Sestina

The Sestina is one of the most challenging forms of fixed-form verse that is still being actively developed by poets worldwide. The sestina finds its origins back as far as the 12th century troubadour ballads of Arnaut Daniel, and the form was brought to maturation in the writings of Dante and Petrarch. It is a structured form consisting of six stanzas, each containing six lines each, wrapping up with a 3-line “envoi”.

This form gets interesting when you add the requirement of repetitive rotation of the end words of each line in a stanza. In diagram form it looks like this:

1. ABCDEF
2. FAEBDC
3. CFDABE
4. ECBFAD
5. DEACFB
6. BDFECA
7. (envoi) ECA or ACE

We are opening up this new area on BN~ to explore this traditional form in expressions by new voices. We are proud to be accepting submissions to keep this tradition active and alive.

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