recasting of Wace’s Roman de Brut,[i] … Continue reading

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in verse # 14 : the alliterative revival

Literary wayfaring in England did not end with the Norman Conquest in 1066.  It forked, one fork following the lead of the French conquerors, the other the lead of the English conquered.  Both of these were excursions into vulgar territory

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Is There Deep Play in Heaven? Or Rest Well, Brother Swenson, Rest Well

Guest post by Tyler Chadwick. Cross-posted from A Motley Vision and from Tyler’s website. On the afternoon of the first resurrection, I want to sit on my sister May’s bench and read her new poems. So, maybe, if you’re still … Continue reading

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in verse # 13 : free verse, and bound

The observant amongst you will have had cause to wonder at Rolfe Humphries’ use of the term “free meters,” in the subtitle of his Green armor on green ground : poems in the twenty-four official Welsh meters, and some, in … Continue reading

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in verse # 12 : notes upon the staff

When I was quite young, I thought “certain” was a verb.  I was sure of this because I could think of no other reason that a choir of angels would tell a coven of shepherds that there was no well … Continue reading

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in verse # 11 : last of the awdl

To me, turkey has always meant dark meat — the leg and the thigh.  This may be because of an association I made early on between dark meat and the dark lady of the sonnets.  I had no idea who … Continue reading

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in verse # 10 : aged in charcoal

Rolfe Humphries’s fine poem, “Winter, Old Style,” with which he illustrates the Welsh meter rhupunt, ends with these lines: The trees are bowed in the bare wood; there is no shade in any vale.                                    The reeds are dry and … Continue reading

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in verse # 9 : for batter or for verse?

I just got home from a performance of the Chinese Opera Orchestra of Shanghai, which was founded in 2010 to preserve and popularize Chinese traditional music, according to the program booklet, and they do play Chinese traditional music and Chinese … Continue reading

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in verse #8 : for good measure

“All early Welsh poetry is rhymed.  The word awdl, used for the work of a chief bard, is the same as odl meaning rhyme, and an awdl was rhymed speech” as Gwynn Williams informs us[i].  This is an old, old … Continue reading

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in verse # 7 : not just a pretty face

In a response to my last post, Jonathan Langford asked two questions that I wanted to answer immediately.  But I made the mistake of thinking about his questions as I was formulating my answers, and my answers grew more complex.  … Continue reading

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