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Types of Poetry

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BalladA narrative poem originally meant to be sung or recited, usually tell of an exciting or dramatic episode, were passed on by word of mouth for generations before being written down.
CoupletTwo consecutive, often rhymed lines of poetry that work together as a unit to make a point or to express an idea
EpicA long narrative poem, written in a dignified style, that celebrates the adventures and achievements of oneor more heroic figures of legned, history or religion
FableA short, simple tale that teaches a moral, or lesson, about human behavior. The characters are often animals who speak and act like people.
Fairy TaleA type of folktale that features supernatural elements, such as spirits, talking animals, and magic
FolkloreThe traditional beliefs, customs, stories, songs, and dances of a culture. It is based on the concerns of ordinary people and is passed through oral tradition
Free VersePoetry that has no fixed pattern of meter, rhyme, line length, or stanza arrangement. Poets who write this ignore traditional rules, they use techniques such as repetition and alliteration to create musical patterns in the poems
HaikuA traditinal Japanes for of poetry that has three lines and seventeen syllables. The first and third lines have five syllables each; the middle line has seven syllabels.
Lyric PoetryPoetry that expresses strong personal feelings about an object, person, or event. They are usually short and musical
MeterA regular pattern of stressed an unstressed syllables that gives a line of poetry a predictable rhythm
Mytha traditional story of unknown authorship, often involving goddesses, gods, heroes, and supernatural forces, that attempts to explain why or how something came to be. It may explanin a belief, custom or a force of nature.
Narrative PoetryVerse that tells a story. It includes ballads and epics as well as shorter forms that are usually more selective and concentrated than are prose stories.
OdeA long, complex lyric poem expressed in a dignified and serious tone and style. Some celebrate a person or an event; others are more private reflections
RefrainA line or lines repeated regularly, usually in a poem or song
RhymeThe repetition of similar or identical sounds at the ends of words that appear close to each other
End RhymeRhyme that occurs at the end of lines.
Rhyme SchemeThe pattern of thyme formed by the end rhyme in a stanza or poem. It is designated by the assignment of a different letter of the alphabet to each new rhyme. For example ababcb
RhythmThe pattern of beats created by the arrangement of stressed an unstresssed syllables, especially in poetry. It gives poetry a musical quality that helps convey its meaning
SonnetA lyric poem containing fourteen lines, usually written in iambic pentamenter. It has a strict pattern of rhyme and usually deals with a single theme, idea, or sentiment
StanzaA group of lines forming a unit in a poem. They are, in effect, the paragraphs of a poem. Typically they are separated by a line of space.
Tall TaleA wildly imaginative story, usually passed down orally, about the fantastic adventures or amazing feats of folk heroes in realistic settings. They are folklore associated with the American frontier


HS Grade ELA
Kermit High School
Kermit, TX

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