Imaginary Gardens with real Toads, http://withrealtoads.blogspot.com/2011/10/da-iawn.html, asks us to write a cywydd llosgyrnog: a Welsh poem of any number of stanzas. Each stanza has a strict meter, containing two eight-syllable couplets and two seven-syllable interlacing rhymes on the third and sixth lines. The third and sixth lines also rhyme with one another. The syllable/rhyme scheme looks like this:
Cross-rhyme can shift between 3rd and 5th syllables.
Even though I can’t pronounce “cywydd llosgyrnog,” perhaps there is some Welch blood dripping from this heart of mine. I know I feel at home with this form.
When cannons roar, a country needs
the men to whom courage exceeds
beyond deeds of mortal man.
When valor calls beyond the pale
and through the nights the women wail,
hearts inhale what fears they can.
When men stand up for their belief
they do not cry for pain’s relief.
Rest is brief and hard to find.
Among the wounded, weary souls,
there is a force that love controls,
from death’s tolls, life is consigned.
Take up the sword your brother dropped
and fight with will ‘til evil’s stopped.
Free men opt to face the war.
Pick up the flag, proudly waved,
and hold it o’er a country saved.
‘Til what’s craved is held once more.