Incremental Poetry

Exploring new forms one line at a time…

This is sort of a sampler of the hundreds of forms I have come across. Some are limited to the line length specified while others are merely useful for that length. The links below take you to poems I have written in these forms. These are not tutorials per se, nor were they presented as challenges. But I have included them here because for each of them I gave a brief explanation of the form so that you may write one of your own, if you feel so inclined.

  • 1 Line ~ 6-Word Memoir ~ summarizing my day in six words (an exercise in conciseness)
  • 2 Lines ~ Doha ~ a Hindi stanzaic couplet
  • 3 Lines ~ Brevette ~ a short unrhymed tercet
  • 4 Lines ~ Modified nursery rhyme ~ taking an original nursery rhyme and making a few humorous changes (an exercise in creativity)
  • 5 Lines ~ Emmett ~ the first word also appears as the first word of every line
  • 6 Lines ~ Double Acrostic ~ the title appears at both the beginning and the end of each line (may be any length)
  • 7 Lines ~ Pleiades ~ 7-line stanza in which the first word of each line alliterates with the 1-word title
  • 8 Lines ~ The Abercrombie ~ a stanzaic form (may have multiple 8-line stanzas) using sprung rhythm and an interlocking rhyme scheme
  • 9 LinesAmaranth ~ makes deliberate use of the 9 most common metric feet, one per line
  • 10 LinesEgg Timer ~ a decastich that is a mirror image of itself
  • 11 LinesShoe Laces ~ an 11-line poem that alternates between iambic tetrameter and iambic monameter
  • 12 LinesRondine ~ The beginning of Line 1 is repeated twice as a refrain.
  • 13 LinesChaucerian Roundel ~ a tercet, quatrain, and sestet with a refrain
  • 14 LinesWord Sonnet ~ one word per line
  • 15 LinesCompound Word Verse ~ The third line of each tercet is a compound word related to a word in the title.
  • 16 LinesDomino Rhyme ~ The object is to give the feel of an unrhymed poem by keeping the rhymes distant from one another.
  • 17 LinesLucubration ~ a 17-line poem with a very strict structure
  • 18 LinesRhyming Wave ~ mimics the motion of the waves upon the shore
  • 19 LinesTerzanelle ~ a 19-line poem with an interlocking rhyme scheme, a cross between the Terza Rima and the Villanelle
  • 20 LinesThe Balance ~ has an ebb-and-flow rhythm and a closing refrain
  • 21 LinesDiminishing Hexaverse ~ both lines and stanza diminish in length
  • 22 LinesChain of Abolition ~ has an increasing stanza length and an external rhyme scheme with an interesting twist
  • 23 LinesDaisy Chain ~ the last word of each line appears as the first word of the next line; may be any length
  • 24 LinesCouplet Chain ~ a series of open and closed rhyming couplets (may be any number of couplets)
  • 25 LinesFree Verse ~ an unrhymed, unmetered poem
  • 26 LinesAlpha Beta ~ a poem in which each line begins with a consecutive letter of the alphabet
  • 27 Lines ~ Quintina ~ a quintet version of the Sestina, with the same 5 end words repeated in varying order in each stanza, and concluded with an envoy