“So if all do their duty, they need not fear harm”, proclaimed the Queens herald.
But they all knew the truth. They would come to harm whether they did their duty or not. The only difference lay in how quickly the harm would come. The Queen cared not for their life. She didn’t give a thought to her subjects coming to harm.
The only things she cared about was her wealth prospering, her power growing, her legacy and legend spreading, her monuments to rise and compete with the ancient marvels of the world. Hers would be the biggest temple, the highest tower, the grandest tomb.
Little did she suspect, hers would be the most spectacular assassination. Thought out and plotted by the greatest minds of the country. Impaled by the sacrificial bull. Crushed by falling marble. Interred in the fallen tower of follies.
The explanation below is offered from several online sources, which seem to be attributed most often to Rhina P. Espaillat:
…the “ovillejo,” an old Spanish verse form that means “tight little bundle.” “-ejo” is one of our blessed diminutives, and “ovillo” means “tangled ball of yarn.” The last line is a “redondilla,” a “little round” that collects all three of the short lines. The rhyme scheme is established, but the meter is at the poet’s discretion, although in Spanish the longer lines tend to be octosyllabic (8 syllables).
The ovillejo is an old Spanish form popularized by Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616). This 10-line poem is comprised of 3 rhyming couplets (or 2-line stanzas) and a quatrain (or 4-line stanza).
The first line of each couplet is 8 syllables long and presents a question to which the second line responds in 3 to 4 syllables–either as an answer or an echo.
The quatrain is also referred to as a redondilla (which is usually a quatrain written in trochaic tetrameter) with an abba rhyme pattern. The final line of the quatrain also combines lines 2, 4, and 6 together.