Northern Drive to St Lucy

Northern Drive to St Lucy
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Saturday, March 6, 2010

Specialized Rhyme Schemes in English Poetry Versification - Part Vl

Wow! We still have some ways to go on this list. Let's turn the clock back in time to the 16th Century in English Literature.

Anacreon Ode *
Dorian Ode or Choric Ode/Pindaric Ode -
Cowleyan Pindaric Ode -
Epinicion Ode *
Epithalamion Ode *
Horatian Ode
Homostrophic Ode
Irregular Ode
Prothalamion Ode *

Well, look what has greeted us here. This irregular rhyme scheme: aabbccddee aabbccddee ababccdeedff aabbccddee aabbccddee aabbccdeedff aabbccddee aabbccddee ababccdeedff aabbccddee aabbccddee ababccdeedff that Ben Jonson attached to his ode, "To the Immortall Memorie, and Friendship of that Noble Paire, Sir Lucius Cary and Sir H. Morison". This 16th Century English poet's life, spanned the years 1572 to 1637. Upon reading this ode of his you will concur that it is made up of Pindaric Verses. This poetic form noted for its lofty style was created and named after the Classic Greek poet, Pindar. The Pindaric verses were designed for song and they are made up of various meters. The Pindaric Verses are also known as the Dorian or Choric ode. Pindaric odes are noted for their triadic arrangement in the form of the strope and an antistrope of similar pattern and by an epode of different length and pattern. However, Jonson used the terms: turn, counter-turn, and stand in place of the strophe, antistrophe, and epode of the Pindaric ode.

So, as in Pindaric verses, the counter-turn repeats the metric pattern of the turn, while the meter of the stand is varied. The pattern established in the first triad is then repeated in the remaining groups. Hence the rhyme scheme of the Pindaric ode reflects the irregular movement of the verses. Take a look at this Pindaric ode of Jonson.

To the Immortall Memorie, and Friendship of that Noble Paire, Sir Lucius Cary and Sir H. Morison

The Turne

1   BRAVE Infant of Saguntum, cleare  a
2   Thy coming forth in that great yeare,  a
3   When the Prodigious Hannibal did crowne  b
4   His rage, with razing your immortall Towne. b
5   Thou, looking then about, c
6   Ere thou wert halfe got out, c
7   Wise child, did'st hastily returne, d
8   And mad'st thy Mothers wombe thine urne. d
9   How summ'd a circle didst thou leave man-kind e
10 Of deepest lore, could we the Centre find ! e

The Counter-turne

1   Did wiser Nature draw thee back, a
2   From out the horrour of that sack, a
3   Where shame, faith, honour, and regard of right b
4   Lay trampled on ; the deeds of death, and night, b
5   Urg'd, hurried forth, and hurld c
6   Upon th' affrighted world : c
7   Sword, fire, and famine, with fell fury met ; d
8   And all on utmost ruine set ; d
9   As, could they but lifes miseries fore-see, e
10 No doubt all Infants would returne like thee. e

The Stand

1   For, what is life, if measur'd by the space, a
2   Not by the act ? b
3   Or masked man, if valu'd by his face, a
4   Above his fact ? b
5   Here's one out-liv'd his Peeres, c
6   And told forth fourescore yeares ; c
7   He vexed time, and busied the whole State ; d
8   Troubled both foes, and friends ; e
9   But ever to no ends : e
10 What did this Stirrer, but die late ? d
11 How well at twentie had he falne, or stood ! f
12 For three of his four-score he did no good. f

The Turne

1   Hee entred well, by vertuous parts, a
2   Got up and thriv'd with honest arts : a
3   He purchas'd friends, and fame, and honours then, b
4   And had his noble name advanc'd with men : b
5   But weary of that flight, c
6   Hee stoop'd in all mens sight c
7   To sordid flatteries, acts of strife, d
8   And sunke in that dead sea of life, d
9   So deep, as he did then death's waters sup ; e
10 But that the Corke of Title buoy'd him up. e

The Counter-turne

1   Alas, but Morison fell young : a
2   Hee never fell, thou fall'st my tongue. a
3   Hee stood, a Souldier to the last right end, b
4   A perfect Patriot, and a noble friend, b
5   But most a vertuous Sonne. c
6   All Offices were done c
7   By him, so ample, full, and round, d
8   In weight, in measure, number, sound, d
9   As though his age imperfect might appeare, e
10 His life was of Humanitie the Spheare. e

The Stand

1   Goe now, and tell out dayes summ'd up with feares, a
2   And make them yeares ; a
3   Produce thy masse of miseries on the Stage, b
4   To swell thine age ; b
5   Repeat of things a throng, c
6   To shew thou hast beene long, c
7   Not liv'd ; for life doth her great actions spell, d
8   By what was done and wrought e
9   In season, and so brought e
10 To light : her measures are, how well d
11 Each syllabe answer'd, and was form'd, how faire ; f
12 These make the lines of life, and that's her aire. f

The Turne

1   It is not growing like a tree a
2   In bulke, doth make man better bee ; a
3   Or, standing long an Oake, three hundred yeare, b
4   To fall a logge, at last, dry, bald, and seare : b
5   A Lillie of a Day c
6   Is fairer farre, in May, c
7   Although it fall, and die that night ; d
8   It was the Plant, and flowre of light. d
9   In small proportions, we just beauties see : e *
10 And in short measures, life may perfect bee. e *

* If only the last words are considered then the rhyming would be aA revealing the repeated rhyme thus breaking the structure already created for the Turne and Counter-turne. If taken as a phrase the rhyming would show ee. Thus maintaining the structure established for the Turne and Counter-turne. What on earth was Jonson thinking? Perhaps Jonson meant to write the verse as : And in short measures, life may perfect be. Then there would have been no discrepancy.

The Counter-turne

1   Call, noble Lucius, then for Wine, a
2   And let thy lookes with gladnesse shine : a
3   Accept this garland, plant it on thy head, b
4   And think, nay know, thy Morison's not dead. b
5   He leap'd the present age, c
6   Possest with holy rage, c
7   To see that bright eternall Day : d
8   which we Priests, and Poets say d
9   Such truths, as we expect for happy men, e
10 And there he lives with memorie ; and Ben. e

The Stand

1   Johnson, who sung this of him, ere he went a
2   Himselfe to rest, b
3   Or taste a part of that full joy he meant a
4   To have exprest, b
5   In this bright Asterisme : c
6   Where it were friendships schisme, c
7   (Were not his Lucius long with us to tarry) d
8   To separate these twi- e
9   Lights, the Dioscuri ; e
10 And keepe the one halfe from his Harry. d
11 But fate doth so alternate the designe, f
12 Whilst that in heav'n, this light on earth must shine. f

The Turne

1   And shine as you exalted are ; a
2   Two names of friendship, but one Starre : a
3   Of hearts the union. And those not by chance b
4   Made, or indenture, or leas'd out t' advance b
5   The profits for a time. c
6   No pleasures vaine did chime, c
7   Of rimes, or riots, at your feasts, d
8   Orgies of drinke, or fain'd protests : d
9   But simple love of greatnesse, and of good ; e
10 That knits brave minds, and manners, more than blood. e

The Counter-turne

1   This made you first to know the Why a
2   You lik'd, then after, to apply a
3   That liking ; and approach so one the t'other b
4   Till either grew a portion of the other : b
5   Each stiled by his end, c
6   The Copie of his friend. c
7   You liv'd to be the great surnames, d
8   And titles, by which all made claimes d
9   Unto the Vertue. Nothing perfect done, e
10 But as a CARY, or a MORISON. e

The Stand

1   And such a force the faire example had, a
2   As they that saw b
3   The good, and durst not practise it, were glad a
4   That such a Law b
5   Was left yet to Man-kind; c
6   Where they might read, and find c
7   Friendship, indeed, was written, not in words: d
8   And with the heart, not pen, e
9   Of two so early men, e
10 Whose lines her rolls were, and records. d
11 Who, ere the first downe bloomed on the chin, f
12 Had sow'd these fruits, and got the harvest in. f

English Literature asserts that the most original English Odes were written by Andrew Marvell (1621-1678) of Yorkshire whose odes are modelled after Horace and the Londoner, Abraham Cowley (1618-1667) whose odes are influenced by Pindaric verses.

This rhyme scheme: aabbcddc aabbcddc aabbcddc aabbcddc aabcdefd aabbcdde aabcdefd aabbcddc abccdeed aabbcddc aabbceec aabbcddc defines the ode, "On the Death of Mr. William Hervey" written by Abraham Cowley.

This rhyme scheme: aabbccdeeddd aabbccddeefffgg ababbccddeeeffgghhiijjkk aabbccddeecff is associated with the Cowleyan  Pindaric ode, "The Resurrection".

Probably, the rhyme schemes used by Cowley in his odes could be the deciding factor as for why his odes are referred to as Cowleyan Pindaric Odes. Take a look with your analytical eyes and then compare what you have seen with other Pindaric Odes of Ben Jonson and Thomas Gray. Would you then agree that Cowleyan odes have his distinctive style?

On the Death of Mr. William Hervey

Stanza 1

IT was a dismal and a fearful night : a
Scarce could the Morn drive on th' unwilling Light, a
When Sleep, Death's image, left my troubled breast b
          By something liker Death possest. b
My eyes with tears did uncommanded flow, c
          And on my soul hung the dull weight d
          Of some intolerable fate. d
What bell was that ?  Ah me !  too much I know ! c

Stanza 2

My sweet companion and my gentle peer, a
Why hast thou left me thus unkindly here, a
Thy end for ever and my life to moan ? b
          O, thou hast left me all alone !  b
Thy soul and body, when death's agony c
          Besieged around thy noble heart, d
          Did not with more reluctance part d
Than I, my dearest Friend, do part from thee. c

Stanza 3

IT was a dismal and a fearful night: a
Scarce could the Morn drive on th' unwilling Light, a
When Sleep, Death's image, left my troubled breast b
      By something liker Death possest. b
My eyes with tears did uncommanded flow, c
       And on my soul hung the dull weight d
      Of some intolerable fate. d
What bell was that? Ah me! too much I know! c

Stanza 4

My sweet companion and my gentle peer, a
Why hast thou left me thus unkindly here, a
Thy end for ever and my life to moan? b
      O, thou hast left me all alone! b
Thy soul and body, when death's agony c
      Besieged around thy noble heart, d
      Did not with more reluctance part d
Than I, my dearest Friend, do part from thee. c

Stanza 5

My dearest Friend, would I had died for thee! a
Life and this world henceforth will tedious be: a
Nor shall I know hereafter what to do b
      If once my griefs prove tedious too. b
Silent and sad I walk about all day, c
      As sullen ghosts stalk speechless by d
      Where their hid treasures lie; d
Alas! my treasure 's gone; why do I stay? c

Stanza 6

Say, for you saw us, ye immortal lights, a
How oft unwearied have we spent the nights, a
Till the Ledæan stars, so famed for love, b
      Wonder'd at us from above! b
We spent them not in toys, in lusts, or wine; c
      But search of deep Philosophy, d
      Wit, Eloquence, and Poetry— d
Arts which I loved, for they, my Friend, were thine. c

Stanza 7

Ye fields of Cambridge, our dear Cambridge, say a
Have ye not seen us walking every day? a
Was there a tree about which did not know b
      The love betwixt us two? c
      Henceforth, ye gentle trees, for ever fade; d
Or your sad branches thicker join e
      And into darksome shades combine, e
Dark as the grave wherein my Friend is laid! d

Stanza 8

Large was his soul: as large a soul as e'er a
Submitted to inform a body here; a
High as the place 'twas shortly in Heaven to have, b
      But low and humble as his grave. b
So high that all the virtues there did come, c
      As to their chiefest seat d
      Conspicuous and great; d
So low, that for me too it made a room. c

Stanza 9

Knowledge he only sought, and so soon caught a
As if for him Knowledge had rather sought; a
Nor did more learning ever crowded lie b
      In such a short mortality. c
Whene'er the skilful youth discoursed or writ, d
      Still did the notions throng e
      About his eloquent tongue; e
Nor could his ink flow faster than his wit. d

Stanza 10

His mirth was the pure spirits of various wit, a
Yet never did his God or friends forget; a
And when deep talk and wisdom came in view, b
      Retired, and gave to them their due. b
For the rich help of books he always took, c
      Though his own searching mind before d
      Was so with notions written o'er, d
As if wise Nature had made that her book. c

Stanza 11

With as much zeal, devotion, piety, a
He always lived, as other saints do die. a
Still with his soul severe account he kept, b
      Weeping all debts out ere he slept. b
Then down in peace and innocence he lay, c
      Like the Sun's laborious light, e
      Which still in water sets at night, e
Unsullied with his journey of the day. c

Stanza 12

But happy Thou, ta'en from this frantic age, a
Where ignorance and hypocrisy does rage! a
A fitter time for Heaven no soul e'er chose— b
      The place now only free from those. b
There 'mong the blest thou dost for ever shine; c
      And wheresoe'er thou casts thy view d
      Upon that white and radiant crew, d
See'st not a soul clothed with more light than thine. c

The Resurrection

1.
     Not Winds to Voyagers at Sea, a
     Nor Showers to Earth more necessary be, a
    (Heav'ens vital seed cast on the womb of Earth b
       To give the fruitful Year a Birth) b
       Then Verse to Virtue, which can do c
    The Midwifes Office, and the Nurses too; c
    It feeds it strongly, and it cloathes it gay, d
       And when it dyes, with comely pride e
    Embalms it, and erects a Pyramide  e
       That never will decay d
       Till Heaven it self shall melt away, d
    And nought behind it stay. d

2.
    Begin the Song, and strike the Living Lyre; a
    Lo how the Years to come, a numerous and well-fitted Quire, a
    All hand in hand do decently advance, b
    And to my Song with smooth and equal measures dance. b
    Whilst the dance lasts, how long so e're it be, c
    My Musicks voyce shall bear it companie. c
       Till all gentle Notes be drown'd d
       In the last Trumpets dreadful sound. d
    That to the Spheres themselves shall silence bring, e
       Untune the Universal String. e
       Then all the wide extended Sky, f
       And all th'harmonious Worlds on high, f
       And Virgils sacred work shall dy. f
    And he himself shall see in one Fire shine g
    Rich Natures ancient Troy, though built by Hands Divine.g

3.
       Whom Thunders dismal noise, a
    And all that Prophets and Apostles louder spake, b
    And all the Creatures plain conspiring voyce,  a
       Could not whilst they liv'ed, awake, b
       This mightier sound shall make b
       When Dead t'arise, c
       And open Tombs, and open Eyes c
    To the long Sluggards of five thousand years. d
    This mightier Sound shall make its Hearers Ears. d
    Then shall the scatter'ed Atomes crowding come e
       Back to their Ancient Home, e
       Some from Birds, from Fishes some, e
       Some from Earth, and some from Seas,   f
       Some from Beasts, and some from Trees. f
       Some descend from Clouds on high, g
       Some from Metals upwards fly, g
    And where th'attending Soul naked, and shivering stands, h
       Meet, salute, and joyn their hands. h
    As disperst Souldiers at the Trumpets call, i
       Hast to their Colours all. i
       Unhappy most, like Tortur'ed Men, j
    Their Joynts new set, to be new rackt agen. j
       To Mountains they for shelter pray, k
    The Mountains shake, and run about no less confus'd then They.k

4.
    Stop, stop, my Muse, allay thy vig'orous heat, a
       Kindled at a Hint so Great. a
    Hold thy Pindarique Pegasus closely in, b
       Which does to rage begin, b
    And this steep Hill would gallop up with violent course, c
    'Tis an unruly, and a hard-Mouth'd Horse, c
       Fierce, and unbroken yet, d
       Impatient of the Spur or Bit. d
    Now praunces stately, and anon flies o're the place, e
    Disdains the servile Law of any settled pace, e
    Conscious and proud of his own natural force. c
       'Twill no unskilful Touch endure, f
    But flings Writer and Reader too that sits not sure. f

Wait for the continuation

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Haiti Under Rubble from 7.0 Earthquake

Natural disasters whenever and wherever they occur impact on all of our lives. The Good Book says we are our brothers and sisters keepers lead by the Holy Spirit. Hence, we must do our part when disaster shows its ugly face. Any assistance, great or small, given from generous and loving hearts has equal weight. I'm passing on this information I received that Barbadians can go to First Caribbean Bank to donate to the Disaster Relief Fund for Haiti. The banking information is shown below:

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