A Canzone written for Alessandra da Montereggioni by Aneleda Falconbridge
Qual donna attende a gloriosa fama
di senno, di valor, di cortesia? *
Gather and hear, noble people of the Mighty East, of a Lady so kind that Petrach himself would have searched for words, one of such bliss as is seldom seen walking these low and mortal paths.
To those who love service, and too, chivalry,
we speak of a lady, and give our rationale
Of a spirit generous, of great morale
held in high esteem by all who are her friend.
We see this golden creature all around us
extending gentle hand with most noble grace
toward any task requested in this dear place
to see it through no matter how far its end.
She brings the new and kindly helps them to blend
in the crowd of brewers, dancers, sewers, cooks,
and shares the wondrous knowledge gained from her books
Her encouragement lights the paths many wend.
With golden threads she has sewn us up with love,
It is with sad joy we set free this sweet dove.
Thus it is the will of ever-right and kind King Gryffith and our resplendent and gentle Queen Aikaterine that Alessandra da Montereggioni becomes a Lady of our Court this day, the fifth day of the month of love, Anno Societatis forty-five, at the King and Queen’s Bardic Champions in the fair Shire of Endewearde.
(Italian translation) *Doth any maiden seek the glorious fame Of chastity, of strength, of courtesy? – Petrarch
Notes about the piece:
This canzone is written with 11 syllables per line, based on a style used by Dante, who wrote of Montereggioni. Seemed like a good idea at the time…
The scheme is as follows:
I found these suggestions online:
First two lines: Define your subject and how you will speak with the reader
Second two lines: Convey the central theme, question, or conflict.
Third set of lines (broken into a quatrain): Convey your mood, sentiment, and stance
“Derived from the Provençal canso, the very lyrical and original Italian canzone consists of 5 to 7 stanzas typically set to music, each stanza resounding the first in rhyme scheme and in number of lines (7 to 20 lines). The canzone is typically hendecasyllabic (11 syllables). The congedo or commiato also forms the pattern of the Provençal tornado, known as the French envoi, addressing the poem itself or directing it to the mission of a character, originally a personage. Originally delivered at the Sicilian court of Emperor Frederick II during the 13th century of the Middle Ages, the lyrical form was later commanded by Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio, and leading Renaissance writers such as Spenser (the marriage hymn in his Epithalamion).” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canzone)