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Poetry Forms A - N. For reference

Poetry Forms

Types of poetry forms

Bref Double

Iambic pentameter
Luc Bat
Terza Rima

If there are any forms of poetry that you cannot find here, just submit a Blog to that effect and we will see what we can do

Poetic Forms “A”

Poetic Forms A – Alliteration, Assonance and Consonance: Edited

Please bear with this as it will take some time before A – Z can be completed.
Feel free to critique this lot and to add a replacement of what you think should be here, then I will Edit this into a useful Blog…
“ABC poem”
An ABC poem has 5 lines that create a mood, picture, or feeling.
Lines 1 through 4 are made up of words, phrases or clauses – and the first word of each line is in alphabetical order from the first word.
Line 5 is one sentence, beginning with any letter.
” Accent”
The prominence or emphasis given to a syllable or word.
In the word poetry, the accent (or stress) falls on the first syllable.
Simple Acrostics:-
Eclipsed by no other in this universe of heaven
Around and around it goes, to be seasonal
Rhythm of life’s cycle, day and then day again
Time to slow, but a rotation of age to be
Help her, as much as we have misused her wealth

Africa my birth place as man was born
Ants so busy they just keep me warm
Roaming the bush from mound to mound
Delving with tounge deep underground
Velvet termites a great soft feast for me
Aware of the others, hurry up, I must flee
Remember me, and let me plant my seed
Keep us safe from this extinctions greed
The first letter of each piece spells the name
For the word puzzle, see Acrostic (puzzle).
An acrostic (Greek: ákros “top”; stíchos “verse”) is a poem or other form of writing in which the first letter, syllable or word of each line, paragraph or other recurring feature in the text spells out a word or a message.
As a form of constrained writing, an acrostic can be used as a mnemonic device to aid memory retrieval.

Relatively simple acrostics may merely spell out the letters of the alphabet in order; such an acrostic may be called an ‘alphabetical acrostic’ or Abecedarius.
Notable among the acrostic Psalms are the long Psalm 119, which typically is printed in subsections named after the letters of the Hebrew alphabet, each of which is featured in that section; and Psalm 145, which is recited three times a day in the Jewish services.
Acrostics are common in medieval literature, where they most commonly serve to highlight the name of the poet or his patron, or to make a prayer to a saint.
They are most common in verse works but can also appear in prose.
Often the ease of detectability of an acrostic can depend on the intention of its creator.
In some cases an author may desire an acrostic to have a better chance of being perceived by an observant reader, such as the acrostic contained in the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili (where the key capital letters are decorated with ornate embellishments), or as in the poem.
To Doctor Empiric (by Ben Jonson) which is a verse outlined after the word W-O-L-F giving emphasis to, and capitalizing the key letters so such acrostic is relatively easier to discern.
However, acrostics may also be used as a form of steganography, where the author seeks to conceal the message rather than proclaim it.
This might be achieved by making the key letters uniform in appearance with the surrounding text, or by aligning the words in such a way that the relationship between the key letters is less obvious.
This is referred to as null ciphers in steganography, using the first letter of each word to form a hidden message in an otherwise innocuous text.
Using letters to hide a message, as in acrostic ciphers, was popular during the Renaissance, and could employ various different methods of enciphering, such as selecting other letters than initials based on a repeating pattern (equidistant letter sequences), or even concealing the message by starting at the end of the text and working backwards.
The classic mnemonic device for remembering planets is a well known example.
Take the first letters of each planet in order and make a sentence with them as the first letters of each word.
Although slightly modified of late it still works.
There is a classic example of acrostic poem in English written by Edgar Allan Poe is entitled simply
“An Acrostic”
Elizabeth it is in vain you say
“Love not” — thou sayest it in so sweet a way:
In vain those words from thee or L.E.L.
Zantippe’s talents had enforced so well:
Ah! if that language from thy heart arise,
Breath it less gently forth — and veil thine eyes.
Endymion, recollect, when Luna tried
To cure his love — was cured of all beside —
His follie — pride — and passion — for he died.
It was while calling one day upon Mrs. Bremer that Lewis Carroll scribbled off the this double acrostic on the names of her two daughters,
Trina and Freda
Lewis Carroll wrote this unique double acrostic for Gertrude Chataway.
The verses embody her name in two ways — by letters, and by syllables
In Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking-Glass, the final chapter “A Boat, Beneath A Sunny Sky” is an acrostic of the real Alice’s name: Alice Pleasance Liddell.
A boat, beneath a sunny sky
Lingering onward dreamily
In an evening of July -
Children three that nestle near,
Eager eye and willing ear,
Pleased a simple tale to hear -
Long has paled that sunny sky:
Echoes fade and memories die:
Autumn frosts have slain July.
Still she haunts me, phantomwise,
Alice moving under skies
Never seen by waking eyes.
Children yet, the tale to hear,
Eager eye and willing ear,
Lovingly shall nestle near.
In a Wonderland they lie,
Dreaming as the days go by,
Dreaming as the summers die:
Ever drifting down the stream -
Lingering in the golden gleam -
Life, what is it but a dream?
Contained in A Calendar Acrostic is another example where the initial letters spell out the months of the year:
JANet was quite ill one day.
FEBrile trouble came her way.
MARtyr-like, she lay in bed;
APRoned nurses softly sped.
MAYbe, said the leech judicial
JUNket would be beneficial.
JULeps, too, though freely tried,
AUGured ill, for Janet died.
SEPulchre was sadly made.
OCTaves pealed and prayers were said.
NOVices with ma’y a tear
DECorated Janet’s bier.
In October 2009, a letter from the office of Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Governor of California to the State Assembly was found to contain an acrostic.
In this case, the initial letters of each line in the letter spelled the words “Fuck you”. A spokesman for the Governor called the incident coincidental.
Similar tactics were used in 2001 by Stephen Pollard to conceal the message “Fuck you, Desmond” in a Daily Express article.
In January 2010, Jonathan I. Schwartz, the CEO of Sun Microsystems, sent an email to Sun employees on the completion of the acquisition of Sun by Oracle Corporation.
The initial letters of the first seven paragraphs spelled “Beat IBM”
James May’s hidden message
James May, presenter on the BBC program Top Gear, was fired from the publication Autocar for spelling out a message using the large redinitial at the beginning of each review in the publication’s Road Test Yearbook Issue for 1992.
Properly punctuated, the message reads: “So you think it’s really good? Yeah, you should try making the bloody thing up. It’s a real pain in the arse.”
Multiple acrostics
Acrostics can be more complex than just by making words from initials. A double acrostic, for example, may have words at the beginning and end of its lines, as this example, on the name of Stroud, by Paul Hansford -
Set among hills in the midst of five valleyS,
This peaceful little market town we inhabiT
Refuses (vociferously!) to be a conformeR.
Once home of the cloth it gave its name tO,
Uphill and down again its streets lead yoU.
Despite its faults it leaves us all charmeD.
This example can be considered a more complex form of acrostic.
“ Allegory”
Allegory is a narrative having a second meaning beneath the surface one.
“ Alexandrine”
Did you know that an Alexandrine is a line of poetry that has 12 syllables and derives from a medieval romance about Alexander the Great that was written in 12-syllable lines?
“ Alliteration”
The repetition of the same or similar sounds at the beginning of words such as tongue twisters like ‘She sells seashells by the seashore’
“ Analogy”
Analogy is a likeness or similarity between things that are otherwise unlike.
“ Anapaest”
A metrical foot of three syllables, two short (or unstressed) followed by one long (or stressed). The anapaest is the opposite of the dactyl.
Alliteration is the repetition of consonants within words in close proximity. Alliteration generally refers to sounds at the start of a word. Here are two literary examples:
Beowulf was written in Old English and contains many lines of alliteration:
feasceaft funden; he þæs frofre gebad,
weox under wolcnum, weorþ-myndum þah
In the first line, the letter ‘f’ is used in repetition, and the same with ‘w’ in the second line.
In Gerard Manley Hopkins’s “Pied Beauty”:
Glory be to God for dappled things…
Landscapes plotted and pieced—fold, fallow and plough;
And áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim.
The letter “g” is used in repetition in the first line, “p” and “f” in the second line, and “t” in the third line.
In one more example, Shakespeare parodies alliteration in Peter Quince’s Prologue in A Midsummer Night’s Dream:
Whereat, with blade, with bloody blameful blade,
He bravely breach’d his boiling bloody breast.
An example of antithesis is “To err is human, to forgive, divine.” by Alexander Pope is an example of antithesis with words and phrases with opposite meanings balanced against each other.
“ Apostrophe”
A figure of speech in which someone absent or dead or something nonhuman is addressed as if it were alive and present and could reply
“Arabic Classical”
See also: Arabic prosody
The metrical system of Classical Arabic poetry, like those of classical Greek and Latin, is based on the weight of syllables classified as either “long” or “short”.
A short syllable contains a short vowel with no following consonants.
For example, the word kataba, which syllabifies as ka-ta-ba, contains three short vowels.
A long syllable contains either a long vowel, or a short vowel followed by a consonant as is the case in the word maktūbun which syllabifies as mak-tū-bun.
These are the only syllable types possible in Arabic phonology which, by and large, does not allow a syllable to end in more than one consonant or a consonant to occur in the same syllable after a long vowel. In other words, with very few exceptions, syllables of the type -āk- or -akr- are not found in classical Arabic.
Each verse consists of a certain number of metrical feet (tafā`īl or ajzā’) and a certain combination of possible feet constitutes a meter (baħr.)
The traditional Arabic practice for writing out a poem’s meter is to use a concatenation of various derivations of the verbal root F-`-L
Thus, the following hemistich
qifā nabki min dhikrā ħabībin wamanzilī
Would be traditionally scanned as
Fa`ūlun mafā`īlun fa`ūlun mafā`ilun
Which, according to the system more current in the west, can be represented as:
u– u— u– u-u-
Arabic Meters
Classical Arabic has sixteen established meters. Though each of them allows for a certain amount of variation, their basic patterns are as follows, using “-” for a long syllable, “u” for a short one, “x” for a syllable that can be long or short and “o” for a position that can either contain one long or two shorts:
• Archetype
Archetype is the original pattern from which copies are made.
• Assonance
The repetition or a pattern of similar sounds, as in the tongue twister “Moses supposes his toeses are roses.”
Assonance is the repetition of vowel-sounds within non-rhyming words.
In Poe’s, ‘Bells’ he uses assonance of the vowel ‘e:’
Hear the mellow wedding bells.
Assonance of the vowel ‘u’ used by Robert Louis Stevenson:
The crumbling thunder of seas
Poetry forms “B”
Posted on March 8, 2012 by Yenti
• Ballad
Ballad Poems
Ballad is a poem that tells a story similar to a folk tale or legend and often has a repeated refrain.
In England the ballad form can be traced back to the Middle Ages.
The traditional ballad has been imitated by literary writers since the eighteenth century.
Traditional ballads were composed to be sung. Authors were not known.
Many ballads feature elements of loyalty, the supernatural, comedy and fantasy.
Ballads are fairly short narrative poems usually in quatrains (four-line stanzas).
Ballad Form
The second and fourth lines of each verse rhyme.
Line one has 8 beats.
Line two has 6 beats.
Line three has 8 beats.
Example of Ballad Poems
MARy HAD a LITtle LAMB – 4 beats
its FLEECE was WHITE as SNOW – 3 beats
and EVeryWHERE that MARy WENT – 4 beats
the LAMB was SURE to GO. – 3 beats
Now have a go.
• Ballade
A type of poem, usually with three stanzas of seven, eight, or ten lines and a shorter final stanza of four or five lines.
All stanzas end with the same one-line refrain.
• Bard
The definition of a Bard is a Gaelic maker and signer of poems.
• Blank verse
Blank verse is in unrhymed iambic pentameter which is a type of meter in poetry, in which there are five iambs to a line.
Poetry that is written in unrhymed iambic pentameter.
Blank verse is often unobtrusive and the iambic pentameter form often resembles the rhythms of ordinary speech.
Shakespeare wrote most of his plays in blank verse..
1. The quality or state of being brief in duration.
2. Concise expression; terseness ________________________________________
[Latin brevit s, from brevis, short; see brief.]
brevity [ˈbrɛvɪtɪ]
n pl -ties
1. conciseness of expression; lack of verbosity
2. a short duration; brief time
[from Latin brevitās shortness, from brevis BRIEF]
the practice of conciseness in speech or writing.
laconism, laconicism
1. the practice of using few words to say much.
2. a laconic utterance. — laconic, n., adj. — laconical, adj.
Rare. the speaking of few words; taciturnity or brevity. — pauciloquent, adj.
syntomy, syntomia
Rare. brevity; conciseness.
the brief, sometimes cryptic language used in telegrams.
See Also: TIME
1. As compact as a drop of pure water —Richard E. Shepard, New York Times, November 3, 1986
The simile attempts to explain the mystery of the Flamenco Puro dance troop’s creative wellsprings.
2. Brief as a classified ad —Anon
3. Brief as a drop of dew —Cale Young Rice
4. Brief as a grouch’s smile —Anon
5. Brief as a sinner’s prayer —Anon
6. Brief as a twinge —Margaret Atwood
7. Brief as the Z column in a pocket dictionary —Irvin S. Cobb. Or, to be even more specific, “Brief as the Z column in this dictionary.”
8. Brief as youth in retrospect —Elyse Sommer
9. (Smiled) briefly, on and off like a light switch —Gavin Lyall
10. Concise as a telegram —Elyse Sommer
11. Short as any dream —William Shakespeare
12. Short, clear as a bird-note, trailing away —E. B. White
• Burlesque
Burlesque is a story, play, or essay, that treats a serious subject ridiculously, or is simply a trivial story

Poetry forms “C”
Posted on March 8, 2012 by Yenti
• Canzone
A medieval Italian lyric poem, with five or six stanzas and a shorter concluding stanza (or envoy). The poet Patriarch was a master of the canzone.
• Cacophony
Lewis Carroll makes use of cacophony in ‘Jabberwocky’ by using an unpleasant spoken sound created by clashing consonants.
• Caesura
A grammatical pause or break in a line of poetry (like a question mark), usually near the middle of the line.
Another component of a verse’s meter are the caesurae (literally, cuts), which are not pauses but compulsory word boundaries which occur after a particular syllabic position in every line of a poem. In Latin and Greek poetry, a caesura is a break within a foot caused by the end of a word.
For example, in the verse below, each odd line has a caesura (shown by a slash /) after the fourth syllable (daily, her, won’dring, mother) while each even line is without a caesura:
Daily, daily, / sing to Mary,
Sing my soul her praises due:
All her feasts, her / actions honor,
With the heart’s devotion true.
Now in wond’ring / contemplation,
Be her majesty confessed;
Call her Mother / call her Virgin,
Happy Mother, Virgin blest.
A caesura would split the word “devotion” in the fourth line or the word “majesty” in the sixth line.
• Carpe diem
A Latin expression that means “seize the day.” Carpe diem poems have the theme of living for today.
• Cinquain
A cinquain has five lines.
Line 1 is one word (the title)
Line 2 is two words that describe the title.
Line 3 is three words that tell the action
Line 4 is four words that express the feeling
Line 5 is one word that recalls the title
• Classicism
The principles and ideals of beauty that are characteristic of Greek and Roman art, architecture, and literature.
Examples of classicism in poetry can be found in the works of John Dryden and Alexander Pope, which are characterized by their formality, simplicity, and emotional restraint.
Cinquain poems
These came from Adelaide Crapsy in 1911, who developed her own poetic system, which she called Cinquain.
These were short unrhymed poems consisting of twenty-two syllables. They were distributed into 2, 4, 6, 8, 2 syllables in five lines.
• This type of poetry was related to Japanese literary styles.
Examples of cinquain poetry:
Chubby, cheerful
Waiting, grinning, winking
Icy weather keeps him smiling
Talking, caring, sharing
Taking and giving all at once
Best pals
How to write cinquain poems:
• Line one: Decide on one word title (noun).
• Line two: Choose two words that describe your title (adjective).
• Line three: Choose three words that tell you something that the title can do (verb).
• Line four: Choose a four word phrase that describes a feeling about your title.
• Line five: Think of one word that refers back to your title (synonym).
Round, Smooth
Tossing, Flipping, Shining
Make A Special Wish
Now have go at writing a cinquain poem.
Think about seasons (Autumn, Winter, Spring, Summer), or special events (Christmas, Diwali, Easter).
The principles and ideals of beauty, minimised by the use of emotional restraint, that are characteristic of Greek and Roman art and literature used by poets such as John Dryden and Alexander Pope.
Compliment Form
Introduction to and explanation of the Compliment form of poetry
The Compliment form is written in blank verse (non-rhyming) and consists of:
A trimeter title that introduces the piece
Five lines of tetrameter that describe the situation
an end line of trimeter that resolves the situation or poses a question.
The Compliment form is a subset of Passion Poetry. Passion Poetry seeks to describe a moment or emotion as it relates to two individuals without treading into the realm of lust.
Additionally, the compliment should be broad enough that those unrelated to the situation can make an immediate connection to the situation described. This will require more abstract and less specific descriptions.
Concrete Poem Form
Concrete poetry or Size poetry is poetry in which the typographical arrangement of words is as important in conveying the intended effect as the conventional elements of the poem, such as meaning of words, rhythm, rhyme and so on.
It is sometimes referred to as visual poetry, a term that has evolved to have distinct meaning of its own, but which shares the distinction of being poetry in which the visual elements are as important as the text.
The term was coined in the 1950s. In 1956 an international exhibition of concrete poetry was shown in São Paulo,
Two years later, a Brazilian concrete poetry manifesto was published. One of the earliest Brazilian pioneers, Augusto de Campos, has assembled a Web site of old and new work , including the manifesto. Its principal tenet is that using words as part of a specifically visual work allows for the words themselves to become part of the poetry, rather than just unseen vehicles for ideas. The original manifesto says:
Concrete poetry begins by assuming a total responsibility before language: accepting the premise of the historical idiom as the indispensable nucleus of communication, it refuses to absorb words as mere indifferent vehicles, without life, without personality without history — taboo-tombs in which convention insists on burying the idea.:
Although the term is modern, the idea of using letter arrangements to enhance the meaning of a poem is an old one.
This style of poetry originated in Greek Alexandria during the 3rd and 2nd centuries BC. Some were designed as decoration for religious art-works, including wing-, axe- and altar-shaped poems..
Submitted by scribbler
Summer days, moisture’s haze, thunder brays, lightning’s laze
sun goes, thunderhead grows, windows close, wildlife knows
hard wind,trees bend, warnings send, picnic’s end
pouring rain, loud refrain, hail’s pain
river’s gain. house shakes
bough breaks
drowns snakes
knee quakes
rains slack
clouds wrack
blue crack
sun’s back
cool blows, run-off flows, storm goes, rainbows
That the complete form cannot be shown as the page set up will not take it. If we can find one that fits feel free to send it to me in PM..
• Conceit
An example of a conceit can be found in Shakespeare’s sonnet “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”
When an image or metaphor likens one thing to something else that is seemingly very different.
• Consonance
Consonance is the repetition, at close intervals, of the final consonant sounds of accented syllables or important words.
Consonance is the repetition of consonant sounds within words. Consonance is very similar to alliteration, but the distinction between the two lies in the placement of the sounds.
If the repeated sound is at the start of the words, it is alliteration.
If it is anywhere else, it is consonance. In most cases, consonance refers to the end sound (like “nk” in blank and think
Consonance in ‘The Silken Tent’ by Robert Frost:
‘as in guys she gently sways at ease’
Comparing Alliteration, Assonance and Consonance:
There is an example of all three of these terms in one line of the poem, “The Raven,” written by Edgar Allan Poe:
And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
This line clearly contains all three, and can show the difference between assonance, consonance and alliteration.
Assonance is the repetition of the ur sound in ‘purple’ and ‘curtain.’
Consonance is the repetition of the s sound within ‘uncertain’ and ‘rustling.’
Alliteration is the repetition of the s sound at the start of ‘silked’ and ‘sad.’
These terms are very closely related, though the distinction between them comes in determining vowels versus consonants, and then placement within the words.
• Connotation
Connotation is what a word suggests beyond its basic definition.
The words childlike and childish both mean ‘characteristic of a child,’ but childlike suggests meekness and innocence
• Couplet
Shakespearean sonnets usually end in a couplet and are a pair of lines that are the same length and usually rhyme and form a complete thought.
A couplet has rhyming stanzas each made up of two lines. Shakespearean sonnets usually end in a couplet.
By Jim
Many members have said that they don’t feel that they have the necessary skills or education or experience to give a good critical review of someone else’s poem.
I have practised, instead.
Everyone is naturally a critic.
“This tastes horrible”
“I loved that movie!”
“This store is way too expensive.”
“I hate this feeling.”
“I like walking in the rain.”
Sound familiar?
With poetry, you just need to be a bit more detailed, and thoughtful, in your answers.
Here’s a guideline:
1. Always say “in my opinion” (imo), especially when critiquing the poem of an author that you have never spoken to before.
2, Never critique the content of a poem, just the poem itself. Is the poem very religious? Does it support a political view that you find offensive? Is the poem on a subject you don’t like? Don’t bring your personal feelings into it, just tell the author about what you find wrong (or good) with the poem itself.
3. Start by saying something good about the poem you want to critique, even if it is just “Hey you, I like this poem”, or “This is a good one”.
Now of course you’ll find some poems that simply cannot be praised in any way, shape or form. With these, you need to be polite, but firm in your conviction. DON’T ignore the poem because it is bad. Particularly if it’s written by someone that you know can do a better job. If you ignore it, it won’t get better.
“I’m sorry, but you can do better than this.” or “This would improve a great deal if you would…” these statements work fine; polite and matter-of-fact.
But, whenever possible, find something good to say!
4. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind. It doesn’t matter if you have no formal training.
Guess what? <<looks around and whispers>> neither do I.
Don’t be insulting towards the author, but make your position on the merits or failings of the poem clear, and make it simple.
5. How does the poem “flow”. Does the poem stop and start, are there lines that
get past
cannot (like these)
in the poem without hesitating, or stumbling, because the meter or rhyme suddenly aren’t there, the pacing is different, or the grammer or syntax don’t make sense? Tell the author of your problem with that. Let them know why you feel the way you do about that particular line.
6. Don’t be scared. Many of us start out thinking that authors will be offended by our opinions about their poems, and so we don’t critique.
Some will be offended, that cannot be avoided.
If they are and they say so, simply reply that you are sorry that they feel that way, and move on. It’s like selling something by telephone: the salesman never takes rejection personally, he just goes on to the next call, knowing that somewhere ahead is a sale. But when you do find someone who is grateful for your comments, and changes their poem in an effort to make it better, its very satisfying. Remember too that this is a workshop, a place for poets to improve their skills. You’ll find those that do want to get better, all you have to do is try.
7. Start with criticising the poem of someone that you know, or someone that you know will not be offended. All you have to do is read the comments of others, to know who these people are. But don’t fall into the rut of ONLY critiquing those you know won’t be offended. Give everyone the benefit of the doubt, and assume that they WANT help until they prove otherwise.
8. PRACTISE PRACTISE PRACTISE. Critiquing is like any other form of written expression: if you don’t do it, you won’t get better. It really is as simple as that.
So, are you ready to start giving criticism?
With many thanks to Jim…

Poetic Forms “D”
Posted on March 8, 2012 by Yenti
A metrical foot of three syllables, one long (or stressed) Followed by two short (or unstressed), as in happily.
The dactyl is the reverse of the anapaest.
Denotation is the basic definition or dictionary meaning of a word.
Dialect refers to pronunciation of a particular region of a Country or region.
Doggerels are a light verse which is humorous and comic by nature.
Ekphrastic Poem
Are you having trouble thinking of a topic for your poem?
Consider ekphrastic poetry.
An ekphrastic poem is a reaction to someone else’s art.
Follow these steps to create a poem that can enhance the experience of art by exploring it in a different medium.
things you’ll need:
Writing materials
A work of art to study
Start by checking out some examples of ekphrastic poetry.
Find a work of art that brings out strong feelings in you.
You could like it, hate it, think it’s funny or have just about any feeling you can imagine as long as you want to write about it.
Take down notes of your reactions to the art you chose for your subject.
You could focus on what you think the art depicts, how it makes you feel.
How it would make your reader feel or some combination of those.
Begin to organize your notes into poetic language. Look for ways to paint a picture with your words so your reader will be able to see your subject and feel the feelings you associate with it.
Decide the form of your poem.
All poems have a form, whether they follow definite rules or not.
Read more:-
How to Write an Ekphrastic Poem | eHow.com

Poetry Forms “E”
Posted on March 8, 2012 by Yenti
A sad and thoughtful poem lamenting the death of a person.
An example of this type of poem is Thomas Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard.”
Elision refers to the leaving out of an unstressed syllable or vowel, usually in order to keep a regular meter in a line of poetry for example ‘o’er’ for ‘over’.
Enjambment comes from the French word for “to straddle.”
Enjambment is the continuation of a sentence form one line or couplet into the next and derives from the French verb ‘to straddle’.
An example by Joyce Kilmer is
‘I think that I shall never see/A poem as lovely as a tree’.
If a poet allows all the sentences of a poem to end in the same place as regular line-breaks, a kind of deadening can happen in the ear, and in the brain too, as all the thoughts can end up being the same length. Enjambment is one way of creating audible interest; others include caesurae, or having variable line-lengths.
Mimi Khalvati’s ‘Don’t Ask Me, Love, For That First Love’ shows enjambment in its various strengths;
The second line, ending at the same time as the sentence, is completely end-stopped, but “What had summer / to do with sorrow in full spate?” is fluidly enjambed.
However, the pause for the comma at the end of the fifth line means that the enjambment is less pronounced here.
The poet’s skill with enjambment is one of the ways in which she keeps her short-lined stanzas, rhymed abab, from jangling unsophisticatedly..
“ Enjambment” (enjambement; Fr.)
This has something fundamentally in common with the game of chess.
It is one of those unique things in poetry that may be explained, understood and used in a matter of moments, yet on further investigation reveals a concept one could consider a lifetime and never quite get it right.
The word itself in French is translated loosely as straddling as one might a fence or a principle.
Simply put it is the continuation of a thought from one line (a single line in poetry is called a verse)to the next without a syntactic break.
The linguistic opposite of enjambment is referred to as end stop. A caesura is a pause in the middle of a verse and sometimes considered a form of end stop, though the opposite of caesura is not enjambment.
Confused yet?
You will be.
In prose, a comma, or semi colon are separations between two parts of a clause, phrase or sentence and as such are grammatical rejoinders patching these pieces together. In poetry they create an end stop.

A thing of beauty is a joy forever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing. (Keats)

The first and last lines above are end stops, the other three are enjambed. The chief criterion is this- the first line may stand alone.
Like the dominant clause of a two part sentence, this line may exist and make sense by itself.
Line three cannot stand alone without being nonsense. It must have the lines above and below to be understood.
The separation between the lines are line breaks.
Enjambment occurs when a thought “straddles” the line break.
Generally the purposes of enjambment are twofold.
Firstly it allows a thought that cannot artfully be contained within a single verse to expand and second, used judiciously, it increases the pace of a poem.
Enjambment is used extensively in free verse to create a more conversational feel to a poem, but even in more traditional modes it is regularly credited with minimizing the sing song effect of some classical formats.
To a certain extent enjambment delays to the next line a point that is being elucidated by the two verses, thus adding an element of surprise or momentary confusion that may be resolved quickly.
One of the hidden dangers in enjambment is the inadvertent creation of run-on sentences.
Now it gets a little harder.
Although enjambment has been utilized for centuries in such classical forms as the sonnet and the terza rima (among many others), it often interferes with structured meter in unpredictable ways.
Regardless of two lines of poetry being able to scan appropriately for the style of poem they are written, they may not flow together well from one line to the next.

Poetic scholars often argue that it is the vowel sound beginning the enjambed line that presents the problem and that a consonantal sound will carry the enjambment more adequately within the meter as this piece by E. E. Cummings loosely demonstrates.
“no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) I want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you.”
However, this is indeed an ongoing “argument” and generally there are no set rules as to why some initial words enjamb and why some will not.
The concept is quite subjective.
What one poet hears is not necessarily what another will.
It is in my mind a quirk of language and something that must be heard and not seen.
I leave this discussion with a poem that uses enjambment to reasonably decent effect.
The poet’s name I give at the end.

Sitting in his seat, a seat broad and broken
In, sprinkled with ashes,
Pop switches channels, takes another
Shot of Seagrams, neat, and asks
What to do with me, a green young man
Who fails to consider the
Flim and flam of the world, since
Things have been easy for me;
I stare hard at his face, a stare
That deflects off his brow;
I’m sure he’s unaware of his
Dark, watery eyes, that
Glance in different directions,
And his slow, unwelcome twitches,
Fail to pass.
I listen, nod,
Listen, open, till I cling to his pale,
Beige T-shirt, yelling,
Yelling in his ears, that hang
With heavy lobes, but he’s still telling
His joke, so I ask why
He’s so unhappy, to which he replies…
But I don’t care anymore, cause
He took too damn long, and from
Under my seat, I pull out the
Mirror I’ve been saving; I’m laughing,
Laughing loud, the blood rushing from his face
To mine, as he grows small,
A spot in my brain, something
That may be squeezed out, like a
Watermelon seed between
Two fingers.
Pop takes another shot, neat,
Points out the same amber
Stain on his shorts that I’ve got on mine, and
Makes me smell his smell, coming
From me; he switches channels, recites an old poem
He wrote before his mother died,
Stands, shouts, and asks
For a hug, as I shink, my
Arms barely reaching around
His thick, oily neck, and his broad back; ’cause
I see my face, framed within
Pop’s black-framed glasses
And know he’s laughing too.
Barack Obama
The shorter final stanza of a poem, as in a ballade.
Literary Terms
A long, serious poem that tells the story of a heroic figure.
Two of the most famous epic poems are the Iliad and the Odyssey by Homer and the epic poem of Hiawatha
A very short, satirical and witty poem usually written as a brief couplet or quatrain.
The term epigram is derived from the Greek word epigramma, meaning inscription.
The epigram was cultivated in the late sixteenth and seventeenth centuries by poets like Ben Jonson and John Donne
An epitaph is a commemorative inscription on a tomb or mortuary monument written in praise of a deceased person.
Epithalamium (or Epithalamion)
A wedding poem written in honour of a bride and bridegroom.
An epithetis a descriptive expression, a word or phrase expressing some quality or attribute.
Euphony refers to pleasant spoken sound that is created by smooth consonants such as “ripple’.
Euphemism is the use of a soft indirect expression instead of one that is harsh or unpleasantly direct.
For example ‘pass away’ as opposed to ‘die’

Poetic Forms “F”
Posted on March 8, 2012 by Yenti
Free verse (also vers libre)
Poetry composed of either rhymed or unrhymed lines that have no set fixed metrical pattern or expectation.
Free verse is poetry that is written without any rules about form, rhyme, rhythm etc:
In free verse the writer makes their own rules, by deciding how the poem should look, feel and sound.
Free verse in English has been around since King James Bible, especially the Psalms and the Song of Solomon.
Writing free verse became an in important and widespread movement in poetry.
In the twentieth century, free verse became the dominant mode of poets writing in English.
Example of Free Verse
Running through a field of clover,
Stop to pick a daffodil,
I play he loves me, loves me not,
The daffy lies, it says he does not love me!
Well, what use a daffy
When Jimmy gives me Roses?
by Flora Launa
The rhythm of free verse varies throughout the poem. Though the words don’t rhyme, they flow along in their own uneven pattern.
Without set rules, you are free to decide where to break your poem into stanzas.
You may arrange your poem in stanzas of two or more lines.
This poetry form is for someone who likes to march to a beat of a different drummer!
Falling Meter
Trochaic and dactylic meters are called falling meters because they move from stressed to unstressed syllables.
• Feminine rhyme
A rhyme that occurs in a final unstressed syllable: pleasure/leisure, longing/yearning.
Figure of speech
A verbal expression in which words or sounds are arranged in a particular way to achieve a particular effect .
Such as alliteration, antithesis, assonance, hyperbole, metaphor, onomatopoeia and simile.
Two or more syllables that together make up the smallest unit of rhythm in a poem.
For example, an iamb is a foot that has two syllables, one unstressed followed by one stressed.
An anapest has three syllables, two unstressed followed by one stressed.
In most Western classical poetic traditions, the meter of a verse can be described as a sequence of feet.
Each foot being a specific sequence of syllable types — such as unstressed/stressed (the norm for English poetry) or long/short (as in most classical Latin and Greek poetry).
Lambic pentameter, the most common meter in English poetry, is a sequence of five iambic feet or iambs.
Each consisting of an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed one (“da-DUM”) :
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.
This approach to analyzing and classifying meters originates from ancient Greek tragedians and poets such as Homer, Pindar, Hesiod, and Sappho.
Note that some meters have an overall rhythmic pattern to the line that cannot easily be described using feet.
This occurs in Sanskrit poetry; see Vedic meter and Sanskrit meter). (Although this poetry is in fact specified using feet, each “foot” is more or less equivalent to an entire line.)
However, it also occurs in some Western meters, such as the hendecasyllable favoured by Catullus, which can be described approximately as
“DUM-DUM-DUM-da-da-DUM-da-DUM-da-DUM-da”, with some variation allowed in the first two syllables.
Form is the generic term for the organising principle of a literary work. In poetry, form is described in terms elements like rhyme, meter, and stanzaic pattern.
A Japanese poem composed of three unrhymed lines of five, seven, and five syllables. Haiku reflects on some aspect of nature.
History of Haiku Poems
A haiku poem consists of three lines, with the first and last line having 5 moras, and the middle line having 7.
A mora is a sound unit, much like a syllable, but is not identical to it.
Since the moras do not translate well into English, it has been adapted and syllables are used as moras.

Poetry Forms G-N

Submitted by Ian.T on Thu, 2013-05-16 09:00

Poetry Forms “G”

Will check for these

Poetry Forms “H”

Haiku started out as a popular activity during the 9th to 12th centuries in Japan called “tanka”.
It was a progressive poem, where one person would write the first three lines with a 5-7-5 structure, and the next person would add to it a section with a 7-7 structure.
The chain would continue in this fashion.
So if you wanted some old examples of haiku poems, you could read the first verse of a “tanka” from the 9th century.
The first verse was called a “hokku” and set the mood for the rest of the verses.
Sometimes there were hundreds of verses and authors of the “hokku” were often admired for their skill.
In the 19th century, the “hokku” took on a life of its own and began to be written and read as an individual poem.
The word “haiku” is derived from “hokku”.
The three masters of “hokku” from the 17th century were Basho, Issa, and Buson.
Their work is still the model of haiku writing today.
They were poets who wandered the countryside, experiencing life and observing nature, and spent years perfecting their craft.
Examples of Haiku Poems
Basho Matsuo is known as the first great poet of Haiku.
Remember that in translation, the moras won’t be the same as syllables.
In Japanese, there are 5 moras in the first and third line, and 7 in the second, following the 5-7-5 structure of haiku.
Here are three examples of his haiku poems:
An old silent pond…
A frog jumps into the pond,
splash! Silence again.

Autumn moonlight—
a worm digs silently
into the chestnut.

Lightning flash—
what I thought were faces
are plumes of pampas grass.

Here are three haiku from Kobayashi Issa :-

O snail
Climb Mount Fuji,
But slowly, slowly!

Trusting the Buddha, good and bad,
I bid farewell
To the departing year.

Everything I touch
with tenderness, alas,
pricks like a bramble.

Three examples of the haiku of Yosa Buson are offered here:-

A summer river being crossed
how pleasing
with sandals in my hands!

Light of the moon
Moves west, flowers’ shadows
Creep eastward.

In the moonlight,
The color and scent of the wisteria
Seems far away.

Natsume Soseki lived from 1867 – 1916.
He was a novelist and master of the haiku.
Here are a couple of examples of his poems:-

Over the wintry
forest, winds howl in rage
with no leaves to blow.

The crow has flown away:
swaying in the evening sun,
a leafless tree.

Recent Poems
Following are some recent examples of haiku poems:-

Falling to the ground,
I watch a leaf settle down
In a bed of brown.

A cricket disturbed
the sleeping child; on the porch
a man smoked and smiled.

I’m turning over
look out and give me room there
you cricket, you.

Half-lines Form

In place of using feet, alliterative verse of old Germanic languages such as Old English and Old Norse divided each line into two half-lines.
Each half-line had to follow one of five or so patterns, each of which defined a sequence of stressed and unstressed syllables.

Typically with two stressed syllables per line.

Unlike typical Western poetry, however, the number of unstressed syllables could vary somewhat.

For example, the common pattern “DUM-da-DUM-da” could allow between one and five unstressed syllables between the two stresses.
The following is a famous example, taken from The Battle of Maldon:-

Hige sceal þe heardra, || heorte þe cēnre,
mōd sceal þe māre, || swā ūre mægen lȳtlað
(“Will must be the harder, courage the bolder,
spirit must be the more, as our might lessens.”)

In the quoted section, the stressed syllables have been underlined.
(Normally, the stressed syllable must be long if followed by another syllable in a word.
However, by a rule known as syllable resolution, two short syllables in a single word are considered equal to a single long syllable.
Hence, sometimes two syllables have been underlined, as in hige and mægen.)
The first three half-lines have the type A pattern “DUM-da-(da-)DUM-da”, while the last one has the type C pattern “da-(da-da-)DUM-DUM-da”, with parentheses indicating optional unstressed syllables that have been inserted.
Note also the pervasive pattern of alliteration, where the first and/or second stress alliterate with the third, but not with the fourth.


A line of poetry that has seven metrical feet.

Heroic couplet

A stanza composed of two rhymed lines in iambic pentameter.


A line of poetry that has six metrical feet.
Literary Terms


Hyperbole (overstatement) is a type of figurative language that depends on intentional overstatement.

Poetry Forms “I”


is a foot that has two syllables, one unstressed followed by one stressed.

“Interlocking Rubáiyát”

An “Interlocking Rubáiyát” is a Rubáiyát where the subsequent stanza rhymes its 1st, 2nd, and 4th lines with the sound at the end of the 3rd line in the stanza (Rubá’íyah) before it.
In this form, the 3rd line of the final stanza is also rhymed with the 3 rhymed lines in the first stanza.
This leads to a form like this example with three stanzas;
note that the Rubáiyát” is allowed an unlimited number of stanzas, so extend the pattern as needed:
a – 2nd line rhymes with the first.
a – 4th line rhymes with the first and second.
b – 1st line rhymes with the third in the previous stanza.
b – 2nd line rhymes with the first.
b – 4th line rhymes with the first and second.
c – 1st line rhymes with the third in the previous stanza.
c – 2nd line rhymes with the first.
a – 3rd line rhymes with the first in the opening stanza.
c – 4th line rhymes with the first and second.

Idiom refers to words, phrases, or patterns of expression. Idioms became standard elements in any language, differing from language to language and shifting with time.
A current idiom is ‘getting in a car’ but ‘on a plane’.
Idyll, or Idyl
Either a short poem depicting a peaceful, idealized country scene, or a long poem that tells a story about heroes of a bye gone age.
Imagery draws the reader into poetic experiences by touching on the images and senses which the reader already knows.
Irony is a situation, or a use of language, involving some kind of discrepancy.
An example of this is ”Water, water everywhere but ne’er a drop to drink’.

Jargon refers to words and phrases developed by a particular group to fit their own needs which other people understand
A metrical foot of two syllables, one short (or unstressed) and one long (or stressed).
The lamb is the reverse of the trochee.
Iambic pentameter
Shakespeare’s plays were written mostly in iambic pentameter, which is the most common type of meter in English poetry.
It is a basic measure of English poetry, five iambic feet in each line.

Poetry forms “J”

Jargon refers to words and phrases developed by a particular group to fit their own needs which other people understand

Poetry Forms “L”


A lay is a long narrative poem, especially one that was sung by medieval minstrels called trouvères.

A short sometimes bawdy, humorous poem of consisting of five anapaestic lines. Lines 1, 2, and 5 of a Limerick have seven to ten syllables and rhyme with one another.
Lines 3 and 4 have five to seven syllables and also rhyme with each other.
Need to find out more about Limericks ?
Limericks were used in Nursery Rhymes and other poems for children.
Limericks have been traced back to the fourteenth century English history.
The word Limerick comes from the Irish town of Limerick.
The content of Limericks is often bawdy and humorous nature.
A Limerick as poetry is simple and short, as Limericks only have five lines.
Limerick – The form
Limerick consists of five anapaestic lines.
Lines 1, 2 and 5 of Limericks have 7-10 syllables and rhyme with one another.
Lines 3 and 4 of Limericks have 5 -7 syllables and rhyme with each other.
Examples of Limericks
The following limericks by Edward Lear from A Book of Nonsense:
There was an Old Man with a beard,
Who said, ‘It is just as I feared!
Two Owls and a Hen,
Four Larks and a Wren,
Have all built their nests in my beard!’
There was an Old Man in a tree,
Who was horribly bored by a Bee;
When they said, ‘Does it buzz?’
He replied, ‘Yes, it does!’
‘It’s a regular brute of a Bee!’
Now have a go at writing your own limerick.
You could write about your best friend, your pet, your teacher or any member of your family.
No reflection on Mean Bee,

A poem, such as a sonnet or an ode, that expresses the thoughts and feelings of the poet.
The term lyric is now generally referred to as the words to a song.
A litote is a figure of speech in which affirmative is expressed by the negation of the opposite.
“He’s no dummy” is a good example.

Poetry Forms “M”

A metaphor is a pattern equating two seemingly unlike objects.
An examples of a metaphor is ‘drowning in debt’.


Meter is the rhythm of poetry as determined by the way words are pronounced normally in English, this does allow for regional and dialect variations.
Meter is not about counting syllables, it is about counting Feet.
A foot is two or three syllables of which one is stressed.
The repetition of feet creates meter.
The number of feet per line defines the metric form.
The most common forms of feet are iambic, anapaestic, trochaic and dactylic and we will discuss them all.
The number of feet per line are named with Greek numeric prefixes (monometer, dimeter, etc.).
We will go up to five feet per line (pentameter).
Just about everyone has heard of iambic pentameter.
It has been popular since Shakespeare and Chaucer.

Iambic pentameter

is a line of five iambs
da DUM da DUM da DUM da DUM da DUM
An iambic foot is an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable. The rhythm can be written as:
da DUM

The da-DUM of a human heartbeat is the most common example of this rhythm.

A standard line of iambic pentameter is five iambic feet in a row:
da DUM da DUM da DUM da DUM da DUM

Metric variations:-

Old English
The metric system of Old English poetry was different from that of modern English, and more related to the verse forms of most of older Germanic languages.
It used alliterative verse, a metrical pattern involving varied numbers of syllables but a fixed number (usually four) of strong stresses in each line.
The unstressed syllables were relatively unimportant, but the caesurae played a major role in Old English poetry.

Modern English

Most English meter is classified according to the same system as Classical meter with an important difference.
English is an accentual language, and therefore beats and offbeats (stressed and unstressed syllables) take the place of the long and short syllables of classical systems.
In most English verse, the meter can be considered as a sort of back beat, against which natural speech rhythms vary expressively.
The most common characteristic feet of English verse are the iamb in two syllables and the anapest in three. (See Foot (prosody) for a complete list of the metrical feet and their names.)

Metrical systems
The number of metrical systems in English is not agreed upon.
The four major types are: accentual verse, accentual-syllabic verse, syllabic verse and quantitative verse. The alliterative verse of Old English could also be added to this list, or included as a special type of accentual verse.
Accentual verse focuses on the number of stresses in a line, while ignoring the number of offbeats and syllables; accentual-syllabic verse focuses on regulating both the number of stresses and the total number of syllables in a line;
Syllabic verse only counts the number of syllables in a line; quantitative verse regulates the patterns of long and short syllables (this sort of verse is often considered alien to English)
It is to be noted, however, that the use of foreign meters in English is all but exceptional.
Frequently-used meters
The most frequently encountered meter of English verse is the iambic pentameter.
In which the metrical norm is five iambic feet per line, though metrical substitution is common and rhythmic variations practically inexhaustible. John Milton’s Paradise Lost.
Most sonnets, and much else besides in English are written in iambic pentameter.
Lines of unrhymed iambic pentameter are commonly known as blank verse.
Blank verse in the English language is most famously represented in the plays of William Shakespeare and the great works of Milton, though Tennyson (Ulysses, The Princess) and Wordsworth (The Prelude) also make notable use of it.
A rhymed pair of lines of iambic pentameter make a heroic couplet, a verse form which was used so often in the eighteenth century that it is now used mostly for humorous effect (although see Pale Fire for a non-trivial case). The most famous writers of heroic couplets are Dryden and Pope.
Another important meter in English is the ballad meter, also called the “common meter”
A four-line stanza, with two pairs of a line of iambic tetrameter followed by a line of iambic trimeter; the rhymes usually fall on the lines of trimeter, although in many instances the tetrameter also rhymes.
This is the meter of most of the Border and Scots or English ballads. In hymnody it is called the “common meter”,
It is the most common of the named hymn meters used to pair many hymn lyrics with melodies, such as:-
Amazing Grace:
Amazing Grace! how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me;
I once was lost, but now am found;
Was blind, but now I see.
Emily Dickinson is famous for her frequent use of ballad meter:
Great streets of silence led away
To neighborhoods of pause —
Here was no notice — no dissent —
No universe — no laws.
Poems with a well-defined overall metric pattern often have a few lines that violate that pattern.
A common variation is the inversion of a foot, which turns an iamb (“da-DUM”) into a trochee (“DUM-da”).
Another common variation is a headless verse, which lacks the first syllable of the first foot.
Yet a third variation is catalexis, where the end of a line is shortened by a foot, or two or part thereof – an example of this is at the end of each verse in Keats’
‘La Belle Dame sans Merci’:
And on thy cheeks a fading rose (4 feet)
Fast withereth too (2 feet)
Foot type Style Stress pattern Syllable count
Iamb Iambic
Unstressed + Stressed Two
Trochee Trochaic Stressed + Unstressed Two
Spondee Spondaic Stressed + Stressed Two
Anapest Anapestic Unstressed + Unstressed + Stressed Three
Dactyl Dactylic Stressed + Unstressed + Unstressed Three
Amphibrach Amphibrachic Unstressed + Stressed + Unstressed Three
Pyrrhic Pyrrhic Unstressed + Unstressed Two
Source: Cummings Study Guides
If there is one foot, it’s called monometer;
Two feet, dimeter;
Three is trimeter;
Four is tetrameter;
Five is pentameter;
Six is hexameter,
Seven is heptameter
Eight is octameter.
For example, if the feet are iambs, and if there are five feet to a line, then it’s called iambic pentameter.
If the feet are primarily dactyls and there are six to a line, then it’s dactylic hexameter.
Meter in various languages
Main article: Sanskrit prosody
Main article: Vedic meter
Classical Sanskrit and Vedic Sanskrit use meters for most ancient treatises that are set to verse.
Prominent Vedic meters include Gayatri, Ushnik, Anushtupa, Brhati, Pankti, Tristubh and Jagati.
The basic meter for epic verse is the Sloka. Sanskrit meter is quantitative, similar in general principles to classical Greek and Latin meter.
The Bhagavad Gita is mainly written in anustupa (with some vasanta-tilaka sections) interspersed with some Tristubh.
For example, when Krishna reveals his divinity to Arjuna the meter changes to Tristubh.
Tristubh is the most prevalent meter of the ancient Rigveda, accounting for roughly 40% of its verses.
[edit]Greek and Latin
The metrical “feet” in the classical languages were based on the length of time taken to pronounce each syllable, which were categorized according to their weight as either “long” syllables or “short” syllables (indicated as daa and duh below).
These are also called “heavy” and “light” syllables, respectively, to distinguish from long and short vowels. The foot is often compared to a musical measure and the long and short syllables to whole notes and half notes. In English poetry, feet are determined by emphasis rather than length.
With stressed and unstressed syllables serving the same function as long and short syllables in classical meter.
The basic unit in Greek and Latin prosody is a mora, which is defined as a single short syllable.
A long syllable is equivalent to two moras.
A long syllable contains either a long vowel, a diphthong, or a short vowel followed by two or more consonants.
Various rules of elision sometimes prevent a grammatical syllable from making a full syllable, and certain other lengthening and shortening rules (such as correption) can create long or short syllables in contexts where one would expect the opposite.
The most important Classical meter is the dactylic hexameter, the meter of Homer and Virgil.
This form uses verses of six feet.
The word dactyl comes from the Greek word daktylos meaning finger, since there is one long part followed by two short stretches.[2] The first four feet are dactyls (daa-duh-duh), but can be spondees (daa-daa).
The fifth foot is almost always a dactyl.
The sixth foot is either a spondee or a trochee (daa-duh).
The initial syllable of either foot is called the ictus, the basic “beat” of the verse.
There is usually a caesura after the ictus of the third foot. The opening line of the Æneid is a typical line of dactylic hexameter:
Armă vĭ | rumquĕ că | nō, Troi | ae quī | prīmŭs ăb | ōrīs
(“I sing of arms and the man, who first from the shores of Troy. . . “)
In this example, the first and second feet are dactyls; their first syllables, “Ar” and “rum” respectively, contain short vowels, but count as long because the vowels are both followed by two consonants.
The third and fourth feet are spondees, the first of which is divided by the main caesura of the verse.
The fifth foot is a dactyl, as is nearly always the case. The final foot is a spondee.
The dactylic hexameter was imitated in English by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in his poem Evangeline:
This is the forest primeval. The murmuring pines and the hemlocks,
Bearded with moss, and in garments green, indistinct in the twilight,
Stand like Druids of old, with voices sad and prophetic,
Stand like harpers hoar, with beards that rest on their bosoms.
Notice how the first line:
This is the | for-est pri | me-val. The | mur-muring | pines and the | hem-locks
Follows this pattern:
dum diddy | dum diddy | dum diddy | dum diddy | dum diddy | dum dum
Also important in Greek and Latin poetry is the dactylic pentameter.
This was a line of verse, made up of two equal parts, each of which contains two dactyls followed by a long syllable, which counts as a half foot. In this way, the number of feet amounts to five in total.
Spondees can take the place of the dactyls in the first half, but never in the second.
The long syllable at the close of the first half of the verse always ends a word, giving rise to a caesura.
Dactylic pentameter is never used in isolation.
Rather, a line of dactylic pentameter follows a line of dactylic hexameter in the elegiac distich or elegiac couplet, a form of verse that was used for the composition of elegies and other tragic and solemn verse in the Greek and Latin world, as well as love poetry that was sometimes light and cheerful.
An example from Ovid’s Tristia:
Vergĭlĭ | um vī | dī tan | tum, nĕc ă | māră Tĭ | bullō
Tempŭs ă | mīcĭtĭ | ae || fātă dĕ | dērĕ mĕ | ae.
(“I saw only Vergil, greedy Fate gave Tibullus no time for me.”)
The Greeks and Romans also used a number of lyric meters, which were typically used for shorter poems than elegiacs or hexameter.
In Aeolic verse, one important line was called the hendecasyllabic, a line of eleven syllables.
This meter was used most often in the Sapphic stanza, named after the Greek poet Sappho, who wrote many of her poems in the form.
A hendecasyllabic is a line with a never-varying structure: two trochees, followed by a dactyl, then two more trochees.
In the Sapphic stanza, three hendecasyllabics are followed by an “Adonic” line, made up of a dactyl and a trochee.
This is the form of Catullus 51 (itself an homage to Sappho 31):
Illĕ | mī pār | essĕ dĕ | ō vĭ | dētŭr;
illĕ, | sī fās | est, sŭpĕ | rārĕ | dīvōs,
quī sĕ | dēns ad | versŭs ĭ | dentĭ | dem tē
spectăt ĕt | audĭt
(“He seems to me to be like a god; if it is permitted, he seems above the gods, he who sitting across from you gazes at you and listens to you.”)
The Sapphic stanza was imitated in English by Algernon Charles Swinburne in a poem he simply called Sapphics:
Saw the white implacable Aphrodite,
Saw the hair unbound and the feet unsandalled
Shine as fire of sunset on western waters;
Saw the reluctant…
Meters are regularized rhythms.
An arrangement of language in which the accents occur at apparently equal intervals in time. Each repeated unit of meter is called a foot.
“Meter in a poem”
A good demonstration of Meter in poetry
Must be all alone to really be me-
Don’t want anyone to know or see me
Sitting alone in a corner of the
Man in the corner feels so low, he
Watches the shadows flit by slowly,
Wishing he was alone and safely
Asking himself for the hundredth time
Why he ever agreed to come,
Was it just his hope for something
He never really understood
What it was made others feel so
The rhyme going for was not the “me” of the first line with the “me” of the second line.
Rather, it was the “be me” of the first line with the “see me” of the second line.
As with most of my work, this one too was written as a song, albeit a very short one.
The song works on a 4/4 meter… i.e. four beats to every line.
Below I have capitalised the STRESSED syllables to try explain how i intended this to be heard / read;
As you will see, the last line of each “stanza” actually has just one word, being the first stressed syllable, with a long pause / space for the 2nd, 3rd and 4th beats of the line.
Must BE all a-LONE to RE-ally BE me-
Don’t WANT any-ONE to KNOW or SEE me
SIT-ting a-LONE in a COR-ner OF the
ROOM (…2…3…4…)
MAN in the COR-ner FEELS so LOW, he
WA-tches the SHA-dows FLIT by SLOW-ly,
WISH-ing he WAS a-LONE and SAFE-ly
HOME (…2…3…4…)
ASK-king him-SELF for the HUN-dredth TIME
WHY he EV-er a-GREED to COME,
WAS it JUST his HOPE for SOME-thing
HE never RE-ally UN-der-STOOD
WHAT it WAS made OTH-ers FEEL so
GOOD (…2…3…4…)
Qualitative vs. quantitative meter
The meter of much poetry of the Western world and elsewhere is based on particular patterns of syllables of particular types.
The familiar type of meter in English-language poetry is called qualitative meter, with stressed syllables coming at regular intervals (e.g. in iambic pentameter, typically every even-numbered syllable).
Many Romance languages use a scheme that is somewhat similar but where the position of only one particular stressed syllable (e.g. the last) needs to be fixed.
The meter of the old Germanic poetry of languages such as Old Norse and Old English was radically different, but still was based on stress patterns.
Many classical languages, however, use a different scheme known as quantitative meter, where patterns are based on syllable weight rather than stress.
In dactylic hexameter of Classical Latin and Classical Greek, for example, each of the six feet making up the line was either a dactyl (long-short-short) or spondee (long-long), where a long syllable was literally one that took longer to pronounce than a short syllable: specifically, a syllable consisting of a long vowel or diphthong or followed by two consonants.
The stress pattern of the words made no difference to the meter.
A number of other ancient languages also used quantitative meter, such as Sanskrit and Classical Arabic (but not Biblical Hebrew
For all Meter forms not included:-
Meiosis is a figure of speech that consists of saying less than one means, or of saying what one means with less force than the occasion warrants.

A figure of speech in which one word is substituted for another with which it is closely associated.
Some significant aspect or detail of an experience is used to represent the whole experience.

Maritime is figurative speech that depends on intentional overstatement or exaggeration.

In the old days they thought that there were Nine Muses to bring to us varying types of writing this I hope will bring a little background to the word Muses when poets refer to them..
Writers similarly disagree also concerning the number of the Muses; for some say that they are three, and others that they are nine, but the number nine has prevailed since it rests upon the authority of the most distinguished men, such as Homer and Hesiod and others like them
Muse——– Type of works——- Emblem
Calliope—- Epic poetry———– Writing tablet
Clio——- —History———-——- Scrolls
Erato——- -Lyric poetry——- —Cithara (an ancient Greek musical instrument in the lyre family)
Euterpe—- Music——————- Aulos (an ancient Greek musical instrument like a flute)
Melpomene——- Tragedy——- Tragic mask
Polyhymnia——- Sacred poetry——- Veil
Terpsichore——- Dance and song——- Lyre
Thalia——- Comedy——- Comic mask
Urania——- Astronomy——- Globe and compass

Some of these I hope you will add to your dictionary..

Poetry forms “N”

• Name Poem
A name poem tells about the word. It uses the letters of the word for the first letter of each line.
• Narrative Poetry
A narrative poem is one that tells a story. It can be short or long.
It can rhyme with a set pattern or without; it doesn’t have to rhyme, though.
It can have a set meter or be a little varied.
Narrative poems don’t follow too many rules, except that they must tell a story.
Although there are few rules to narrative poetry, most narrative poems to include meter, iambs, and rhymes to help create a more aesthetic picture.
Common narrative poems include epics, ballads, and idylls.
Famous narrative poems include
The Divine Comedy by Dante, The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe, The Epic of Gilgamesh, Homer, and The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer.
Tips to Writing a Narrative Poem
1. Think of your main character, whether it will be a person or an animal- most narratives focus on a living being.
And, write a small statement of mini paragraph about the character.
2. Start with a general outline of the poem. What do you want to happen to the character throughout the poem?
3. Choose an event to start the poem.
You can’t just start all willy nilly.
The event will help you portray the perfect feel, thought, and image to your poem.
If you have a specific idea that you want to say, having the perfect event will help you get across your words.
4. Once you know where you want to go with your poem, start writing.
Once writing your narrative poem, try to consider the following tips:
• The one great thing about poetry, is that it comes from the heart, body, and soul, of the poet.
No poem is wrong, and no poet is wrong for writing the poem.
• You can portray just about any emotion or idea in a poem, and as long as you know what you want to say, the words tend to follow shortly after.
• Try to include fact, fiction, and a little personal reality to your poem.
You can include various myths to help your narrative poem along, but try not to surround the story with mysticism.
• Use vivid words and adjectives to help create the picture.
As a poet, you don’t want to throw away your words to simplicity, such as “The brown dog chased the orange cat.” Yes, the image is created, but what shade of brown, did he have spots? Was it a tabby cat? Were they thin, starving strays, or plump house pets?
• Go bold. Go big!
Example of a Kid’s Narrative Poem
Jimmy Goes to the City by Arthur Read from PBS’s “Arthur”
Jimmy was a happy ape
Until some hunters caught him
He liked the jungle better than
The city where they brought him
The city was louder
The city was meaner
Even the dirt in the jungle was cleaner
So Jimmy made a daring escape!
The hunters were suddenly minus one ape!
He climbed the tallest building
Because from there he’d see
How far away the jungle was
From the middle of the city.
Jimmy jumped into a passing plane
But the pilot didn’t wait for him to explain
Jimmy flew back to the jungle
And told his ape friends in their lair
“The city’s okay for a visit
But you couldn’t make me live there.”
2. 2.
With thanks to ” Whitney05 “
Ballads, epics, and lays are different kinds of narrative poems.
A nonet has nine lines.
The first line has nine syllables, the second line eight syllables, the third line seven syllables, etc…
Until line nine that finishes with one syllable. It can be on any subject and rhyming is optional.
line 1 – 9 syllables
line 2 – 8 syllables
line 3 – 7 syllables
line 4 – 6 syllables
line 5 – 5 syllables
line 6 – 4 syllables
line 7 – 3 syllables
line 8 – 2 syllables
line 9 – 1 syllable
I wish we didn’t have to stay here.
The only good part is lunchtime,
eating and playing handball
instead of doing maths.
I don’t like history
or geography.
I can’t wait
for the
Not sure who wrote this but as this is for teaching I
Hope that it is forgiven, have fun,


Phew! Thanks for this listing which would keep me occupied when I visit Canada for a few months to spend time with my son and his fiance who shall be getting married in June


raj (sublime_ocean)

Most of these forms are from the net I just put them into a bunch for ease of finding, some of our poets have been trained in many of these forms which I find quite hard to do, but will have a go if pushed lol.
I love Canada, you have a lovely visit there and stay safe, Yours Ian.T

There are a million reasons to believe in yourself,
So find more reasons to believe in others..

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