A B C D E F H I K L M O P Q R S T V
An acrostic is
a series of lines or verses in which the first, last or other
particular letters, when taken in order, spell out a word or
An allegory is
a symbolic story that serves as a disguised representation for meanings
other than those indicated on the surface. The characters in an
allegory often have no individual personality, but are embodiments of
moral qualities and other abstractions. The allegory is closely related
to the parable, fable and metaphor, differing from them largely in
intricacy and length. John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, a prose
narrative, is an allegory of man's spiritual
is the repetition of the same starting sound in several words of a
sentence: Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper is an example of
An anapest is a metrical foot of three syllables, the first
two short, the last long. The anapest is the reverse of the
An anthology is collection of poems, stories, songs etc
chosen by the compiler. Forward Press compiles
An antistrophe is the last of three series of lines forming
the divisions of each section of a Pindaric
also called 'vowel rhyme'. Assonance is the repetition or a pattern of
similar sounds: "That dolphin-torn, that gong-tormented sea" (William
A ballad is a
poem that tells a story, that often has a repeated refrain. 'The Rime of
the Ancient Mariner' by Samuel Taylor Coleridge is an example of a
A ballade is a type of poem, usually with three stanzas of
seven, eight, or ten lines and a shorter final stanza (or envoy) of four
or five lines. All stanzas end with the same one-line
- Blank verse
Blank verse is
poetry that is written in unrhymed iambic
A Caesura is a
pause in a line of verse dictated by sense or natural speech rhythm
rather than by metrics.
A canto is one of the main or larger divisions of a long
A canzone is a medieval Italian lyric poem, with five or six
stanzas and a shorter concluding stanza (or
A chorus is part of a song or poem that is repeated
following each verse (aka refrain).
The cinquian was created by Adelaide Crapsey. A cinquian is
composed of five unrhymed lines of two, four, six, eight and two
Made up of or composed of.
Consonance is the repetition of consonants or of a consonant
pattern, especially at the ends of
(of writing) The putting together of words in a correct and
A couplet is a
pair of lines that are the same length and usually rhyme and form a
complete thought. Shakespearean sonnets end in a rhyming
A dactyl is a
foot of three syllables, one long followed by two short in quantitative
meter, or one stressed followed by two unstressed in accentual meter, as
in gently and humanly. The dactyl is the reverse of the
or diamond, poem is a style of poetry made up of 6 lines, using only 13
words, and forms the shape of a diamond. The poem starts with one
subject and evolves into a different subject, the opposite of the
Echo verse is a
poem in which the words or syllables at the end of a line are repeated
as a repsonse in the next line, often for ironic
An elergy is a mournful, melancholy, or plaintive poem,
especially a funeral song or a lament for the
Enjambent, in poetry, is the continuation of an idea or
thought from one line to the
An envoy is
the shorter final stanza of a poem.
An epic is a long, serious poem that tells the story of a
heroic figure, such as Odyssey or
An epigram is a very short, witty poem: "Sir, I admit your
general rule,/That every poet is a fool,/But you yourself may serve to
show it,/That every fool is not a poet" (Samuel Taylor
An epistle is a composition in prose or poetry written in
the form of a letter.
An epithalamium is a poem in honour of a bride and
An epode is
the last of three series of lines forming the divisions of each section
of a Pindaric ode.
is a rhyme either of two syllables of which the second is unstressed
(double rhyme), as in motion, notion, or of three syllables of which the
second and third are unstressed (triple rhyme), as in fortunate,
A foot is a group of two or more syllables in which one
syllable has the major stress, forming the basic unit of poetic
- Free verse
Free verse is
also known as vers libre, is poetry composed of either rhymed or
unrhymed lines that have no set meter.
Haiku is a Japanese poem composed of three unrhymed lines
of five, seven, and five syllables. Traditional haiku often reflect on
some aspect of nature, though modern haiku are unrestricted on subject
A heptameter is a line of poetry that has seven metrical
- Heroic couplet
A heroic couplet is a stanza composed of two rhymed lines in
A hexameter is a line of poetry that has six metrical
Hokku is the opening verse of a linked verse series. Hokku
is also known as Haiku.
Hyperbole is a
figure of speech in which deliberate exaggeration is used for emphasis.
'A flood of tears' or 'a mountain of ashes' are examples of hyperbole.
Hyperbole is the opposite of litotes.
An iamb is a metrical foot of two syllables, one short (or
unstressed) and one long (or stressed). The iamb is the reverse of the
- Iambic pentameter
pentameter is the most common type of meter in English poetry, in which
there are five iambs to a line. (The prefix penta- means "five," as in
pentagon, a geometrical figure with five sides. Meter refers to rhythmic
units. In a line of iambic pentameter, there are five rhythmic units
that are iambs.)
Idiosyncratic means a structural or behavioural
characteristic peculiar to an individual or group.
An idyll is
either a short poem depicting a tranquil country scene, or a long poem
telling a story about heroic deeds or extraordinary events of myth and
A kenning is a
poetic phrase of one line used in place of a person / place / object,
for example 'a wave rider','for','a boat'. A Kennings poem is made up of
several individual phrases. One phrase is referred to as a kenning and
the complete poem as a Kennings.
A kyrielle is a
French verse form, usually octosyllabic, rhyming couplets. The rhyming
couplets are often paired in quatrains and are characterised by a
refrain that is sometimes a single word and sometimes the full second
line of the couplet, or the full fourth line of the
A lay is a long narrative
A limerick is a humorous poem of five lines with the rhyme
scheme of aabba.
Litotes is an understatement for rhetoric effect, especially
when an affirmative is expressed by the negative of its contrary, as in
'not bad at all'. Litotes is the opposite of
A liturgy is a form of public
A lyric, in
poetry, is a short personal poem.
rhyme is a rhyme of but a single stressed syllable, as in disdain,
A metaphor is a figure of speech in which a term or phrase
is applied to something to which it is not literally applicable in order
to suggest a resemblance. 'A mighty fortress is our god' or 'a sea of
troubles' are examples of metaphor.
Meter is the
arrangement of a line of poetry by the number of syllables and the
rhythm of stressed syllables.
Octosyllabic means consisting of eight
An ode is a poem devoted to the praise of a person, animal,
or thing. An ode is usually written in an elevated style and often
expresses deep feeling. John Keats wrote several
Onomatopoeia means to use words to imitate sounds. 'The hum
of the bees' or 'The tin can rattled down the alleyway' are examples of
- Ottava rima
An ottava rima is a poem consisting of 10- or 11-syllable
lines arranged in 8-line octaves with the rhyme scheme
An oxymoron is
a figure of speech that uses contradictory terms.'Plastic
glass','deafening silence','pretty ugly' and 'minor crisis' are all
examples of an oxymoron.
A pantoum is a
verse form consisting of a series of quatrains in which the seond and
fourth lines of each verse are repeated as the first and third lines of
Pentameter is a
line of poetry that has five metrical
Personification means to give human attributes to objects or
ideas. 'Death is tall, dark and deadly' or 'Blind justice' are examples
- Petrarchan Sonnet
Sonnet for definition.
A poem is an arrangement of words written or spoken:
traditionally a rhythmical compostion, sometimes rhymed, expressing
experiences, ideas or emotions in a style more imaginative and powerful
than that of ordinary speech or prose: some poems are in meter, others
Poetry is literature in metrical form, i.e.
- Poetry Slam
A poetry slam is a spoken-word poetry
- Powerful Verbs
Using a synonym to make your writing more exciting. For
example - instead of saying hit use slam, punch, whack, beat, scratch,
Prose is the
ordinary form of written or spoken language, without rhyme or meter;
speech or writing,sometimes, specifically non-fictional writing that is
A renga is a
Japanese verse form in which stanzas of three lines alternating with
stanzas of two lines are composed by two or more poets in
A renku is, by strict definition, a smaller, more
rigidly-structured subset of renga, with three-line haikus (five
syllables / seven syllables / seven syllables) alternating with two-line
stnzas of seven syllables each.
A refrain is a phrase or verse recurring at intervals in a
song or poem, especially at the end of each stanza;
A rondeau is a short poem of fixed form, consisting of 13 or
10 lines on two rhymes and having the opening words or phrase used in
two places as an unrhymed refrain.
A rhyme is a word that is identical to another in its
terminal sound: 'while' is a rhyme for 'mile'.
- Rhyming Couplet
couplets are a pair of lines that are the same length and usually rhyme
and form a complete thought. Shakespearean sonnets end in a rhyming
- Rhyming Dictionary
dictionary is a dictionary available online and in a published book
format, that suggests rhymes for words.
A rhythm is a
uniform or patterned recurrence of beat, accent or similar. (For poetry)
metrical or rhymical form aka
describes something or someone 'like' or 'as' something else. 'She was
as white as a ghost' is an example of a simile.
- Shakespearean Sonnet
Sonnet for definition.
Please see Poetry Slam for definition.
A sonnet is a
poem, properly expressive of a single, complete thought, idea, or
sentiment, of 14 lines, usually in iambic pentameter, with rhymes
arranged according to one of certain definite schemes, being in the
strict or Italian (aka Petrarchan Sonnet) form divided into a major
group of 8 lines (the octave) followed by a minor group of 6 lines (the
sestet), and in a common Shakespearean form into 3 quatrains followed by
a rhyming couplet.
the promoters of some of the best local and national spoken word talent
in the UK.
A stanza is an arrangement of a certain number of lines,
usually four or more, sometimes having a fixed length, meter, or rhyme
scheme, forming a division of a poem.
A strophe is the first of three series of lines forming the
divisions of each section of a Pindaric ode.
A synonym is a
word that has the same or nearly the same meaning as another word in
the language, such as joyful, elated,
tanka is a Japanese poem of five lines, the first and third lines are
composed of five syllables and the rest of seven.
A tercet is a
three-lined stanza, often rhyming. A tercet is included in poetry styles
such as terza rima, odes, sonnets, cantos and
- Terza rima
A terza riman is a type of poetry consisting of 10- or
11-syllable lines arranged in three-line tercets with the rhyme scheme
aba bcb cdc, etc. The poet Dante is credited with inventing terza rima,
which he used in his Divine Comedy.
The poetic form of the tetractys only has five lines. Each
line adds one syllable until the last line which has ten
is a line of verse that has four metrical feet.
A triolet is a
short poem of fixed form, having a rhyme scheme of ab, aa, abab, and
having the first line repeated as the fourth and seventh lines, and the
second line repeated as the eighth.
A trochee is a
metrical foot of two syllables, one long (or stressed) and one short
(or unstressed). The trochee is the reverse of the
A verse is a single metrical line of
A villanelle is
a short poem of fixed form, written in tercets, usually five in number,
follwed by a final quantrain, all being based on tow
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