Poetry Lit Terms

stanza
a group of lines arranged together

couplet
a two line stanza; usually rhymes

rhythm
can be created by meter, rhyme, alliteration, repetition

free verse
no repeating patterns of syllables, usually no regular rhyme, often sections with no size standard, modern

internal rhyme
a word inside a line rhymes with another word on the same line, or lines very close to one another

slant rhyme
end rhyme that is close but not exact

rhyme/rhyme scheme
a pattern of end rhyme; this pattern is shown with letters at the end of each line

onomatopoeia
words that imitate the sound they name

alliteration
(usually consonant) sounds repeated at the beginnings of words

consonance
repeated consonant sounds in middle or ends of the words

assonance
a type of alliteration in which repeated vowel sounds are in a line or lines of poetry

simile
a comparison of two things using like, as, than, or resembles

metaphor
a direct comparison of two unlike things

extended metaphor
a metaphor that goes on for some time in the work

conceit
a single, unusual comparison made through a metaphor used throughout a poem

personification
an object, something natural, or an animal is given life-like and/or human qualities

symbol
a person, place, thing, or event that has meaning in itself also represents something else

allusion
a reference in a literary work to something widely known, whether mythology, religion, culture, history, or other.

imagery
language that appeals to the five senses

archaic language
old-fashioned phrasing or word choices

paradox
an apparently contradictory statement that actually contains some truth

blank verse
poetry written in un-rhymed iambic pentameter

tercet
a three line stanza

quatrain
a four line stanza

connotation
All the meanings, associations or emotions that a word suggests

capitalization
The use of capitalized letters to signify something has more than usual value to the poet

enjambment
In poetry, when one line ends without a pause and continues into the next line for its meaning.

refrain
A line or lines repeated regularly, usually in a poem or song.

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