Poetic Forms and Terms

Poetic Forms and Terms


Lyrical poetry is poetry that has a musical quality and is very emotional. It can rhyme, have assonance, and alliteration.  


He told me

That we couldn't be

I asked him why

And he had to fly

Away forever

The above poem is very emotional and rhymes, thus making it a lyrical poem.

The original poem



Narrative Poetry is poetry that tells a story. Below and to the right are examples of narrative poetry.


They stood there,

looking at the criminal

When he pounced

No! Calls were useless

And as my love drew his last breath

he said

It is a lie

As he met his maker

I looked down at him and felt a pain

And I knew at that moment that I lived my life in vain


 Haiku- A Japanese lyric verse form having three unrhymed lines. The lines are composed as follows:

Five Syllables

Seven Syllables

Five Syllables

(Left)Figure 1: This is an example of a Haiku poem about Winter and where the frogs disappear too.


Free Verse-

Free Verse- A poem composed of variable, usually unrhymed lines having no fixed metrical pattern.

In simpler words it is a poem that has no formal format. 

(Right)Figure 2: This is the perfect example of a free verse poem. It doesn't follow any of the basic rules of poetry. 

http://media.photobucket.com/image/poems/MICHOACANA-01/POEMS.jpg (it has been edited due to an unsavory word)


Concrete- A poem that forms a picture of the topic or follows the contours of a shape that is suggested by the topic. 

These two poems (to the left) are concrete. Figure  3 is in the shape of a pacifier. Figure 4 is in the shape of a rainbow. Both of these poems are in the shape of their theme.

Sound Devices



 A word agreeing with another in terminal sound:

Find is a rhyme for mind and womankind. 



to begin with the same letter; the commencement of two or more words of a word group with te same letter:

 Apt, Alliteration's Artful Aid

Lovely Lilah Loves Lollipops


 Using words to form mental images, figures, or likeness of things:

Ex 1:

The lush green grass, lovely animals, and beautiful sunset was too much to take in in just one sitting, I was going to come back again.

Ex 2:

Her frail face lined with age

Her mouth seemed to form a frame

around her steep nose and to her golden eyes

where she held her deepest prize


 The act of repeating the words to create a dramatic effect:

I could feel my body aching, aching with the pain

I could feel my body crying, crying from the hurt


is also called the vowel's rhyme; rhyme in which the same vowel sounds are used with different consonants in the stressed syllables of the rhyming words:

penitent, reticence



Something used to represent something else. Common symbols and there meanings are:

The Dove: peace

The Heart: love

All seeing eye: inner vision, higher knowledge

For more symbols visit: http://www.crossroad.to/Books/symbols1.html 

 Figurative Language


A figure of speech that expresses a resemblance between things of different kinds (using "like" or "as")

She was as beautiful as a rose.

He was like a light amongst the darkness.


 A figure of speech in which a term or phrase is applied to something in which it is not literally applicated in order to suggest a resemblance.

Her snow white cheeks changed into a purple plum when she saw the dead body.

In the statement I compare her cheeks to snow. Then, I compare them into a plum when she sees the body. As you can notice I never used the words "like" or "as" to compare them.


to give life like qualities to a non-living thing or item:

The old, sleeping volcano finally awoke, spewing ashes all over the mountainside.

The tree began to thrash at everyone who walked its way, threatening to collapse.


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