A Poetry Handbook by Mary Oliver

My way of celebrating National Poetry Month

Who knew that A Poetry Handbook would be good for so many new words?

This week, I learned words that describe rhyme from page 59 of A Poetry Handbook by Mary Oliver.

I would have guessed couplet — that’s just when line 1 rhymes with line 2 and line 3 rhymes with line 4 (aa bb cc dd, etc). Tercet, or triplet is the same, only with three rhyming lines (aaa bbb ccc ddd, etc).

I remember the word quatrain, but I didn’t remember the rhyming pattern — it’s abab cdcd, etc.

I don’t recall ever hearing the term terza rima (according to Wikipedia, I would have if I’d ever studied Dante). The scheme is aba bcb cdc ded, etc. That looks like it would be fun to write, or a big head ache, depending on the mood of the poet.

Did you remember these terms? Or ever learn them in the first place?

button for Wondrous Words Wednesday memeWondrous Words Wednesday is hosted by Bermudaonion’s Weblog. Kathy says: “Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where we share new (to us) words that we’ve encountered in our reading.”

Signature of Joy Weese Moll


But does it rhyme with orange? #WondrousWordsWednesday — 6 Comments

  1. I remember the alphabetical diagrams for various poetry but I couldn’t recall what they are called. I haven’t studied Dantes either but I’d like to check it out to see what terza looks like. I agree it sounds like it would be fun to try it.

    I’ve enjoyed your poetry month’s look at the Handbook. Great set of posts.

  2. Thanks for the review Joy! I knew couplet- Shakespeare has Romeo speak in rhyming couplets to emphasize his importance. Terza rima is completely new, and I read Dante (many years ago…). Now to go check on last week’s post…

  3. Oh My, it’s been way too long ago that I studied the workings of poetry. I guess it’s nice the different rhymes have names. Couplet makes sense, though I am sure I did not know quatrain. Wonder if I’ll remember any of them later?

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