IN-FORM POET WEDNESDAY – MINNESANG
In our constant effort to expand your horizons and challenge your minds, I have uncovered another form that may be new (or unheard of) but dates back to days of old when knights were bold.
The MINNESANG (Middle High German – minne = love) is a courtly love poem. But it was usually depicting unrequited love. The verse was cultivated by the nobility, and often built around the theme of a brave knight’s attempt to court a lady who doesn’t return his favor.
The Minnesang was meant to be sung but the melodies were not well documented and mostly only lyrics are left.
The defining features of the Minnesang are:
- stanzaic, written in uniform stanzas although the number of lines in the stanza per poem is variable, sixains were popular.
- metric, often iambic tetrameter with the last line of each stanza a longer Germanic line (Long lines written in a minimum of 7 metric feet, Accentual meter and often composed as 2 short lines in 1 usually separated by caesura) , iambic heptameter or octameter.
- rhymed, variable rhyme schemes were used, ababcc was common another was abbcaa .
See Poetry Magnum Opus: http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?showtopic=1900
MARIE ELENA’S EXAMPLE:
JUNIOR HIGH IS NOT FOR THE WEAK OF HEART
You’d speak my name, my heart would pulse and pound.
Your smile made my own grow wider still.
I had to force my feet to stay aground,
A grueling task, for how to mask my thrill?
I had a crush on you, as crushes go.
You gave me notice, but you had no desire to be my beau.
Your eyes were focused on my friend Elaine,
You wanted me to point her to your heart
I did your bidding, though it caused me pain
You took my heart, and yanked it all apart.
I’m sure you didn’t realize how it hurt
I never revealed my crush. I’d never learned to flirt.
Copyright © – Marie Elena Good – 2012
LADY FAIR NOT THERE
I used to think this kind of love
was like a game of give and take.
It seems to me you need a shove,
that tells me that’s my first mistake.
So I stand here, my head is bowed,
my heart is covered quite completely by this heavy shroud.
I never thought that love would die,
but I’ve been wrong a time before.
It saddens me, my fervent cry
has cut so deeply to my core.
And so we’re through, if you can’t tell.
I wish to say quite frankly dear, that you can go to hell!
Copyright © – Walter J. Wojtanik 2012
Robert Lee Brewer’s prompt is up as well. He asks us to write a “sudden” poem. Can you write a sudden Minnesang? Hmmm ….