Ms. Elmore's 7th Grade Language Arts

Types of Poetry

POETRY is literature that is written in verses and lines.

EPICS are long poems divided into “books”. They tell a story about a hero’s adventures and involve supernatural creatures likes gods and monsters. Epics include invocation and epithet. Invocation is asking a god or muse for help telling the story. Epithet involves naming a character’s qualities. For example, calling Odysseus “king of men”. Example of an epic: The Odyssey by Homer

A LYRIC POEM conveys an exact mood or feeling in a reader. An important type of lyric is a sonnet.

SONNETS are lyric poems with fourteen lines. The last two lines are rhyming couplets. A couplet is two lines of poetry that rhyme. William Shakespear made the sonnet popular. They are usually love poems.

BALLADS are part of the oral tradition and tell a story in song. Ballads focus on the actions and dialogues of a story, not on the characters. They end in catastrophy or badly. “The Ballad of Jesse James” is an example of a ballad.

HAIKUS are three line traditional Japanese poems, usually about nature. The first and third lines have five syllables. The middle line has seven. Haikus rely on sharp imagery and exact detail to convey a mood or tone.

LIMERICKS are short, funny poems from Ireland. They usually have five lines and a twist at the end.


METER is the pattern of stressed or unstressed syllables in a poem. It is closely related to rhythm.

RHYTHM is the pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables over the course of a poetic work.

RHYME is the repetition of like-sounding words that appear close together in a poem. Sometimes the rhyme is INTERNAL, or within the line of the poem instead of just at the end. Slant rhymes are words that ALMOST rhyme like room and storm.

RHYME SCHEME is the arrangement of rhymes formed by an end rhyme over the course of a poem. It is marked by different consonants for each set of rhyming words.

ALITERATION is the use of words with similar consonant sounds close together in a poem. “The crumbly castles” is an example.

ASSONANCE is the repetitions of similar vowel sounds among two or several words.


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