Englyn unodle union

The englyn is a Welsh verse form, and a difficult one. On the web, there are some definitions of the englyn that make it seem simple, but they are wrong. As well as syllable counts and rhyme, there is the important matter of cynghanedd, a concept peculiar to Celtic poetry. My first englyn (I have only written two, and have no plans to do any more) took me almost a whole afternoon to write, despite the form only having four lines. It turned out like this:

In flight, the butterfly knows utter bliss.
Sun today, soon to die,
Full of joy, life on the fly
Scales the void, the scombroid sky.

The sixth syllable of the first line rhymes with the other three lines. The syllable counts are 10, 6, 7, 7. And then there’s the cynghanedd…
Cynghanedd is an attribute of a line of poetry, and there are several kinds of it. Each is a tightly-specified structural requirement involving rhyme or alliteration, or both. There are four kinds relevant to the englyn. Each line of the englyn must exhibit some kind of cynghanedd. Some kinds can be used in particular positions within the englyn, and not others. 
My example uses all four kinds of cynghanedd, but this is not essential. The first line exhibits cynghanedd lusg, the second cynghanedd groes (which is hard to do in English), the third cynghanedd draws, and the fourth cynghanedd sain. I believe I have written a perfectly-formed englyn, but it is hard to be certain, since the requirements are so complicated. I wrote it using a description of the englyn by Dan Pugh in the magazine Poetry Nottingham International (Vol 55 No 1, Spring 2001). My butterfly englyn appeared in Vol 55 No 2 and no-one complained about it, so perhaps it really is OK. 

Pasted from http://www.volecentral.co.uk/vf/englyn.htm
My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource.
Wikipedia definitions:
Cynghanedd groes (“cross-harmony”)[edit]
All consonants surrounding the main stressed vowel before the caesura must be repeated after it in the same order. However, the final consonants of the final words of each half of the line must be different, as must the main stressed vowel of each half. For example:
clawdd i ddal / cal ddwy ddwylaw
CL Dd Dd L / C L Dd Dd L
Cynghanedd draws (partial “cross-harmony”)
Exactly as in cynghanedd groes, except that there are consonants at the beginning of the second half of the line which are not present in the series of ‘echoed’ consonants:
Rhowch wedd wen dan orchudd iâ (R. Williams Parry) [‘Place a white face under a veil of ice’]
Here the consonant sequence {rh ch dd [accent]} is repeated with different stressed vowels (short <e> and long <â>). It will be noticed that the <n> at the end of the first half plays no part in the cynghanedd: the line-final word, “iâ” instead ends in a vowel; if this word also ended in an <n>, there would be generic rhyme between the two words, which is not permitted in cynghanedd.
Note that the {d n} of the second half of the line is also not part of the cynghanedd: this is the difference between cynghanedd groes and cynghanedd draws. There may be any number of unanswered consonants in this part of the line, as long as the initial sequence of consonants and accent is repeated; compare an extreme possibility, where only one syllable is repeated:
Pla ar holl ferched y plwyf! (Dafydd ap Gwilym) [‘A plague on all the girls of the parish!’]
(Words beginning with h- are treated as beginning with a vowel.)
Cynghanedd sain (“sound-harmony”)
The cynghanedd sain is characterised by internal rhyme. If the line is divided into three sections by its two caesuras, the first and second sections rhyme, and the third section repeats the consonantal patterns of the second. For example:
pant yw hwy / na llwy / na llaw
/ N Ll / N Ll
Cynghanedd lusg (“drag-harmony”)
The final syllable before the caesura in the first half of the line makes full rhyme with the penultimate syllable of the line-final polysyllabic word (i.e. the main stressed syllable of the second half). For example:
duw er ei radd / a’i addef,

My example

Self-Doubt (Englyn unodle union)
  (én-glin éen-oddle éen-yon)

She has undenied wit, yet denies it
At times she too must sit
and speculate – but a bit,
Did I peculate this hit?

© Lawrencealot – December 13, 2014

*Peculate : To embezzle (funds) or engage in embezzlement.

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Englyn unodl union

Related Welsh Form are HERE.


The villancico hails from Spain, and is a (largely forgotten) forerunner of the villanelle. As with the villanelle, whole lines are repeated. In fact, whole couplets are repeated. There are three stanzas, and last two lines of the first and second stanzas are both repeated at the end of the third. Here’s an example, in the best possibletaste:
Ordure of the British Empire

Most frequent of our complaints
Is ignorance in the young.
Oftentimes my lady faints
When plain folk misname their dung,
But speak of otters’ spraints
And we’ll know you are sound.

On such small orthodoxies
Aristocracy is based.
Don’t know what “poo of ox” is?
You’re so common; you’ve no taste!
Waggyings of foxes –
That’s where breeding is found.

Badger’s werdrobe on the ground;
Hare’s crotels scattered around;
Wild boar’s fiants – Ha! You frowned!
You’re not gentry, I’ll be bound!
But speak of otters’ spraints
And we’ll know you are sound.
Waggyings of foxes –
That’s where breeding is found.

The rhyming scheme is quite demanding, with 6 of the 8 lines of the third stanza required to rhyme with one another. In the only other example I have seen, there is even more rhyming (so that the lines here ending in “based” and “taste” ought to rhyme with “complaints”), but I flashed my artistic licence and claimed exemption from that requirement. 7-syllable lines seem to be standard, except in the two refrains, which both use 6-syllable lines.
I haven’t seen a formal description of the villancico anywhere. Researching these obscure forms can be a frustrating business. According to various sources, the villancico is the Spanish equivalent of a madrigal, or of a carol, or primarily a musical form without lyrics. It is certainly not a verse form anyone is prepared to give an exact description of. (Except perhaps in Spanish – a language I don’t speak.) Any information would be gratefully received.
In this example, I am taking the mickey out of the vocabulary of field sports. (Not for the first time. I also have a poem called Table Manners – more popularly known as Frushing the Chub – which uses a selection of Elizabethan carving terms.) Back in the days of Empire, there was a specific word for virtually every attribute or behaviour of any animal species of interest to the aristocracy. The best known of these are probably the nouns of assemblage – murder of crows, exaltation of larks, murmurationof starlings, dopping of sheldrake, etc. Harmless pieces of trivia for pub quizzes nowadays, but once these were potent shibboleths – anyone who didn’t know the proper word for a hare’s droppings (see above) or the sexual antics of foxes (“clickitting”) was plainly not “one of us”. An authoritative book on the subject was written byEdward, Duke of York, first cousin to Henry IV.    

Pasted from http://www.volecentral.co.uk/vf/villancico.htm
My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource.

Specifications restated:

A stanzaic poem of 20 lines, 2 sestets plus and octet
Syllabic: The first four lines of each stanza are 7 syllable, the remainder 6 syllables
Rhymed: ababAC1 dedeDC2 ccccAC1DC2.
Refrains indicated by the Capital letters

My example

Let Us Prey  (Villancico)

A gift must have some appeal
before the intent can count.
Man can’t eat a godly spiel –
so take that into account.
What you give should be real,
It should fulfill a need.

An offer of warm French fries,
or a tattered coat to wear
may mean more to homeless guys
than assurance that God cares.
if your gift satisfies
Then you’ve done a good deed.

Gifts with strings attached are fraud
they’re for you – and that is flawed.
Such giving I can’t applaud;
even in the name of God.
What you give should be real,
It should fulfill a need.
if your gift satisfies
Then you’ve done a good deed.

© Lawrencealot – October 31, 2014

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Virelai Ancien

Viralai Ancien is a Medieval descendant of the Lai. It is long with very restricted rhyme. 

The is:
○ stanzaic, usually written in any number of 12 line stanzas made up of 4 tercets. Six or nine line stanzas can be used but according to Bob Newman anything less than 12 lines is for wimps.
○ syllabic, 8-8-4-8-8-4-8-8-4-8-8-4-8-8-4.
○ rhymed aabaabaabaab bbcbbcbbcbbc etc. The short line rhymes of the previous stanza become the long line rhymes of the next stanza. At the end, the long line rhymes of the 1st stanza becomes the short line rhyme of the last stanza.

Pasted from http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?/topic/686-lai-family-of-forms-lai-lai-nouveaukyriellebergeretteVirelai

My thanks to Judi Van Gorder for years of work on this fine PMO resource.


Virelai Ancien

The virelai ancien is a medieval form that has done well to survive this long, and is unlikely to be widely mourned if it doesn’t survive very much longer. Perhaps my feelings toward it would be more charitable if I hadn’t just forced myself to write one of the wretched things. This is how it turned out:
The Virelai Ancien

The virelai’s a lot of fun!
Of flavours, most forms have but one,
But it has two.
The ancient flavour first was spun
When time itself had just begun;
The world was new.
Some neolithic Tennyson
Beneath the prehistoric sun,
Who’d had a few –
The Muse struck him, and soon he’d done
A verse form that would run and run.
’Twas quite a coup!

He sang of hunting caribou;
Of making of it a ragout;
Of gluttony.
His whole tribe – later called the Sioux –
Went wild about this form’s debut,
Its subtlety.
A tidal wave of ballyhoo,
Of photo shoot and interview –
Celebrity –
Engulfed our hero ere he knew.
Then other bards tried to outdo
His minstrelsy.

It was a wondrous sight to see,
This verse form’s popularity –
They wanted more!
For there had been a scarcity
Of highly-structured poetry
There, theretofore.
The virelai’s complexity
Imparted a resplendency
None could ignore.
It spread by bush telegraphy
To Blackfoot, Crow, and Cherokee,
From shore to shore.

It didn’t last. A natural law
Of nature, red in tooth and claw
(Exemptions: none)
Ordains that, like the dinosaur,
Each species must in time withdraw,
Its race well run –
Though no Sioux critic, brave or squaw,
The virelai nouveau foresaw,
Or how it won.
And yet the ancien lost the war.
The Sioux don’t write them now, and nor
Does anyone.

As you see, you need rhymes literally by the dozen – each rhyme occurs 8 times in the long lines of one stanza, and 4 times in the short lines of the next (and the form loops back at the end, so that the short lines of the last stanza rhyme with the long lines of the first). You can have as many stanzas as you like, but personally I’d say four was enough for anybody. 
(Actually you’re allowed to have 9-line stanzas, or even 6-line stanzas, as long as you stick with the pattern of 2 long lines followed by a short one, and honour the rhyming scheme. But stanzas shorter than 12 lines are for wimps.)
In truth, the virelai ancien seems to me to be much more of a test of ones ability to find rhymes than a recipe for writing a good poem. But if you enjoy a challenge, go for it!

Pasted from http://www.volecentral.co.uk/vf/virelai_ancien.htm

My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource.

My example

Photo Shoot Recruit (Viralai Ancien)

We left a house of ill repute
where we’d produced a photo shoot
with maidens there.
We never sought forbidden fruit
(we were old farts and lacked the loot;
it wasn’t fair.)
One girl was blond and very cute
could have been Laura Vandervroot;
I could but stare.
Then we continued on our route,
where starlets longed for our salute;
they posed with flair.

So many of them were named Cher,
or Joy, Cherie, or even Claire
I got confused.
I viewed a many derriere
and ogled bosoms almost bare
and still perused.
A plain or ugly girl was rare
They all looked lovely in the glare
Their beauty oozed.
In evening gowns or under wear,
they paraded without a care.
I was bemused.

Then finally we were all excused.
When asked what kind of film I’d used
I said, “Aw,shoot!”
The roll of film had gone unused.
My boss was feeling unamused.
I got the boot.
Although I’m sore and slightly bruised
and thoughts of pay were disabused
d absolute
I certainly remain enthused
My camera can be re-used
so failure’s moot.

© Lawrencealot – August 28, 2014

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Virelai Ancien

Than-Bauk Poem

Than-Bauk Poem
Type: Structure, Metrical Requirement, Rhyme Scheme Requirement, Stanzaic
Description: This is an idea that takes the than-bauk and extends it by startng a new climbing (falling) rhyme sequence in the third, fifth, seventh, etc. lines.
Attributed to: Bob Newman
Origin: Burmese/English
xcxd, etc.

Pasted from http://www.poetrybase.info/forms/005/513.shtml

My thanks to Charles L. Weatherford for his years of work on the wonderful Poetrybase resource.

The THAN-BAUK POEM – poetic form attributed to Bob Newman – takes theTHAN-BAUK and extends it by startng a new climbing (falling) rhyme sequence in the third, fifth, seventh, etc. lines.

After a tedious internet search, I cannot see any definitive amount of lines required for the Than-Bauk Poem.


xcxd, etc.

where “x” is the syllable count, “a” through “d…. etc.” is the rhyme scheme
Example by Jacquii Cooke:

Free Than-Bauk

where the rain falls
the wind calls for
hail balls and rest
and the zest of
lights’ best lit way.
some kind slave runs
away from deep chains

Pasted from <http://jpicforum.info/threads/than-bauk-poem.809/>
With a big thank you to Jacquii Cooke

Since Bob was mute on the subject of poem length, I will assume it can be any number of odd-lines greater than three.

Related forms:  Than-Bauk, Than-Bauk Poem, YaDu,  Ya Hoo.

My example

Newman Renovation (Than-Bauk Poem)

Now Bob was bad
but I’m glad that
he had the thought
that we ought not
be caught upstairs.

Visual Template
Than-Bauk Poem

Song That Luc Bat

Song That Luc Bat
The Song That Luc Bat is another Vietnamese form. The name means double-seven six eight. The six-eight lines form a luc bat couplet, as above; this is preceded by a rhyming couplet of 7-syllable lines. (The Vietnamese are a delightfully wysiwyg people.) To chain stanzas together, the last syllable of each stanza should rhyme with the first two lines of the next. Three and a half stanzas of this can make a rather pleasant form (admittedly quite unknown to Vietnam), the Song That Luc Bat sonnet:
Making Tracks

Walking in new-fallen snow
I prefer always to go
Where none has trod before
To make my mark. The thaw will come;
Footprints must in time succumb
To Nature’s slow pendulum.
Till then my pugmarks stand,
And blaze a path, crisp and distinct,
On the whiteness darkly inked,
Individual, but linked.
Let others do the same –
But do not play this game to win.
You will lose when spring comes in.
The blanket of snow is thin.
If such things matter to you, you should note that this is not a sonnet at all, strictly speaking.

Pasted from http://volecentral.co.uk/vf/luc_bat.htm#Song%20That%20Luc%20Bat

My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource

My example

In Your Face Upper Case (Song That Luc Bat)

I was taught in forty-eight
poetry (to give it weight)
must have rules of its own.
Capitals must begin each line.

Kids absorb new rules just fine.
Rhyme and Caps thus did align
making poetic verse.
For me it was tautology.

Ten years later I would see
e. e. cumming’s poetry
and thought it was absurd.
Dogma disallowed that man’s style.

Lazy, I thought for a while,
scheme of poet to beguile,
and though he’s well acclaimed
still I’ve deigned to pass his work by.

Still don’t like it, but know why.
Change, when sensible, I try.
Upper case helps readers
when it falls where it ought to be.

It helped past type-setters see
Proper breaks for poetry.
Hence it helped all concerned.
Setting of type is now passé .

Now we’re free to have our say
aiding readers seems the way
capitals should apply.
They emphasize full-stops when used.

Still, their absence is abused
i, as me, can’t be excused
Dogma serves in lieu of
thought but bows at last to logic.

© Lawrencealot – August 21, 2014

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Song That Luc Bat

Short Particular Measure

Short Particular Measure
All the authorities seem to agree that this has 6-line stanzas rhyming aabaab, with syllable counts of 668668 (that’s 334334 in feet). Mysteriously, all the authorities then go on to give examples with syllable counts of 448448! On the assumption that what they say is more reliable than what they do, I offer this as an example of SPM:

He made the sheep and hogs;
He made the mice and frogs,
Our great Creator sempitern –
And us, and cats, and dogs.
So say our theologues:
One day to pasta we’ll return.

Pasted from <http://volecentral.co.uk/vf/measures.htm#Short%20Particular%20Measure>
My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource.

My example

Loosing It! (Short Particular Measure)

I’m really quite amused
when some words are misused
Since poets offered help one time
cannot be disabused
they cannot be excused.
Perhaps they ought to switch to mime.

© Lawrencealot – August 20 2014

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Short Particular Measure



Type: Structure, Metrical Requirement, Rhyme Scheme Requirement, Other Requirement
Description: A seven-couplet poem, the pleiadic’s first stanza is repeated piece-meal in the other six stanzas. Specifically, S2L1s1-4, S3L1s5-8, S4L1s9-10, S5L2s1-4, S6L2s5-8, and S7L2s9-10. There is some slight leeway in interpretation, for instance “-er” might become “her.”
Attributed to:Vera Rich
Rhythm/Stanza Length: 2
Line/Poem Length: 14

Pasted from http://www.poetrybase.info/forms/005/535.shtml
My thanks to Charles L. Weatherford for his years of work on the wonderful Poetrybase resource.


The pleiadic is a verse form devised by Vera Rich, so-called because of its seven stanzas. It looks like this:

My love is quite unlike a red red rose –
No thorns, a sweeter smell, a paler nose.
My love is quite immaculate; the sun
Shines from her every orifice, bar none.
I have been smitten, like a red-nosed clown
By custard pies; in sweetness, I may drown.
Each day I offer her a blood-red rose
Which she declines; each day my ardour grows.
The blooms she spurns would be the pride of Kew –
No thorns, a sweet perfume, a lush deep hue.
I can’t imagine what mistake I’ve made –
Perhaps a subtler smell, a paler shade?
I brandish blossoms everywhere she goes.
I wish I knew why she turns up her nose.
The highlighted parts of stanzas 2 to 7 together make up a repeat of the whole of the first stanza, with each part in turn appearing in the same position in the new stanza as it did in the first. Each line is in iambic pentameter, and the repeats cover respectively 4, 4, 2, 4, 4 and 2 syllables. That’s all there is to it…
Pasted from http://www.volecentral.co.uk/vf/pleiadic.htm
My thanks to Bob Newman for his wonderful resouce at Volecentral.

Not mentioned in either source above is the
Rhyme pattern: aabbccaaddeeaa

My example poem

Guy’s Lies (Pleiadic)

Can you believe I’ve never told a lie?
It’s all because my mem’ry’s bad, that’s why.

Can you believe I’m happy and content
Although each month my money’s mostly spent?

Forgetting lies I’ve never told someone
would be a bitch and probably not fun.

“Does this make me look fat?” Don’t tell a lie?
Tell her “Your hair looks splendid, sweetie-pie.”

Some people fib to be nice; that’s a fact.
It’s all because they’re exercising tact.

And if I get an answer wrong one day,
you know it’s ‘cus my mem’ry’s bad, okay?

I have few friends I’m not a tactful guy.
My wife has left me; could it be that’s why?
© Lawrencealot – August 17, 2014

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Copla de Arte Mayor

Copla de Arte  Mayor
The copla de arte mayor is a Spanish verse form. It’s an 8-line stanza rhyming abbaacca. Each line is of 12 syllables, with a specific metre. The stresses are on syllables 2, 5, 8 and 11 i.e. it is in amphibrachic tetrameter.

Don’t feed the troll!

Incontinent, ugly, destructive and smelly,
The troll is a loathsome and pitiful creature.
It lacks any pleasant or positive feature.
There’s hate in its heart and there’s bile in its belly.
You never should feed it – no, not on your Nelly!
It isn’t a candidate for conservation;
The world would improve with its elimination.
Let’s boot out the troll – go on, give it some welly!

I recently encountered a particularly unpleasant troll that took its pleasure from being abusive about other people’s poems. I feel better now, thank you.
Later: We have discovered that the troll was also a serial plagiarist.

Pasted from <http://volecentral.co.uk/vf/cdam.htm>
My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource.

My example poem

Mary Boren, Meter Maid (Copla de Arte Mayor)

When workshops of Mary’s were duly presented
attendees enhanced their own methods of writing.
Her critiques were kind, not demeaning or biting.
The participants found their skill sets augmented,
and friendships of poets therein were cemented.
No other impacted me more so than Mary
Her scansion of meter is extraord’nary.
Encounters with Mary will leave one contented.

© Lawrencealot – August 5, 2014

Visual Template
( a poem of 8 lines)

Copla de Atre Mayor

Burns Stanza

Burns Stanza is the current name of the form also known as the Standard Habbie, the Scottish Stanza, or the Six-Line Stave.

Standard Habbie

Type: Structure, Metrical Requirement, Rhyme Scheme Requirement, Stanzaic

Description: A stanzaic sestet with lines of two lengths and two rhymes. Lines 1, 2, 3, and 5 are four feet long with the “a” rhyme. Lines 4 and 6 are two feet long with the “b” rhyme.

Attributed to: Habbie Simson, the piper of Kilbarchan
Origin: Scottish
Schematic: Rhyme: aaabab

Meter (Iambic):

xX xX xX xX
xX xX xX xX
xX xX xX xX
xX xX
xX xX xX xX
xX xX

Pasted from http://www.poetrybase.info/forms/002/297.shtml
My Thanks to Charles L. Weatherford for his work on the wonderful poetrybase resource.

Burns Stanza

The Burns stanza is named after Scotland’s national poet Robert Burns (1759-1796). The form already existed before he made it his own; its old name was standard Habbie, after Habbie Simpson (1550-1620), the Piper of Kilbarchan, its earliest known exponent. (I have seen the spelling standart Habbie often enough to think that maybe it isn’t a misprint after all.) This form is also sometimes known as the Scottish stanza or the six-line stave.

Stanzas have 6 lines rhyming aaabab, the a lines having four feet each and the b lines two, something like this:

The Fire Brigade

Their uniforms are so divine,
A shiver tingles up my spine!
I swear I never saw so fine
A band of men.
Their mission: let nothing combine
With oxygen.

My heroes! For although each knows
The perils, through the fire he goes
Armed only with a rubber hose
With which he aims
His stream at all the reddest glows
To douse the flames.

Such gallantry! And yet he spurns
The prize his courage surely earns.
My ardour for his brave heart burns
And won’t extinguish.
I serenade him à la Burns
(Although in English).

The Burns stanza is an example of rime couée.

Notable Burns stanzas:

A great deal of Burns’ work, including To a Mouse, To a Louse, To a Haggis, etc. A nice modern example is W N Herbert’s To a Mousse.

Pasted from http://volecentral.co.uk/vf/burns.htm
My thanks to Bob Newman for his years of work on the wonderful Volecentral resource.

My Example

No Insomnia, the Fox

The foxes sleep without concern
then yawn and wake and take their turn
at foraging with time to burn;
and when they’re done
from all their worries they adjourn.
and just have fun.

I often wished that I could sleep
without a need for counting sheep
but having problems seems to keep
my mind awake
I’ve bills to pay and floors to sweep
for heaven’s sake.

The things the neighbor lady said
about another neighbor’s bread
(a cause for gustatory dread)
now interrupt
with thoughts of recipes instead
I can’t keep up.

Today I didn’t gas the car.
Tomorrow I can’t drive too far.
I’m meeting Bobby at the bar,
and with his dad!
Is that unusual? bizarre?
or is it rad?

I need to get my clothes all clean.
I’ll wash them in our new machine.
Perhaps I’ll cut down on caffeine.
And then I’ll doze
without the thinking in between,
do you suppose?

The foxes living near our yard
don’t think of debts or their bank card.
They don’t find sleeping very hard.
Live for today
is seemingly a fox canard;
can that be hard?

The foxes sleep without concern
then yawn and wake and take their turn
At foraging with time to burn;
and when they’re done
from all their worries they adjourn.
and just have fun.

The foxes sleep without a care,
their ears alert to what’s out there
detecting sounds with time to spare
and then they play.
It’s here and now, not when and where.
Let’s live today!

© Lawrencealot – August 4, 2014
Visual Template
(6 lines or multiple)
Burns Stanza

Ronsardian Ode

Ronsardian Ode
The Ronsardian ode (named after Pierre de Ronsard 1524-1585) is the only kind of ode that specifies a particular rhyming scheme – ababccddc, with syllable counts of 10, 4, 10, 4, 10, 10, 4, 4, 8. 
In the present rather windy economic climate, I thought an owed might be appropriate.
Owed to the Bank
I rue the day when I picked up the phone
(Connected then)
And asked them to advance me a small loan.
Never again!
The moment the transaction was arranged,
The pattern of my entire life was changed.
More than I’d guessed,
The interest
Mounts up. I must have been deranged.
Eleven thousand pounds I owe, they say.
That’s quite a debt.
I swear I’ll pay it back to them one day,
But not just yet.
Meanwhile I need a place to lay my head,
A jug of wine perhaps, a loaf of bread.
Then there’s my wife…
For normal life
Can’t stop because I’m in the red.
I’ve hardly slept since this nightmare began.
I lie awake,
Find fatal flaws in every single plan
I try to make –
But last night all my ideas seemed to gel.
I’ll find another job; all will be well.
A banking post
Will pay the most.
Why’s that? It’s not too hard to tell.
Ah, life as a teller. It’s a tempting thought. I think there should probably be a fourth stanza, but as yet there isn’t. Sorry.
I bought a book of Ronsard’s selected poems, and it didn’t include a single Ronsardian ode. So some further research may be called for.
Thanks to Bob Newman for his wonderful Volecentral resource site.
Cowleyan Ode or Irregular Ode, Horatian OdeKeatsian or English OdeRonsardian Ode
Thematic Odes:Elegy, Obsequy, Threnody Ode
Elemental Ode
Genethliacum Ode
Encomium or Coronation Ode
Epithalamion or Epithalamium and Protholathiumis
Palinode Ode
Panegyric or Paean
Triumphal Ode
Occasional Verse

My example poem
Ode to a Creek (Ronsarian Ode)
The little creek was built to irrigate
so men could farm.
Thus, daily men would rise to raise some gate
when days were warm.
Those summer days the creek would draw the boys
away from practiced games and silly toys
to share the breeze
with brush and trees
that lined the creek, contained their noise.
The larger boys had tied a swinging rope
on which we played
and dropped to take our daily bath sans soap,
quite unafraid.
When swing and drop became at last mundane
up to that branch we’d boldly climb again
into two feet
it seemed so neat,
we bore our scratches with disdain.
One fall they warned we could not swim nor fish
White poison flowed
and fish preceded it; to live their wish.
Death was bestowed
on parasites and all the mossy growth.
But all the neighbor boys I knew were loath
to think them right
when deadly white
killed life and our short season both.
When winter came a fragile sheet of ice
made young boys bold
for they could walk across it once or twice
when it was cold.
They’d taunt the older boys and wouldn’t care
how fast were bigger kids who’d chase them there.
The small ones knew
just what to do;
The bigs fell through most anywhere.
I cannot tell now where that creek had been;
growth needs, I guess.
New roads exist that hadn’t been there then,
such is progress.
That creek’s as gone as are my boyhood years.
but still the memories of it endears.
It served its roles
and other goals
before it bowed and disappeared.
© Lawrencealot – April 15, 2014

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