Poetry Vocabulary Terms

Topic: LifeFamily
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Last updated: December 15, 2019
alliteration
the repetition of sounds, most often consonant sounds, at the beginning of words

assonance
the repetition of similar vowel sounds within non-rhyming words

atmosphere
mood or emotional quality of a literary work

ballad
song or poem that tells a story

blank verse
verse written in unrhymed lines of iambic pentameter

cinquain
a five line poem or stanza that follows a pattern of syllables

consonance
repetition of consonant sound before or after different vowel sounds

dramatic poetry
poetry that uses elements of drama

epic
long narrative poem on a great and serious subject centered on the actions of a heroic figure

figurative language
language used for descriptive effect often to apply ideas indirectly

free verse
poetry that has no fixed pattern of meter, rhyme, line length, or stanza arrangement

haiku
traditional form of Japanese poetry containing 3 lines and 17 syllables

hero
the main character in a literary work, typically one whose character or deeds inspire the admiration of the reader

hyperbole
extreme exaggeration

iambic pentameter
rhythm pattern with 5 units (feet) each of which has an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable

idiom
a word or phrase that has a special meaning different from its standard or dictionary meaning; usually unique to a region or people

line
a word or row of words that may or may not complete a sentence

lyric poetry
poetry that expresses a speaker’s personal thought and feelings

metaphor
compares two or more things without using the words “like” or “as”

meter
a regular pattern of stressed syllables in a line of poetry

mood
the feeling or atmosphere that an author creates in a literary work

narrative poetry
poetry that tells a story

onomatopoeia
a word that sounds like the sound it is describing

oxymoron
a figure of speech that is a combination of two opposites

personification
giving human characteristics to non-human objects

repetition
a literary device in which sounds, words, phrases, lines, or stanzas are repeated for emphasis in a poem or other literary work

rhyme
repetition of the same sounds within a line of poetry, but usually at the end

rhyme scheme
the pattern that end rhymes form in a stanza or poem

rhythm
pattern of sound created by the arrangement of stressed and unstressed syllables, especially in poetry

simile
a figure of speech using the words “like” or “as” to compare seemingly unlike things

sonnet
a lyric poem of 14 lines written in iambic pentameter and following strict patterns of stanza division and rhyme

speaker
the voice of a poem

stanza
group of lines that forms a unit within a poem

symbol
an object, person, place, or an experience that represents something else, usually something abstract

theme
the main idea or message of a literary work

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