UKArchive ID: 35477

An Awkward Situation
by ionicus
Originally published on September 18, 2015 in Poetry    

An experimental piece in the Chant Royal form written after reading “Archie is one Psycho Ex” by gwirionedd. It is a difficult style to master and rather drawn out. Since it originated in France in the 14th century and was introduced into England in the 19th, it may be old fashioned and impractical.

The Chant Royal is a poetic form that is a
variation of the ballad form and consists of
five eleven-line stanzas with a rhyme scheme
a-b-a-b-c-c-d-d-e-d-E and a five-line envoi
rhyming d-d-e-d-E or a seven-line envoi
c-c-d-d-e-d-E. To add to the complexity,
no rhyming word is used twice.


I thought that she was spoiling for a fight
when hurling insults she slapped my face.
That blow had the strength of dynamite
and immediately I knew I was in disgrace.
I wondered why she was in such a state;
perhaps it was because I came home late.
I tried to explain but it wasn’t any use,
she was quite determined to blow a fuse
and was adamant I was having an affair.
There was no way she’d accept my excuse.
Did I ever tell you that life is so unfair?

Trying hard to make her forget the slight
I wanted to grasp her in a warm embrace
and have vigorous sex throughout the night
but she had already packed a big suitcase
as it was her firm intention to emigrate.
I begged her to stay and asked her to wait
so that we could calmly talk and call a truce
yet what I received in return was only abuse.
My aim all this time was to clear the air
but she was at best purblind or else obtuse.
Did I ever tell you that life is so unfair?

I did not want my girlfriend to lose sight
of the fact that a total breakup would erase
all our cherished memories, out of spite,
and of our relationship there’d be no trace.
I had never seen my beloved so irate
since I nearly stood her up on the first date.
If she left me I’d have to live like a recluse
or, alternatively , embark on a luxury cruise
where on the upper deck I’d lounge in a chair
with nothing to do but largely snooze.
Did I ever tell you that life is so unfair?

I feared that her repressed anger might
force her into demanding a breathing space
and in so doing she’d feel within her right
although that attitude would debase
the long standing friendship with her mate
who’d much prefer a discussion more sedate
than her ramblings that were very profuse.
Her fallacious arguments were too abstruse
but she delivered them with a great flair.
I’d been unjustly accused but I stayed loose.
Did I ever tell you that life is so unfair?

There is nothing I can do now: she took flight;
I am too upset and don’t want to give chase.
She deserted me, regardless of my plight,
displaying bad manners and lack of grace.
To be quite honest I am not feeling great
and to other women I cannot yet relate;
perhaps it is due to indulging in booze
– ideally I should stick to pure orange juice –
I have erotic dreams about a Swedish au-pair
the first woman in a line that I’d like to seduce.
Did I ever tell you that life is so unfair?

I’m slowly recovering from the initial bruise
and new emotions are replacing the blues;
the sexual urges are more than I can bear,
perversely my ex is the one I would choose.
Did I ever tell you that life is so unfair?

© Luigi Pagano 2015

© ionicus (Ionicus on OLD UKA)

UKArchive ID: 35477
Archived comments for An Awkward Situation

shadow on 19-09-2015
An Awkward Situation
Wow! That is brilliant. How do you manage to keep it up? (The rhyme scheme I mean). I tried to write a sonnet once – nearly killed me.

Author’s Reply:
It wasn't easy to maintain the rhythm and the rhyming scheme but with some concentration and a lot of doggedness I managed to get to the end. Judging by the number of comments I received priory to yours,

you seem to be the only one who had the stamina to read it to the end and I am grateful that you did.

Now I know that my marathon hasn't been in vain. Thanks.

Luigi x

deadpoet on 19-09-2015
An Awkward Situation
I was fascinated by this – it is brilliant Luigi- you are a master poet.

Pia xx

Author’s Reply:
Nearly missed your comment, Pia. Thrilled that you liked this and hazard a guess that it was you who nominated it. Thanks very much,

Luigi xx

gwirionedd on 26-09-2015
An Awkward Situation
For an old man you don't half have a fiery libido, Luigi!

Anyway, well done on the chant royal. I notice you set yourself the task of a five-stanza version, which is extremely difficult in English. It would be easier in French or Italian, I think.

My one is a three-stanza version. Three is enough, I think. But if you want to put another hill on top of the hill, then go for it!

Author’s Reply:
Archie, I try my hardest to keep it up to scratch and that's just my writing. I found the form quite difficult to implement and now I learn that my task could have been easier. I blindly followed the description which mentioned five stanzas. That will teach me not to take things too literally. I am not likely to attempt another chant royal, or a sestina for that matter. So from now on let's sing something simple. Your poem was terrific and inspired me to follow your example.

Best wishes, Luigi.