I tried QEMU on my faster desktop today and it seems to be working very well. I have virtual machines for both 98SE and Win 95A that I made for VL 5.8. I just copied the container files to my VL 5.9. They serve my rather limited needs, so I think I'll stick with them.
kqemu is not running, but the speed on the Athlon 64 X2 is very decent. I *may* try loading kqemu as an experiment, but I may leave well enough alone in the spirit of "if it ain't broke, don't fix it."
It's possible that the problems I had on the other computer were due to insufficient muscle for running a virtual machine.