The words ‘ballad’ and ‘ballade’ are often used interchangeably primarily because speakers, including native English speakers and teachers of the English language, assume they mean the same – a narrative poem. The fact, nonetheless, is different. If you look up these words in a good dictionary, you will get distinct meanings, thus conveying that they are not just different from each other but poetically unique in their own way. It is worth mentioning that while ballads can fall under the free verse or fixed verse form of poetry, ballades solely belong to the fixed verse form. Furthermore, the latter has stricter rules than the former.
Fourteen nights he spent at the Himalayas great,
each night speaking about one world;
He touched topics good and bad, spoke at length of fate;
A ‘secret’ the last day unfurled.
‘We have our souls quite well covered
by a layer we all call body,’ he declared.
Then as if smitten by thoughts, roared:
Life’s uncertain, what matters is now, not how you fared.
The dad elated beamed with pride,
went ahead to make a point.
‘Your worth’s fixed at the right place,
and that’s my sole viewpoint.’