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There are three things, after all, that a poem must reach: the eye, the ear, and what we may call the heart of the mind. It is most important of all to reach the heart of the reader.  Robert Frost.

April is National Poetry Month, and, as a poet, I feel it is only fitting to write something about this art form.

What on earth, you ask, does poetry have to do with novel writing? A lot more than you might think.

Poetry is an art form that requires tight, polished, concise writing. Tight, polished writing and great word choices are hallmarks of an accomplished writer.

One of the best ways to learn how to write tight is through writing poetry. Poetry, by its very nature, demands succinct, visual words that tell a story quickly and powerfully. Even if you’ve never written poetry before you should take a stab at it. Remember, poetry doesn’t always have to rhyme. Here’s several interesting poetry forms to try your hand, or should I say, your pen at.

Lune Poems – A Lune poem is a poem that consists of three lines of 5/3/5 syllables, or a poem that has lines with 3/5/3 words. Lune poems can be rhymed or unrhymed.

5/3/5 syllables Lune Poems

The Choir

Singing with glad hearts

we praise God

for His mighty pow’r.

Catherine Castle

 

 

3/5/3/word Lune Poem

Baptized

Today I

am made new. I fly

on God’s side.

–Catherine Castle

Acrostic poem-An acrostic poem is a poem where the first letter of each line of the poem, read downward, form a word. Acrostics are easy to write. First you vertically write the word or phrase on the page, them go back in fill in the words using as many words as you like. Acrostics can be rhymed or unrhymed.

Salvation

Setting me free He laid himself

Against the tree and

Let them hammer the nails

Violently into innocent hands.  He died

And willingly gave up self,

Taking my sins onto his perfection.

If I had been in His place, would I have

Obeyed? And knowing his sacrifice

Now, how can I not?

Catherine Castle

Alphabet poem-An alphabet poem uses the letters of the alphabet in the poem. There are several kinds of alphabet poems. One type of poem takes a letter of the alphabet, looks at its appearance and writes a poem about the letter. For example the dot on the lowercase i looks like a child’s head. Or the letter M, turned sideways, looks like the open beak of a bird.

In another type of alphabet poem you might take a series of letters, for example A, B, C, D. or S, T, U, V, W, or any other sequence and write a poem where the first word of each line starts with one of those letters.

 

God’s Hand

Against the morning sky

Before the world awakens

Clearly I can see the

Deity’s hand. The reddened

Eastern sky is streaked by His

Fingertips. He stamps his fingerprint in

Gold as the blazing sun arises.

How can anyone who sees miss His

Imprint?

Catherine Castle

 

Another alphabet poem that can be a lot of fun to write makes every, or almost every word, in a line begin with the same letter. The alliteration, or repeating of the sounds, can make these poems fun to read aloud.

 

The Circus

Acrobats accentuating aerial acts on altitudinous wires

Balance bars and bicycles between the

Cable, catching careening caps of clowns cavorting

Down under death-defying dare devils.

Catherine Castle

Get the idea? Now try a few of your own. You might find it’s a lot of fun!

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