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Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Naturally I fell prey to Bob's wit as I started to document the
Quartina, and mis-wrote it as the more natural and mundane Quatrina.
Well, that has been rectified.

Structure, End Word Requirement
The four-line stanza version of the sestina with the typical end-word enfolding.
Attributed to:
Bob Newman
12 / 34
Rhythm/Stanza Length:
Line/Poem Length:

Thanks to Charles L. Weatherford

Another variation for which I accept full responsibility is the quartina.  This uses the same idea as the sestina but only has 4 keywords, hence is only 18 lines long. Here's one:

This is the day when we shall see the moon
Dispute the morning sky; usurp the sun;
Beshroud the world in unaccustomed dark.
We know this - and we know it won’t last long.
This is the day; the wait will not be long
Until we’re on the dark side of the moon.
Unseen by us, our life-giver, the sun,
Will impotently rage against the dark.
The birds, lulled into silence by the dark,
Will tuck heads under wings - but not for long.
Two minutes only, this night of the moon,
Before the sky is reclaimed by the sun.
Though there is nothing new under the sun,
All seems new at the dying of the dark.
A second full dawn chorus, loud and long
Will celebrate the passing of the moon.
Don’t worry when the moon obscures the sun.
Although the day be dark, it won’t be long.
I chose the name "quartina" so that I could write flawed ones. 
© Bob Newman 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007. All rights reserved

My thanks to Bob Newman for his wonderful resource site.

My Example Poem
Do You Suppose?     (Quartina)

A girl well knows what means a rose
when she can get one from a man.
Of course she might prefer a Porsche;
the goal then might be mistress role.

If rolling in the hay's your role
I don't suppose you need a rose.
If much elan defines your man
Of course one might expect a Porsche

It's never coarse to own a Porsche
or take control of your own role,
but heaven knows a red, red rose
might show the game-plan of a man.

I really can picture a man
who owns a horse, but not a Porsche
with plenty soul for either role
who might propose with just one rose.

So take the rose and love the man
forget the Porsche and part-time role.

© Lawrencealot - January 8, 2013

Visual Template
This is a Quartina ( in iambic tetrameter with added internal rhyme)

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