Top 50 Poetry Forms








  • A poem whose first words of lines are arranged alphabetically, e.g., in the format A, B, C, and so on.
  • Lines can be words, phrases, or clauses.
  • The last line is usually one complete sentence.



  • The poem tells a story the same way a fold tale or legend would do.
  • The poem usually has a repeated refrain.
  • Ballads are performed by singing.
  • Ballads have dramatic themes, for instance, death, love, or supernatural power.


Blank Verse

  • Poems that are written in an unrhymed iambic pentameter, and is usually unobtrusive
  • The form of the iambic pentameter can be likened to the rhythms of a speech.



  • A poem with four stanzas, the first three of which can have seven, eight or ten lines
  • The final stanza is shorter than the rest, usually with four or five lines.
  • Each of the four stanzas ends with the same refrain made up if one line.



  • A poem that is written in such a manner that the sequence of certain letters, mostly the first letter in each line, create a word or message.
  • Sometimes, poets can create words using both the first and last letter of each line



  • This is a poem with a biographic content.
  • The poem can be about the life of self, personality traits, or ambitions.



  • A poem with five of six stanzas, and a shorter final stanza (envoi), associated with medieval Italian lyric.
  • The stanzas can be made up of 5 or 6 lines, or even 12 lines.
  • Has hendecasyllabic lines with end-rhyme.


Carpe diem

  • Poems whose theme is living for today.
  • Message mainly intended to encourage people to enjoy their youthful days.



  • Poems with 5 lines that stick to a specific format.
  • Line 1: Title
  • Line 2: two words describing the title
  • Line 3: three words communicating an action
  • Line 4: Four words expressing a feeling
  • Line 5: one word recalling the



  • Poems that communicate the ideas of aesthetic values of Graeco-Roman art, architecture, and literature.



  • Poetry that brings out the element of a poem by typographical arrangements.
  • Either re-arranges the letters of words or the letters are arranged in a given shape or pattern.
  • Concrete poetry used words visually, i.e., makes words to look like a piece of art.



  • A poem that is made up of two lines
  • Typically, the two lines are of the same length/ have same meter
  • Some couplets are formal (closed), while others are run-on (open).


Dramatic monologue

  • Poetry where the persona addresses a silent listener.
  • The poetry is written in the form of a speech.
  • Such poems are usually short and take the form of a song.



  • Poems that carry the theme of sadness.
  • Displays the persona’s thoughts and feelings about a sad event, e.g., the death of a person



  • Poem with stanzas of three lines
  • Two or all the three lines of a stanza have the same rhyme.



  • Poetry whose stanzas have four lines.
  • The lines have various rhyme patterns.



  • Lyric poems that usually has fourteen lines that have an iambic pentameter
  • The number of lines in later sonnets varies from 10 to 16.
  • Sonnets use two major rhyme schemes. The first is the Italian/Petrarchan rhyme pattern with an octave/octet (eight lines), which rhymes abbaabba.
  • The second pattern is the sestet that rhymes cdecde, or sometimes cdccdc.
  • Usually, the octave usually carries the main argument, while the sestet changes the argument; the sestet is introduced by a word like “but” or “yet.”



  • Poetry with intricate verse or rhyme pattern
  • Poems consist of five tercets that rhyme aba, and a concluding quatrain that rhymes abaa.
  • One or more lines of the first tercet are repeated in other stanzas, forming a refrain.


Terza rima

  • A variant of the tercet that uses chain rhyme
  • The second line of each stanza rhymes with the first and third lines of the subsequent stanza (this form a rhyme pattern: abc, bcb, cdc, and so on).



  • Stanza with nine lines that rhyme ababbcbcc.
  • The first eight lines have an iambic pentameter, while the last line is an alexandrine (that is, six iambic feet).


Spenserian Sonnet

  • A sonnet in which quatrains are linked with rhymes.
  • The rhyme pattern is abab, cdcd, ee.


English/Shakespearean Sonnet

  • A sonnet with three quatrains and a concluding couplet.
  • The typical rhyme pattern is abab, cdcd, efef, gg.
  • The couplet gives the turn from the preceding part.



  • Used for nonsense verse.
  • Made up of five lines of which two are long (with trimeter, one trochaic foot, and two anapaests), two are short (with anapaestic dimeter), and the remaining one line is trimeter (with one trochee and two anapaests).


Stichic Verse

  • Consist of lines of the same length and meter that run continuously.
  • This form can be used to write narrative poetry.


Rhyme Royal

  • A stanza made up of seven lines that have iambic pentameter.
  • The lines have a rhyme pattern of ababbcc.


Ottava rima

  • A stanza consisting of 8 lines
  • The rhyme pattern is abababcc.


The Bop

  • A poetic form whose poems have three stanzas, each of which is followed by a refrain.
  • The first stanza consists of 6 lines, and it is the one that introduces/communicates the problem.
  • The second stanza has 8 lines, which expands the problem
  • The last stanza has 6 lines and can represent the solution or identifies the failure of attempts to solve the problem.


Bref Double

  • A poem made up of 4 stanzas, 3 of which have 4 lines (quatrains), and the remaining one stanza is a couplet
  • Has three rhymes: an A rhyme, B rhyme (both pf which appear twice in stanzas 1-3 and once in the couplet), and C rhyme, which appears in the last line of the couplet.
  • Poems have variable line length, but consistency is maintained within each poem.



  • A poem made up of 10 lines.
  • Each line has 8 syllables.
  • Has a rhyme pattern abbaaccddc.
  • Common in Puerto Rico, and is often sung.


Descort Poem

  • A poem whose lines are differentiated from each other—each line is unique relative to all other lines in the poem
  • Lines are of different lengths and meters.
  • There are rhymes or refrains both within lines and stanzas.


Dizain Poems

  • The poem consists of one stanza made up of 10 lines.
  • Each line has 10 syllables.
  • The lines take a rhyme pattern ababbccdcd.


Blackout poem

  • A poem made by redacting words from an existing test-line.
  • The text and censored text take the form of a poem.


Blitz Poetry

  • A 50-line poem made up of short phrases and images, and that uses no punctuation.
  • Line one and two are short phrases or images, each with the same first word.
  • Lines three and four are also short phrases of images, and both use the last word of the second line as their first word. Similarly, lines 5 and 6 are made up of phrases or images, and both use the last word of the fourth line as their first word, and the pattern continues up to the 48th line.
  • Line 49 is one word long and uses the last word of line 48.
  • Line 50 is also one word long, using the last word of line 47.


Cartena Rondo

  • A poem with a varying number of quatrains., each of which has a rhyme pattern of AbbA
  • The first line of each quatrain is repeated at the end of the quatrain.
  • The second line of each quatrain forms the first line of the subsequent quatrain.
  • First quatrain and last quatrain are identical.


Free verse

  • A poem that follows no rules.
  • Rhymes, punctuation, number of stanzas, syllable count, number of lines, etc. are done as the author pleases.



  • A lengthy poem that takes the form of a narrative
  • Themes are the achievements of legendries or heroes.



  • Line with seven lines.
  • The poem is written in the shape of a diamond.
  • The poem needs not to rhyme



  • Japanese poetry whose syllable follows a given pattern.
  • Consists of three lines, and a total of seventeen syllables.
  • Haiku poems usually talk about a part of nature.



  • Poem with a lot of repetition.
  • Made up of quatrain stanzas
  • Stanzas follow a given pattern: line 2 and 4 of a stanza form lines 1 and 3 of the subsequent stanza.
  • Line 3 of the first stanza forms line 2 of the last stanza, and line 1 of the first stanza forms line 4 of the last stanza.



  • Japanese poetry that follows a specific syllable format.
  • The whole poem is 5 lines long.
  • The first line and third line have 5 syllables.
  • The second, third, and fifth line have 7 syllables each.


Contrapuntal Poem

  • Poems that integrate at least two separate poems into one.
  • For two poems, integration takes the form of writing corresponding lines of each poem in order to form a single composition that can be read as poetry.


Clogyrnach Poem

  • Typically a six-line syllabic verse whose rhyme scheme takes the pattern ab.
  • Line 1 and 2 have 8 syllables and a rhyme each.
  • Line 3 and 4 have 5 syllables and b rhyme each.
  • Line 5 and 6 have 3 syllables each, but line 5 has a b rhyme, while line 6 has a rhyme.


Cyrch A Chwta Poem

  • Poems with an eight-line stanza (octave).
  • Each line has seven syllables
  • Lines 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 8 have the same end rhyme.
  • Line 7 and 8 have internal rhyme, commonly on syllable 3, 4, or 5.


Echo Verse Poem

  • A poem that repeats the end syllable or each line.
  • Repeated syllables are achieved by repeating the ending syllable at the end of the same line, or repeating the syllable individually beneath each line.



  • Poetic notes that are written on tombstones.
  • Usually brief and rhyming.



  • Poem made up of quatrains in a tetrameter.
  • Each line has 8 syllables.
  • The lines of each quatrain are mono-rhymed.
  • The poem is at least one quatrain long, with no maximum limit.


Nonet Poem

  • The poem has 9 lines.
  • Starting with 9 syllables in line one, the number of syllables successfully reduces by one from the first to the last line— line 9 has 9 syllables, line 8 has 8 syllables, line seven has 7 syllables, and so on till line 9 remains with one syllable.


Landay Poem

  • Poems made up of self-contained couplet; the poem can be one couplet or several couplets long.
  • Line one has 9 syllables, while line 2 has 13 syllables.
  • Common themes are love, grief, war, or separation.


Huitain Poems

  • Stanza has 8 lines.
  • Each line is typically 8-10 syllables long.
  • Stanza has a rhyme scheme ababbcbc.


Minute Poem

  • A poem with 3 quatrains whose lines are written in iambic meter.
  • The first line of each stanza has 8 syllables.
  • Lines 2-4 of each stanza have 4 syllables each.
  • They have rhyme schemes of aabb, ccdd, eeff.