8 Unique Forms of Poetry 

March 21, 2023

By Sonakshi Kandhari

Poetry has been in existence since prehistoric times. To honour this unique art form, World Poetry Day is celebrated every year on the 21 March. Let's explore 8 unique forms of poetry this World Poetry Day.


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An ancient Japanese form of poetry that includes three lines. It is written to recreate a mood or instance, and is not rhymed. The first and third lines have five syllables each, while the second one has seven.

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Free Verse

This modern poetry form is not written in a particular set of stanzas or lines. Even rhyming is not compulsory when it comes to this form of poetry. Walt Whitman is regarded as the father of free verse poetry because he popularised it.

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Popularised by William Shakespeare, this form of poetry gets its name from the Italian word ‘sonetto’, which means a ‘little song’.' It is a one-stanza, 14-line poem that has been an integral part of English literature for centuries.

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In this kind of poem, the first letter of every line, when placed next to one another, forms a word, phrase or message. Edgar Allan Poe has many acrostic poems to his name, of which ‘An Acrostic Elizabeth Poem’ is a popular one.

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Unlike the other forms of poetry, this one doesn’t have any rules. These poems are written to mourn over the loss of someone or to express grief over an incident. ‘Fugue of Death by Paul Celan’ is an example of an elegy.

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A concrete poem is written in such a way that it takes a particular shape on the page. At times, the poem is even in the shape of its subject. An ideal example of one such poem is ‘The Altar by George Herbert’.

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Good for a short laugh; these poems are five- lines long. The first, second, and fifth lines are longer than the other two, and the last line is the punchline. This form of poetry was popularised by Edward Lear in the 19th century.

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A poem of this sort is not just written; it's performed with a musical instrument. These poems are written to praise a person, an event, or a thing. One famous example is "Ode on a Grecian Urn’ by John Keats, who was particularly fascinated by urns.

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