Introduction to Writing Rhyming Poetry

Introduction to Writing Rhyming Poetry

A Lesson by Tomás Ó Cárthaigh

Why everyone is a poet, but only some are good poets...


Us Irish say that all of us are poets. The truth is that everyone on earth is a poet, but only some are good poets. Whether or not Im one of them, is for others to say!!!
The first thing you need for rhyming poetry of course is a command of rhymes, and there are many sites online which are great at helping those who are stuck in this field.

The next bit is to choose your pattern, the most common being abcb, where the first and third dont rhyme, but the second and fourth do, and use this for a stanza pattern.

After that comes to choosing a theme, a part we will explore later on. For now, we will just choose a theme of nature.

Say the "Wind" is our poem, on a nature theme, the second and fourth lines must rhyme, the first and third can, but need not. We will keep the sentences short, and the sentiment not too simple.

We ask ourselves, what can the wind do, and what message, if any, do we want the poem to deliver. We for this lesson will just have a two verse commenting on the wind being a caressing feeling, and the rhyme pattern is abcb efgf.

The wind blows soft
As is a whisper it does speak
And I feel its caress
Soft upon my cheek

I turn my face to the blowing wind
And bask in the summer breeze
The bliss of day in the summer sun
And a holiday of ease...
See in verse one, speak and cheek rhyme, and in verse two breeze and ease, the lines roughly are similar lenght, though metre is not taken into account. We will worry about that later...

What Not to Do:

Keep the pattern throughout the poem, dont vary.
Exception: if you have a stanza refrain.

Dont reuse the same word to make the rhyme again
Expetion: some types of poems repeat lines or words. But for starting, ignore that.

Essential Aid:
Download VersePerfect from McGill - google it!!!


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Added on February 7, 2011
Last Updated on February 7, 2011
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Tomás Ó Cárthaigh
Tomás Ó Cárthaigh

Renmore, Galway, Ireland, An Roinne Mór, Gallaimh, Eire, Ireland

I will soon be NINE years on this site - pity I lost a wealth of stuff in the 2008 crash... Read the rest of my work on my website