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> Byr a thoddaid., A Welsh verse form
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post Oct 30 03, 15:21
Post #1





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Byr a thoddaid
A Small Story

This measure combines the eight-syllable couplet with another type of couplet called toddaid byr. Toddaid byr consists of ten syllables, then six; in the ten-syllable line the main rhyme is found before the end, and the syllables that follow must be linked -- by alliteration, rhyme, or assonance -- with the early syllables in the six-syllable line.

Why do they make things sound so complicated?
This is actually quite challenging but enormous fun. Basically, the couplet lines are made up of eight syllables each. There is no meter, but there must be endrhymes
Thus
Dark is this maze wherein I err.
No Theseus I; no comforter,

Then we have two lines of different length. 10 and 6 syllables.
The eighth syllable forming an end rhyme
The last syllable echoes the first or second syllable. of the short line.

No Ariadne at my side, to hold
Her golden skein as guide


Put it all together.

Dark is this maze wherein I err.
No Theseus I; no comforter,
No Ariadne at my side, to hold
Her golden skein as guide




More examples later

A

 
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Guest__*
post Oct 30 03, 15:36
Post #2





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That's one verse of course. Put as many as you like together and form a story.

Here's one I prepared earlier (without sticky back plastic)

In Arthurís Halls

In Arthur's Halls there lived a maid
Her charm and modesty displayed
And favours given on a white pennant
proclaimed her gallant knight.

He took her colours to the list
Held tight within his ironed fist
While she kneeled down that she might pray to God
To grant her lord the day

He plied his sword and mighty lance
But came unhappy circumstance
His charger slipped and blood ran red and hot
Her hero lay there dead

And thus the maid in modest pose
Did sorrowful in her repose
Ensconce herself in widow's weed so black
Bereaved, bereft indeed.


Tom
 
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Guest__*
post Oct 30 03, 15:54
Post #3





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And one more, without the edit marks
This time, instead of alliteration I used rhymes.

Hiraeth
(Loosely translated 'homesickness')

My father said when I was young
That I should guard my mother tongue
But I was filled with arrogance and youth
In truth I failed his stance

I journeyed to a foreign land
Where welsh they did not understand
They cared not for that lilting luted voice
A choice I would refute.

Now Hiraeth bids me no more roam
My hills and valleys call me home
But I have no one there to share my speech
I reach out in despair.

Tom


Go to it.
I'll be asking questions later.
 
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Guest__*
post Oct 31 03, 02:06
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Dear Akh

"Then we have two lines of different length. 10 and 6 syllables.
The eighth syllable forming an end rhyme
The last syllable echoes the first or second syllable. of the short line."

and

"In Arthur's Halls there lived a maid
Her charm and modesty displayed
And favours given on a white pennant
proclaimed her gallant knight."

So we really have 4 x 8 syllables, with the 1st 2 of line 4 being displaced to the end of line 3, thus :

In Arthur's Halls there lived a maid
Her charm and modesty displayed
And favours given on a white
pennant proclaimed her gallant knight.

Have I missed some other great reason why this is a form worth pursuing ? Other than that it is Welsh ? That one is not liikely to move me much, the 2 biggest disasters in my stunted love-life were with 1/2 Welsh females. (Admittedly they were also 1/2 English ! LOL).

I'm not saying "Down with all form", like a certain friend of ours, merely, does this form produce enhanced communication, which is what poetry is all about ? It seems very artificial to no greater purpose.

Love
Alan
 
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JustDaniel
post Oct 31 03, 02:24
Post #5


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Well, Tom, here goes nothin'!

No Welching to Abet

No hedges here to bet upon
for aye, Iím but a simple pawn.
My eyes but wander all about thy board;
with sword laid down, I quit!


© Daniel J Ricketts 31 Oct 2003


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Athena
post Oct 31 03, 03:03
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Aha Thomas! †Thou hast begun anew to ply our wee brains with goot, goot thinking! † bowdown.gif

Your examples are a delight to read! †So many talents our wonderful people have here ... YEA! † dance.gif

Thank you so very much! †If you think of some others to introduce, I strongly encourage you to do so. †I doubt if I'll be trying this type soon, but perhaps one of the others some day. †Good to SEE you in here, Tom! † sun.gif

Blessings,
Dolly † †Pharoah.gif
 
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Michelle
post Oct 31 03, 03:34
Post #7


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O' Great One, † grinning.gif

I am wondering if this is the same form as yours:

Indeed it is Michelle. The staggered couplet forms an integral part of the verse.
toddaid byr

x x x x x x x A x b
(b x x) x x A

The Toddaid byr is a couplet which consists of a
decasyllabic line (or 10 syllable line, as the first in the
above) paired with a hexasyllabic line (or 6 syllable line
as the second line above.) The "A" position is the main
rhyme. The "b" position can be either...rhyme, assonance,
or alliteration, used in the second line in any of the 3
positions in parentheses. Rhymes, etc...in the next
couplet would go on to "C" for the main rhyme, and "d"
for the rhyme, assonance, or alliteration position.


I used these parameters to write a poem called Rite of Fall
that I have posted in Complex Critique and below:

Rite of Fall

Amber light burnishes her stately crown
then bows in awe to wait.
The sky enfolds her limbs in blue delight,
the height of doting hue.
Each day sheís more vibrant, dons red and gold,
behold, before itĎs shed.
At last her dance of leaves surrenders white,
the rite of fall must end.



Humbly kneeling,

Michelle † grinning.gif


Jolly good. The poem I mean, not the kneeling.huh.gif

Byr y Thoddaid literally means a small story. So you can use as many verses as you wish to tell the tale. Personally I think that the toddaid byr has a particular sonorous beauty that reflects the melancholy of gaelic nature

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Guest__*
post Oct 31 03, 03:45
Post #8





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Dear Michelle

Lovely poem.

But if I had to mess around counting how many syllables fit in with which rhyme/alliteration/assonance, either in reding it, or trying to write it, I'd get so stuck into the mechanics that any purpose of communication would be out the window.

These really ARE esoteric forms, ideal for Countdown viewers !

Love
Alan
 
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JustDaniel
post Oct 31 03, 08:04
Post #9


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Writer of: Poetry
Referred By:Lori



Hey, Michelle and Tom!

I really didn't think I'd try these, but you're really helping me ( I think! )

I believe I see the differences between the two, though they certainly are similar. †Tom, it surely would help (me, at least) if you could offer both a translation and a pronunciation of these Welsh forms. †Could you?

Here's my first attempt at the one Michelle suggested. I think it will be obvious to you both that It's my first attempt, and that it is indeed current:

The Left is Right; the Right is Left

Iíd found it hard to get around on knees
that need replacement (frown).
For fifteen years itís best to wait, said doc.
Just walk. I did; I slowed my gait.

There are some meds to ease the pain! †Thatís fair.
Compared to some, youíve no complaint.
Would you or others climb inside of me
and see, or will you chide?

As time grows shorter, so do I Ė more bow.
I know, Itís soon; the time will fly.
It has Ė a mere five weeks away. So soon!
One moon! †Iíll be displayed

as doc will show how straight heíll make this knee.
Weíll see! Itís no mistake:
Your left one used to be a fright. Thatís right.
Though trite, Whatís left ainít right.

But soon I will wake up and say, bereft,
Today the right has left.
The right's been wrong, but soon with greater height,
my gait should be all right.

© Daniel J Ricketts 31 Oct 2003


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Guest__*
post Oct 31 03, 08:11
Post #10





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Dear Daniel

I've no idea if this fits the form, and I will not spoil my pleasure in the words, brilliant as usual, by going back to the rules and checking you out.

I love it for what it is, a good communication !

Love
Alan
 
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Guest__*
post Oct 31 03, 11:20
Post #11





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I'm not saying "Down with all form", like a certain friend of ours, merely, does this form produce enhanced communication, which is what poetry is all about ? It seems very artificial to no greater purpose.

Och awae wi ye, ma braw wee laddie. D'y no ken that if this statement whur true, then Rabbie would still be fishing for haggis done by the Glasgie reeks !!

Here's one he didnae write. Nor David Little either.

An Acknowledgement of
Scottish Freedoms

With apologies to Scotsmen everywhere
Wee, sleeket, frightened, timorous beastie,
Cowering beneath a Scottish kilt
The English hang to left or right,
But thou can swing whereíere thou wilt.

While England sweats in underpants
In scorching Summerís searing heat
You sway, suspended, in the shade,
and ponder over passing feet.

Yet Freedom comes not cheaply;
There is a price to pay.
Wait till you meet the icicles
That come with Winterís day.

When Englishmen lie snug and warm,
Cocooned in cotton bed
Then , ken ye not ? St Michaelís wear
Would warm your freezing head.



Seriously though. This is a teaching forum. The Byr y Thoddaid is an exercise in form which can produce works of surprising beauty when applied properly. It has the same intellectual right to be here as, for example, a haikku. Indeed, more so in this case, as we are studying Welsh Poetry forms.

See you at the Eistedfodd. †:costume:

Tom
 
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Guest__*
post Oct 31 03, 11:35
Post #12





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Poor Daniel. If only you had persevered. †Jester.gif

You see, you walked away. If you'd perhaps stayed, even if it made you a little petulant, you would have got there

No hedges here to bet upon
for aye, Iím but a simple pawn.
My eyes but wander all about thy board;
with sword laid down, I quit!POUTlaugh.gif

But a jolly good effort for a first time.

Tom
 
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Guest__*
post Oct 31 03, 11:36
Post #13





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Dear Tom

You had me laughing so hard that my wife rushed to see what was going on. And she was in town at the time !

One nit :

You sway, suspended, in the shade,
and ponder over passing feet.

What kind of feet, Lomondic, or Trossachic, or even Nessic/Jurassic ?

And oh yes, it's Glasgae, not Glasgie ! Or it was when I lived there.

I was not disputing its right to exist, just stating that it seems like a lot of bardics to me !

Love
Alan
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Oct 31 03, 18:47
Post #14


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WOW~this thread is AWESOME!

I must admit that I didn't think I would be trying this form any time soon, however, I may reconsider. I LOVE a challenge!

Thanks all for the enlightment!

Hugaroooos!
~Cleo  :pharoah:


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Michelle
post Nov 2 03, 04:31
Post #15


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Tom, you make a wonderful god!  lol
Thank you so much for your explanation.
Your poems a marvelous!  Scottish Freedom
must be one of most entertaining reads.
Your god-hood is showing!  lol
I am working on a toddaid this week -
but am not getting far as the last few
days have been like a year in Hades.  lol
Perhaps tomorrow will be a better day.


Alan, thank you for the compliment.
To each their own, I suppose.  I have grown
very bored with free verse - it offers images -
no rhythm, no rhyme. Somewhat like fast food
compared to a home cooked meal.


Daniel, you've done a splendid job!
I'm pleased that you are trying and mastering
these forms.  Your wit shines with in a subtle
lasting light and is more lovely than other forms.  

May your operation be as painless
and successful as possible.

I personally find that bit of unevenness
inherent in the Welsh forms compliments
the uniqueness and exceptions
of being human, wherewith perfection
doesn't exist.  I like them.  lol
And I remember them - details in them
for some reason.  


Cleo, good to see you here!  
I'll watch for yours!




Michelle


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Guest_Artemis_*
post Nov 24 03, 21:04
Post #16





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When Michael first donned sequined mitt
his virtue shone through dance, and wit
he sang of chastity, shunning the fight
Tonight, Neverland stands silent


(hows that for a start?)

I had to try one of these.. and may try more. It's just 'esoteric' enough to intrigue me!

Besides, while I'm not quite HALF Welsh (sorry Alan!) I do have some celtic blood in me. †My paternal grandfather was Welch (which we assumed was a welsh name.. I've heard though, that our surname denotes Welsh that migrated to Ireland) My maternal grandfather was also of Welsh descent, partly. †So.. I was drawn to the 'WELSH" factor!

gena
ps. I still don't really understand why Michael Jackson inspires me so much!
 
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Guest__*
post Nov 25 03, 09:04
Post #17





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Hello Dolly Wall.gif
There! It had to be said. †laugh.gif

There's an old joke in Wales. It centres on our neighbours, the English, and your comments just up there, above me, reminded me.
The difference between the Irish and the Welsh is that the Irish learned to swim earlier. †laugh.gif

Now for this Byr y Thoddaid of yours.

The couplet is fine
Then we need five feet, followed by three feet.
The last line has to carry forward the sonic echo, and the endrhyme has to match the eighth syllable (stunning).
The sonic echo brings it all together, as you can see, but then it has to be punched home. Six syllables.

When Michael first donned sequined mitt † 8
his virtue shone through dance, and wit † †8
he sang of chastity, shunning the fight † †10
Tonight, Neverland stands silent† † † † † † † 8

My effort is a bit clumsy

When Michael first donned sequined mitt †8
his virtue shone through dance, and wit † 8
he sang of chastity, shunning the fight † 10
Tonight, Jacko's running. † † † † † † † † † † † 6



Tom.

.
 
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Guest_Artemis_*
post Nov 25 03, 11:07
Post #18





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Ah, TOM!

Somehow I missed part of the instructions.. It went completely over my little Welsh head.. I didn't see that the eighth syllable of that 3rd line had to form an endrhyme with the 4th.

But.. ain't it amazin' that I gave you 'shunning', which so very conveniently rhynmes with running!


(you can be sure I won't make THAT mistake again!)


gena
ps.. don't get it about the 'hello dolly'!?
 
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Guest__*
post Nov 25 03, 15:02
Post #19





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ps.. don't get it about the 'hello dolly'!?

I'm not surprised that you don't get it.

I was commenting on a post from our Athena/Dolly,
and I joked that I would never say Hello Dolly when answering her threads.

So I said it on yours in lieu.

Freudian slip.

Sorry Gena.

Hugz
Archibald. †laugh.gif

God, these pseudonyms get confusing sometimes. †Jester.gif

Hugz anyway
 
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Guest_Artemis_*
post Nov 25 03, 19:30
Post #20





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I was about to chastize you, because Artemis and Athena are such very, very different goddesses.. but fortunately, I went to check out my so-called facts...

And, while we are different, we do have some commonalities.  As anyone who knows Artemis knows.. I am the goddess who is protective of animals, and children.. and I wear fur and skins, and carry a bow and arrow.  Don't mess with Artemis, because Artemis does not take things lightly....

Athena is known for domesticity.. yet she is also known as the Goddess of War.

In other words, step lightly around us both!

gena
artemis
 
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