free verse poetry
There are many different types of poetry, each with its own style and structure. Free verse poetry, however, doesn’t follow any specific rhyme scheme or meter (most of the time).
The purpose of free verse poetry is to express your thoughts and feelings, whether they be happy or sad, in as natural a way as possible – it just flows naturally from you onto the page.
Free verse doesn’t necessarily have to rhyme; it just has to sound good and flow well.
Here is some useful information about free verse poetry that will help you understand it and use it to express your thoughts and feelings.
Table of Contents
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What is Free Verse Poetry?
Free verse poetry is a type of poetry that does not follow a specific rhyme scheme or meter.
This type of poetry has a natural flow to it and can be less structured than other types of poetry.
Many poets choose to write in free verse because it allows them to express their thoughts and feelings in a way no other poetry form can.
Why write free verse poetry?
In today’s society, people are constantly bombarded with stimuli. There is always something to see, hear, touch, taste, or smell.
With so much going on, it can be hard to slow down and appreciate the simple things in life. However, free verse poetry can help people do just that.
Free verse poetry is a type of poetry that does not follow any set rules or patterns. It is usually written in a natural way, without rhyming or meter.
This makes it easy to read and understand. Free verse poetry can be about anything; there are no limits to what you can write about.
It’s a great way to express yourself and your thoughts. It can also be used as a form of therapy to help you deal with stress or other problems in your life.
The Benefits of Writing in Free Verse
There are many benefits to writing in free verse.
- Free verse allows the writer to explore different linguistic and syntactical possibilities, while also freeing them from the constrictions of traditional meter and rhyme schemes.
- Free verse leads to a more expressive and innovative use of language, as well as a greater sense of freedom and flexibility in one’s writing.
- Free verse can be more accessible to readers, as it can be less challenging to follow than traditional poetry forms.
- Free verse allows the writer to create unique and powerful images that resonate with readers on a deep level.
- Free verse is flexibility-there are no rules to follow, so the writer can focus on crafting the perfect message without worrying about rhyme schemes or meter.
The challenges of writing free verse poetry
When it comes to writing poetry, there are different schools of thought. Some people believe that all poems should rhyme, while others believe that poems can be just as beautiful without rhyming.
Free verse poetry is a type of poetry that doesn’t follow any set rules or patterns. This can be both a good and a bad thing.
On the one hand, not having to worry about rhyming can make the writing process a lot easier and more enjoyable.
You can simply let the words flow out of you without worrying about making them fit into a specific pattern.
However, on the other hand, not having any rules can also make it harder to know when a poem is actually finished.
It can be tempting to keep adding more and more lines until the poem feels like it’s dragging on and on.
Three famous free verse poems
Some examples of free verse poets are Walt Whitman, T.S. Eliot, and Allen Ginsberg. These poets often times wrote about topics that were considered taboo or controversial in their day, and their use of free verse allowed them to explore these topics in a more open way.
Some of the most famous free verse poems include “The Naming of Cats” by T.S. Eliot, “A Girl” by Ezra Pound, and “Ode to a Nightingale” by John Keats.
These poems are all examples of how free verse can be used to create beautiful and evocative works of art.
1. The Naming of Cats by T. S. Eliot
The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter, It isn’t just one of your holiday games; You may think at first I’m as mad as a hatter When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES. First of all, there’s the name that the family use daily, Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo, or James, Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey— All of them sensible everyday names. There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter, Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames: Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter— But all of them sensible everyday names, But I tell you, a cat needs a name that’s particular, A name that’s peculiar, and more dignified, Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular, Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride? Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum, Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat, Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum— Names that never belong to more than one cat. But above and beyond there’s still one name left over, And that is the name that you never will guess; The name that no human research can discover— But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess. When you notice a cat in profound meditation, The reason, I tell you, is always the same: His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name: His ineffable effable Effanineffable Deep and inscrutable singular name.
2. A Girl by Ezra Pound
The tree has entered my hands, The sap has ascended my arms, The tree has grown in my breast - Downward, The branches grow out of me, like arms. Tree you are, Moss you are, You are violets with wind above them. A child - so high - you are, And all this is folly to the world.
3. Ode to a Nightengale by John Keats
My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk, Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk: 'Tis not through envy of thy happy lot, But being too happy in thine happiness,— That thou, light-winged Dryad of the trees In some melodious plot Of beechen green, and shadows numberless, Singest of summer in full-throated ease. O, for a draught of vintage! that hath been Cool'd a long age in the deep-delved earth, Tasting of Flora and the country green, Dance, and Provençal song, and sunburnt mirth! O for a beaker full of the warm South, Full of the true, the blushful Hippocrene, With beaded bubbles winking at the brim, And purple-stained mouth; That I might drink, and leave the world unseen, And with thee fade away into the forest dim: Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget What thou among the leaves hast never known, The weariness, the fever, and the fret Here, where men sit and hear each other groan; Where palsy shakes a few, sad, last gray hairs, Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies; Where but to think is to be full of sorrow And leaden-eyed despairs, Where Beauty cannot keep her lustrous eyes, Or new Love pine at them beyond to-morrow. Away! away! for I will fly to thee, Not charioted by Bacchus and his pards, But on the viewless wings of Poesy, Though the dull brain perplexes and retards: Already with thee! tender is the night, And haply the Queen-Moon is on her throne, Cluster'd around by all her starry Fays; But here there is no light, Save what from heaven is with the breezes blown Through verdurous glooms and winding mossy ways. I cannot see what flowers are at my feet, Nor what soft incense hangs upon the boughs, But, in embalmed darkness, guess each sweet Wherewith the seasonable month endows The grass, the thicket, and the fruit-tree wild; White hawthorn, and the pastoral eglantine; Fast fading violets cover'd up in leaves; And mid-May's eldest child, The coming musk-rose, full of dewy wine, The murmurous haunt of flies on summer eves. Darkling I listen; and, for many a time I have been half in love with easeful Death, Call'd him soft names in many a mused rhyme, To take into the air my quiet breath; Now more than ever seems it rich to die, To cease upon the midnight with no pain, While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad In such an ecstasy! Still wouldst thou sing, and I have ears in vain— To thy high requiem become a sod. Thou wast not born for death, immortal Bird! No hungry generations tread thee down; The voice I hear this passing night was heard In ancient days by emperor and clown: Perhaps the self-same song that found a path Through the sad heart of Ruth, when, sick for home, She stood in tears amid the alien corn; The same that oft-times hath Charm'd magic casements, opening on the foam Of perilous seas, in faery lands forlorn. Forlorn! the very word is like a bell To toll me back from thee to my sole self! Adieu! the fancy cannot cheat so well As she is fam'd to do, deceiving elf. Adieu! adieu! thy plaintive anthem fades Past the near meadows, over the still stream, Up the hill-side; and now 'tis buried deep In the next valley-glades: Was it a vision, or a waking dream? Fled is that music:—Do I wake or sleep?
Modern free verse poems
A lot of people think that free verse poetry is just putting words together without rhyming, but it’s so much more than that!
Free verse poetry is about being creative with your words and not being afraid to experiment.
Here are some examples of free verse poetry that will hopefully inspire you to start writing your own!
4. What Do You See by Qwanza Bentinck
When he looks at me, He sees a girl who just want some attention, One whom he can call upon when he feels like And she will come running like a fool. Yes, a fool desperate and thirsty for love. When you look at me, You see someone you want to spend The rest of your life with; Wife and mother of your children. One whom you will love and care for with all your might. The one you expect to return the same love to you. When I look at myself, I see a woman who desires so much more. A woman who is destined for greater things. A woman who will be the wife and mother God wants her to be. A woman of great significance and loyalty. A woman who was made out of love! What do you see?
5. Accent by Rupi Kaur
my voice is the offspring of two countries colliding what is there to be ashamed of if english and my mother tongue made love my voice is her father’s words and mother’s accent what does it matter if my mouth carries two worlds
6. Ash Angels by Atticus
There we were making rhythms, jumping ahead of earth's own heart beat, setting new time to our universe, and we drank it in like warming wine. We the children, running to deserts, pockets full of magic, with whisky spirits and our souls in our wings. Us few the bold, the brave trodden souls, tobacco stinging bright our gypsy eyes, kaleidoscopes reaching fingers through our minds to stir our coloured dreams. Our dusty hearts set aflame by setting stars and shooting suns. And here the sparks became our loves, and so with them we danced up, into airless skies and cloudless nights, to make ash angles on moons, and snowflakes of milky ways.
7. Androids by r. A. bentinck
We bury ourselves and our lives in the technologies While silently selling our humanity. We are all lost in this theater of control; Educated fools Turned into tools To become mules In a high-tech game of shifting algorithms. We are systematically dumb down Becoming conditioned beings. We are slowly becoming Androids! Worshipers of technological idols Neglecting The Almighty, friends, and family. We are passionately in love with gadgets, While our disdain for humanity grows slowly. The smart devices controls our time and attention We are suckers to flickering screens We are living in ‘The Matrix.'- Programmed to serve, Programmed to kill, Programmed to hate all that is naturally us. We are buying their pills, Too indoctrinated to see that we drifting from humanity. We have become consumers, not creators. We are conditioned to respond instantaneously To every beeping notification, Brainwashed into being click addicts, We are human resources on this tech plantation, Spinning-out profits for the Globalist. We kill our messengers, Criticise our liberators, And celebrate the acquisition of an updated device. Too programmed to see ourselves Beyond the screens, The beeps, And constant alerts. Bombarded with ‘smart this.' And ‘smart that.' While we are slowly becoming the ‘dumb this.' and the ‘dumb that.' We are slaves, Android slaves on this technological plantation
How to Write in Free Verse
When writing in free verse, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- First, free verse does not have a set meter or rhyme scheme. This means that the poet has a lot of freedom when it comes to the structure of the poem.
- Second, even though there is no set meter, free verse poems still have a rhythm. This is created by the poet using different techniques, such as varying the length of the lines or using repetition.
- free verse relies on natural speech patterns rather than a rigid meter or rhyme schemes, so pay attention to the rhythms of your own speaking voice and try to replicate them in your writing.
- To write in free verse, start by brainstorming a list of potential subjects or themes. Once you have your subject, begin writing without worrying about rhyme or meter.
- Once you have a few ideas, start putting them into sentence form. You can rearrange your sentences later if needed.
The Pros and Cons of Free Verse Poetry
- Free verse poetry allows the writer to express themselves without the constraints of traditional poetic forms.
- It can be easier to write free verse poetry as it does not require adherence to specific rules and structures.
- Free verse poetry can be more accessible to readers as it is often less complex than other types of poetry.
- Writing free verse can be a more freeing and liberating experience for the writer.
- It can be easier to communicate emotion and feeling in free verse poetry.
- Free verse poetry can sometimes lack the structure and organization of other types of poetry.
- It can be difficult to create a well-crafted free verse poem as there are no set rules to follow.
- Free verse poetry can be seen as less sophisticated than other types of poetry by some people.
- Some writers may find it harder to express themselves within the confines of free verse.
Concluding Thoughts on Free Verse Poetry
Overall, because of free verse poetry’s less structured style, allows for a natural flow to writing them.
This type of poem allows poets to express their thoughts and feelings more freely than other types of poetry do.
Free verse also allows writers to take risks with the language they use which can lead to some beautiful poems.