This form is based upon Algernon Charles Swinburne’s “Faustine”
Stanzaic, four or more quatrains
Metric: Alternating iambic tetrameter and iambic bimeter
Rhymed abab cbcb dbdb, etc.
Word Refrain: L4 final two-syllable word.
The wranglers and the sheep men came
to town to rest
and raise some hell and find a dame
like sweet Celeste.
They’d play some cards and take a bath
then do their best
to be the first to trod a path
Most every man thought other girls
were second best
to looks and legs and raven curls
of dark Celeste.
And sometimes even married men
it’s been confessed,
would come to quench a thirsty yen
for warm Celeste.
Since she could pick and choose each night
no one transgressed
for she’d not tolerate a fight,
When men showed class and manners they
could be the guest
and leave the bar at end of day
with dear Celeste.
But many others she’d excite
as night progressed
by sitting on their laps – the light
and lithe Celeste.
The pastors son, forbidden (though
he was obsessed)
was never able, that we know,
to touch Celeste.
He’d watch her walking to the bar-
his love repressed,
and watch with wonder from afar
the rare Celeste.
When outlaws came to town and chose
then to molest
the gals – the preacher’s son arose
to help Celeste
The bandits left the preacher’s son
and with a rifle he killed one
who touched Celeste.
That turned the tide and folks refused
to be oppressed.
The terror quickly was defused
for sweet Celeste.
She went to church the Sunday next
and finely dressed,
and left the townfolk all perplexed,
did calm Celeste.
She sat next to the boy that day;
their love progressed.
In autumn the boy moved away
with his Celeste.
© Lawrencelot – May 9, 2014