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1. The act or practice of composing poems.
a. Poems regarded as forming a division of literature.
b. The poetic works of a given author, group, nation, or kind.
3. Literature written in meter; verse.
4. Prose that resembles a poem in some respect, as in vivid imagery or rhythmic sound.
5. The essence or characteristic quality of a poem: "It is impossible to separate the 'poetry' in Paradise Lost from the peculiar doctrines that it enshrines" (T.S. Eliot).
6. A quality that suggests poetry, as in grace, beauty, or harmony: the poetry of the dancer's movements.

[Middle English poetrie, from Old French, from Medieval Latin poētria, from Latin poēta, poet; see poet.]


1. (Poetry) literature in metrical form; verse
2. (Poetry) the art or craft of writing verse
3. poetic qualities, spirit, or feeling in anything
4. anything resembling poetry in rhythm, beauty, etc
[C14: from Medieval Latin poētria, from Latin poēta poet]


(ˈpoʊ ɪ tri)

1. literary work in metrical form; poetic works; poems; verse.
2. the art of writing poems.
3. prose with poetic qualities.
4. poetic qualities however manifested.
5. poetic spirit or feeling.
6. something suggestive of poetry.
[1350–1400; Middle English poetrie < Medieval Latin poētria poetic art, derivative of poēta poet]


  • found poem - A passage within prose that unintentionally reads like poetry.
  • stich - A line of poetry.
  • free verse - Poetry that does not rhyme or have a regular meter.
  • metrophobia - The fear of poetry.




  1. All good verses are like impromptus made at leisure —Joseph Joubert
  2. Composed poetry … like a dancer working at the barre, continually exercising the power of imagining, like a muscle that demanded flexing and stretching —Arthur A. Cohen
  3. Explaining how you write poetry … it’s like going round explaining how you sleep with your wife —Phillip Larkin
  4. He [the poet] approaches lucid ground warily, like a mariner who is determined not to scrape his bottom on anything solid. A poet’s pleasure is to withhold a little of his meaning, to intensify by mystification —E. B. White
  5. Like science, poetry must fix its thought in thing and symbol —Dilys Laing
  6. Like a piece of ice on a hot stove the poem must ride on its own melting —Robert Frost
  7. Like marijuana smoke are poet’s verses —Jaroslav Seifert
  8. Poems are like people … there are not many authentic ones around —Robert Graves
  9. The poet is like the prince of the clouds who rides the tempest … exiled on the ground, amidst boos and insults, his giant’s wings prevent his walking —Charles Baudelaire
  10. Poetry is like light —Delmore Schwartz
  11. Poetry is like painting; one piece takes your fancy if you stand close to it, another if you keep at some distance —Horace
  12. Poetry … is like spray blown by some wind from a heaving sea, or like sparks blown from a smouldering fire: a cry which the violence of circumstances wrings from some poor fellow —George Santayana
  13. Poets … are conductors of the senses of men, as teachers and preachers are the insulators —Karl Shapiro

    The simile is taken from a prose poem entitled As You Say (not without sadness), Poets Don’t See They Feel It contains another simile which sheds light on the poet as one who strips away insulation: “He pulls at the seams [of insulation] like a boy whose trousers are cutting him in half.”

  14. Poets are like baseball pitchers. Both have their moments. The intervals are the tough things —Robert Frost
  15. Publishing a volume of verse is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo —Don Marquis, The Sun Dial, 1878
  16. Rhymes you as fast as a sailor will swear —Babette Deutsch

    The simile is from a poem honoring John Skelton.

  17. They [poets] are honored and ignored like famous dead Presidents —Delmore Schwartz
  18. To try to read a poem with the eyes of the first reader who read it is like trying to see a landscape without the atmosphere that clothes it —W. Somerset Maugham
  19. To write a lyric is like having a fit, you can’t have one when you wish you could … and you can’t help having it when it comes itself —Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
  20. Writing free verse is like playing tennis with the net down —Robert Frost
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.poetry - literature in metrical formpoetry - literature in metrical form    
hush, stillness, still - (poetic) tranquil silence; "the still of the night"
epos - a body of poetry that conveys the traditions of a society by treating some epic theme
literary genre, writing style, genre - a style of expressing yourself in writing
epic poetry, heroic poetry - poetry celebrating the deeds of some hero
dolor, dolour - (poetry) painful grief
Erin - an early name of Ireland that is now used in poetry
lyric - write lyrics for (a song)
relyric - write new lyrics for (a song)
rhyme, rime - compose rhymes
tag - supply (blank verse or prose) with rhymes
alliterate - use alliteration as a form of poetry
poetise, poetize, verse, versify - compose verses or put into verse; "He versified the ancient saga"
metrify - compose in poetic meter; "The bard metrified his poems very precisely"
spondaise, spondaize - make spondaic; "spondaize verses"
elegise, elegize - compose an elegy
sonnet - compose a sonnet
sonnet - praise in a sonnet
scan - conform to a metrical pattern
lyric - of or relating to a category of poetry that expresses emotion (often in a songlike way); "lyric poetry"
sweet, sweetly - in an affectionate or loving manner (`sweet' is sometimes a poetic or informal variant of `sweetly'); "Susan Hayward plays the wife sharply and sweetly"; "how sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank"- Shakespeare; "talking sweet to each other"
2.poetry - any communication resembling poetry in beauty or the evocation of feeling
expressive style, style - a way of expressing something (in language or art or music etc.) that is characteristic of a particular person or group of people or period; "all the reporters were expected to adopt the style of the newspaper"


noun verse, poems, rhyme, rhyming, poesy (archaic), verse composition, metrical composition the poetry of Thomas Hardy
"Poetry is a kind of ingenious nonsense" [Isaac Barrow]
"Poetry is what gets lost in translation" [Robert Frost]
"Poetry is a search for ways of communication; it must be conducted with openness, flexibility, and a constant readiness to listen" [Fleur Adcock]
"Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings; it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquillity" [William Wordsworth Lyrical Ballads (preface)]
"Poetry is at bottom a criticism of life" [Matthew Arnold Essays in Criticism]
"Poetry is a subject as precise as geometry" [Gustave Flaubert letter]
"Poetry is a way of taking life by the throat" [Robert Frost]
"As civilization advances, poetry almost necessarily declines" [Lord Macaulay Essays]
"Poetry (is) a speaking picture, with this end; to teach and delight" [Sir Philip Sidney The Defence of Poetry]
"Poetry is truth in its Sunday clothes" [Joseph Roux Meditations of a Parish Priest]
"Prose = words in their best order; poetry = the best words in their best order" [Samuel Taylor Coleridge Table Talk]
"Imaginary gardens with real toads in them" [Marianne Moore Poetry]
"Poetry is something more philosophical and more worthy of serious attention than history" [Aristotle Poetics]
"Prose is when all the lines except the last go on to the end. Poetry is when some of them fall short of it" [Jeremy Bentham]
"I am two fools, I know,"
"For loving, and for saying so"
"In whining poetry" [John Donne The Triple Fool]
"Poetry's a mere drug, Sir" [George Farquhar Love and a Battle]
"If poetry comes not as naturally as the leaves to a tree it had better not come at all" [John Keats letter]
"Writing a book of poetry is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo" [Don Marquis]
"Most people ignore most poetry"
"most poetry ignores most people" [Adrian Mitchell Poems]
"All that is not prose is verse; and all that is not verse is prose" [Molière Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme]
"it is not poetry, but prose run mad" [Alexander Pope An Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot]


Poetry and prosody terms  accentual metre, accentual-syllabic metre or stress-syllabic metre, Adonic, Alcaic, Alexandrine, alliteration, amoebaean or amoebean, amphibrach, amphimacer, anacrusis, arsis, anapaest or anapest, anapaestic or anapestic, antistrophe, assonance, bacchius, ballad stanza, blank verse, bob, cadence or cadency, caesura or cesura, canto, catalectic, choriamb or choriambus, closed couplet, common measure, common metre, consonance or consonancy, couplet, cretic or amphimacer, dactyl, dactylic, diaeresis or dieresis, dipody, distich, elision, end-stopped, enjambement, envoy or envoi, epode, eye rhyme, feminine ending, feminine rhyme, foot, free verse or vers libre, half-rhyme, hemistich, heptameter, heptastich, heroic couplet, hexameter, hypermeter, iamb or iambus, iambic, ictus, internal rhyme, ionic, jabberwocky, leonine rhyme, long metre, macaronic, masculine ending, masculine rhyme, metre, octameter, octave or octet, onomatopoeia, ottava rima, paeon, paeonic, pararhyme, pentameter, pentastich, perfect rhyme or full rhyme, Pindaric, pyhrric, quantitative metre, quatrain, quintain or quintet, refrain, rhyme, rhyme royal, rhyme scheme, rhythm, rime riche, Sapphic, scansion, septet, sestet, sestina or sextain, short metre, Spenserian stanza, spondee, spondaic, sprung rhythm, stanza, stichic, strophe, syllabic metre, tercet, terza rima, tetrabrach, tetrameter, tetrapody, tetrastich, triplet, trochaic, trochee, unstopped, verse paragraph, wheel
Poetry movements and groupings  Alexandrians, Decadents, Georgian Poets, imagists, Lake Poets, Liverpool Poets, Metaphysical Poets, the Movement, Petrarchans, Romantics, Scottish Chaucerians, symbolists
Poets  Dannie Abse (Welsh), (Karen) Fleur Adcock (New Zealander), Conrad (Potter) Aiken (U.S.), Anna Akhamatova (Russian), Maya Angelou (U.S.), Guillaume Apollinaire (French), Ludovico Ariosto (Italian), Matthew Arnold (English), W(ystan) H(ugh) Auden (English-U.S.), Charles Pierre Baudelaire (French), Patricia Beer (English), Hilaire Belloc (British), John Berryman (U.S.), John Betjeman (English), Elizabeth Bishop (U.S.), William Blake (English), Edmund Blunden (English), Joseph Brodsky (Russian-American), Rupert (Chawner) Brooke (English), Gwendolyn Brooks (U.S.), Elizabeth Barrett Browning (English), Robert Browning (English), Robert Burns (Scottish), (George Gordon) Byron (British), Callimachus (Greek), Luis Vaz de Camoëns (Portuguese), Thomas Campion (English), Raymond Carver (U.S.), Gaius Valerius Catullus (Roman), Charles Causley (English), Geoffrey Chaucer (English), Amy Clampitt (U.S.), John Clare (English), Samuel Taylor Coleridge (English), William Cowper (English), George Crabbe (English), e(dward) e(stlin) cummings (U.S.), Dante (Alighieri) (Italian), Cecil Day Lewis (Irish), Walter de la Mare (English), Emily Dickinson (U.S.), John Donne (English), H D (Hilda Doolittle) (U.S.), John Dryden (English), Carol Ann Duffy (Scottish), William Dunbar (Scottish), Douglas Dunn (Scottish), Geoffrey Dutton (Australian), T(homas) S(tearns) Eliot (U.S.-British), Ebenezer Elliot (the Corn Law Rhymer) (English), Paul Éluard (French), Ralph Waldo Emerson (U.S.), William Empson (English), Edward Fitzgerald (English), Robert Fitzgerald (Australian), Robert (Lee) Frost (U.S.), Allen Ginsberg (U.S.), Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (German), Robert Graves (English), Thomas Gray (English), Thom Gunn (English), Seamus Heaney (Irish), Adrian Henri (English), Robert Henryson (Scottish), George Herbert (English), Robert Herrick (English), Hesiod (Greek), Geoffrey Hill (English), Ralph Hodgson (English), Homer (Greek), Thomas Hood (English), Gerard Manley Hopkins (English), Horace (Roman), A(lfred) E(dward) Housman (English), Ted Hughes (English), Elizabeth Jennings (English), Samuel Johnson (English), Ben Jonson (English), Juvenal (Roman), Patrick Kavanagh (Irish), John Keats (English), Sidney Keyes (English), (Joseph) Rudyard Kipling (English), Jean de La Fontaine (French), Alphonse Marie Louis de Prat de Lamartine (French), Walter Savage Landor (English), William Langland (English), Philip Larkin (English), Tom Leonard (Scottish), Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (U.S.), Amy Lowell (U.S.), Robert Lowell (U.S.), Richard Lovelace (English), Lucretius (Roman), Thomas Macauley (English), Norman MacCaig (Scottish), Hugh MacDiarmid (Scottish), Roger McGough (English), Sorley MacLean (Scottish), Louis MacNeice (Irish), Stéphane Mallarmé (French), Martial (Roman), Andrew Marvell (English), John Masefield (English), Edna St Vincent Millay (U.S.), John Milton (English), Marianne Moore (U.S.), Edwin Morgan (Scottish), Andrew Motion (English), Edwin Muir (Scottish), Ogden Nash (U.S.), Pablo Neruda (Chilean), Frank O'Hara (U.S.), Omar Khayyam (Persian), Ovid (Roman), Wilfred Owen (British), Brian Patten (English), Octavio Paz (Mexican), Petrarch (Italian), Pindar (Greek), Sylvia Plath (U.S.), Alexander Pope (English), Peter Porter (Australian), Ezra (Loomis) Pound (U.S.), Sextus Propertius (Roman), Aleksander Sergeyevich Pushkin (Russian), Kathleen Raine (English), Adrienne Rich (U.S.), Laura Riding (U.S.), Rainer Maria Rilke (Austro-German), Arthur Rimbaud (French), (John Wilmot) Rochester (English), Theodore Huebner Roethke (U.S.), Isaac Rosenberg (English), Christina Georgina Rossetti (English), Dante Gabriel Rossetti (English), Saint-John Perse (French), Sappho (Greek), Siegfried Sassoon (English), Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller (German), Delmore Schwarz (U.S.), Sir Walter Scott (Scottish), Jaroslav Seifert (Czech), William Shakespeare (English), Percy Bysshe Shelley (English), Sir Philip Sidney (English), Edith Sitwell (English), John Skelton (English), Christopher Smart (English), Stevie Smith (English), Robert Southey (English), Stephen Spender (English), Edmund Spenser (English), Wallace Stevens (U.S.), Algernon Charles Swinburne (English), Wislawa Szymborska (Polish), Torquato Tasso (Italian), Alfred, Lord Tennyson (English), Dylan (Marlais) Thomas (Welsh), Edward Thomas (English), R(onald) S(tuart) Thomas (Welsh), James Thomson (Scottish), Paul Verlaine (French), Alfred Victor de Vigny (French), François Villon (French), Virgil (Roman), Derek Walcott (West Indian), Francis Charles Webb (Australian), Walt Whitman (U.S.), William Wordsworth (English), Judith Wright (Australian), Thomas Wyatt (English), W(illiam) B(utler) Yeats (Irish)


1. A poetic work or poetic works:
2. Something likened to poetry, as in form or style:
الشِّعْرشِعْرشِعْر، قَصائِد
kveîskapur, ljóîagerîskáldskapur
şiirşiir yazma
thơ ca


A. Npoesía f
poetry in motionpoesía f en movimiento
B. CPD poetry magazine Nrevista f de poesía
poetry reading Nrecital m or lectura f de poesías


npoésie f
modif [prize, competition, magazine, book] → de poésiepoetry reading nlecture f de poèmes


Dichtung f; (not epic also) → Lyrik f; to write poetryGedichte schreiben, dichten; the rules of poetrydie Regeln der Versdichtung; poetry readingDichterlesung f
(fig)Poesie f; the dancing was poetry in motionder Tanz war in Bewegung umgesetzte Poesie; the sunset was sheer poetryder Sonnenuntergang war reinste Poesie


[ˈpəʊɪtrɪ] npoesia
to write poetry → scrivere (delle) poesie


(ˈpouit) feminine ˈpoet ~ˈpoetess noun
a person who writes poems.
poetic (pouˈetik) adjective
of, like, or suitable for, a poem. a poetic expression.
poˈetically adverb
ˈpoetry noun
1. poems in general. He writes poetry.
2. the art of composing poems. Poetry comes naturally to some people.


شِعْر poezie poesi Lyrik ποίηση poesía runous poésie poezija poesia 詩歌 poëzie poesi poezja poesia поэзия poesi บทกวี şiir thơ ca 诗篇
References in periodicals archive ?
LAHORE: Distinguished English and Urdu poet Harris Khalique had his latest collection of verse in English hit the stands amidst raving reviews.
South African poet Gabeba Baderoons fourth collection of verse impresses with its concision of language and clarity of ideas.
He also won the 'UBL Literary Excellence Award 2013' for his collection of verse Melay Mein (Urdu).
"The Book of Ballads & Sagas" is award-winning compendium of English and Scottish fairy tales and folklore that Titan Comics has brought back into print for a new generation of appreciative readers a sumptuous collection of verse that is beautifully illustrated by Vess and featuring adaptations of the ballad stories by Neil Gaiman (who was Vess' collaborator on the hugely successful Stardust) along with a host of famous fantasy writers.
When "Badan Dareeda", her second collection of verse, appeared in 1973, she was accused of using erotic and sensual expressions in her poetry.
A collection of verse to be browsed through time and time again, "American Western Love Song" is unreservedly recommended for the personal reading lists of poetry enthusiasts and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community, college, and university library Contemporary American Poetry collections.
RESIDENTS and visitors are invited to join poet Carolyn Jess-Cooke at Alnwick Library for a friendly and informal discussion on poetry and to hear more about a unique local collection of verse.
This is the most intoxicatingly intelligent collection of verse I have read in recent years, more opulent and less severe than, say, Miroslav Holub.
Synopsis: "Some Slow Bees" is poet Carol Potter's new collection of verse in which she focuses upon trouble, about loss: relationships, farms, parents, places.
In addition, Ali Smith won the Literary Book of the Year award for her novel How to be Both; Edinburgh-based poet Niall Campbell won the First Book of the Year award for his collection of verse, Moontide; fellow poet Alexander Hutchinson won the Saltire Scottish Poetry Book of the Year Award for the collection Bones & Breath; social historian Steve Bruce won the History Book of the Year category for his title Scottish Gods, Religion in the Modern Scotland 1900-2012; and Sandstone Press was crowned Publisher of the Year.
Saloy's first collection of verse, Red Beans and Ricely Yours: Poems, won the T.
In his new book "Black Irish" (A collection of Verse), now available on Amazon.com and Kindle, Roger Floyd has combined fiction and reality to create a world of haunting characters and shed a harsh light on the human condition.

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