Poetry Styles Creating variety in your poetic writing style!
Haikus • The Japanese poetry style is a 3 line, 17 syllable poem. • The first line has 5 syllables, the second has 7, and the third has 5. • Haikus often (but do not have to) describe nature.
Example haiku Arched back, bent head, YAWN! My cat suddenly looks wild. But then he just sleeps.
Concrete Poem • Poem’s shape reflects the way we experience it. • The content is usually related to the shape.
Concrete poem example The dog walks in a straight line. The owner pulls pulls pulls at his leash until the dog agrees he will go home.
Excerpt from “Coffee” Two comforts found in the same cup of coffee Carmel combined with ice and cocoa, and the whipped cream that topped the coffee D R I P P E D of our noses as we drank.
Epigram • A very short poem, usually 2 lines, that says something interesting or witty.
Epigram example Here we are all, by day; by night, we’re hurled By dreams, each one into a separate world.
Acrostic Poem • A poem in which the first letter of every line spells out a word read going down.
Acrostic poem example Can you imagine the speed? Avenue after avenue, Racing to get there first.
Villanelle • The villanelle has 19 lines, 5 stanzas of three lines and 1 stanza of four lines with two rhymes and two refrains. The 1st, then the 3rd lines alternate as the last lines of stanzas 2,3,and 4, and then stanza 5 (the end) as a couplet. It is usually written in tetrameter (4 feet) or pentameter. The structure is:
Villanelle • line 1 - a - 1st refrainline 2 - bline 3 - a - 2nd refrain • line 4 - aline 5 - bline 6 - a - 1st refrain (same as line 1) • line 7 - aline 8 - bline 9 - a - 2nd refrain (same as line 2) • line 10 - aline 11 - bline 12 - a - 1st refrain (same as line 1) • line 13 - aline 14 - bline 15 - a - 2nd refrain (same as line 2) • line 16 - aline 17 - bline 18 - a - 1st refrain (same as line 1)line 19 - a - 2nd refrain (same as line 2)
Villanelle example When We Were Thirteen Remember running wild and freewhen we hung out by the river,you and Markus and Tim and me. We'd walk for an eternity.We took what life could deliverremember running wild and free. Our voices echoed loud with gleetill it got dark and we'd shiver,you and Markus and Tim and me. Quite often we went absentee.Mum got cross but we'd forgive herremember running wild and free. Our parents tried to oversee.They went mad and made us quiver,you and Markus and Tim and me. Then we grew up. Now we're forty,This memory is a sliver.Remember running wild and free,you and Markus and Tim and me.
Cinquains/Quatrains • Cinquains are a 5 line stanza • The traditional cinquain is based on a syllable count. • line 1 - 2 syllablesline 2 - 4 syllablesline 3 - 6 syllablesline 4 - 8 syllablesline 5 - 2 syllables • The modern cinquain is based on a word count of words of a certain type. • line 1 - one word (noun) a title or name of the subjectline 2 - two words (adjectives) describing the titleline 3 - three words (verbs) describing an action related to the titleline 4 - four words describing a feeling about the title, a complete sentenceline 5 - one word referring back to the title of the poem
Cinquain examples A Threat Stormclouds, casting shadows over weary soldiers, threaten to cry heavy buckets of tears. Shining Secret Moonbeams Lighting the sea On a still cloudless night Illuminate the seaponies At play
Quatrains • Quatrains are a 4 line stanza • Alternating Quatrain- a four line stanza rhyming "abab.“ • Envelope Stanza- a quatrain with the rhyme scheme "abba", such that lines 2 and 3 are enclosed between the rhymes of lines 1 and 4.
Quatrain example • Alternating Quatrain- From W.H. Auden's "Leap Before You Look" • The sense of danger must not disappear:The way is certainly both short and steep, However gradual it looks from here;Look if you like, but you will have to leap. • Envelope Stanza- This is from Auden's "Look Before You Leap" The worried efforts of the busy heap,The dirt, the imprecision, and the beerProduce a few smart wisecracks every year; Laugh if you can, but you will have to leap.