Friday, August 01, 2003

The Rap of Luke Reese

Here's my attempt at rime royal (iambic pentameter, rhyme scheme: ababbcc . . . More difficult to write than blank verse for me:

From Deptford on the Strand, in desperate haste,
Borne by the end of hope in Christian kings,
Near-death, Kit Marley, so he’d not be chased,
Was sent to France on diplomatic wings,
In a small boat with only a few things.
Since sins of his had got him into trouble,
He had to leave the country on the double.

It happened that the names of atheist,
Blasphemer, sodomite, and such, were down
By Marley’s name on Bishop Whitgift’s list,
Because the poet made the prelate frown,
With speeches on the stage and in the town
In taverns drinking ale, proposing toasts
And jests against the Christ, for which he’d roast.

maybe readers can suggest revisions or additions to my incipient mini-epic: The Rap of Luke Reese. (apparently Luke is a heretofore totally obscure 16th C. poet whom I channel on weekday evenings during prime-time television commercials.)

All 265 stanzas of Rape of Lucrece can be downloaded and read here.

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