Poetry Form : Lyric

Lyric Poem

A lyric poem or lyrical poem in literature is a poem in which the poet either expresses his feelings and emotions. The poet also presents a character in the first person to express his emotions. It is a combination of lyric and poetry where a piece of poetry is written as a lyric. Lyric has been derived from lyre, a musical stringed instrument used during the Grecian period to accompany the poetry sung during different festivities.

Aristotle used the world lyric or lyrical with reference poetry to categorize it into three distinct types. A lyric poem is often short and non-narrative but keeps some elements of melody. Although odes and elegies are other categories, they, too, are placed under the lyric poetry. Lyric poems can follow any metrical pattern, be it iambic, trochaic, or pyrrhic.

An iamb is a literary device that can be defined as a foot containing unaccented and short syllables, followed by a long and accented syllable in a single line of a poem (unstressed/stressed syllables). Two of Robert Frost’s poems, Dust of Snow, and The Road not Taken are considered two of the most popular examples of iamb.

Trochaic an adjective of trochee is a metrical foot composed of two syllables; stressed followed by an unstressed syllable. This rhythmic unit is used to make up the lines of poetry. However, it is deliberately inserted to make the text sound different. The material pattern of trochee is composed of “falling rhythm” as the stress is at the beginning of the foot. It, however, plays a great role when writing about dark subjects like madness and death. Etymologically, trochee is derived from a Greek word, “trokhaios” which means ‘to run.’

Types of Trochaic Meter
Trochaic Tetrameter: It is a type of meter consisting of four stressed syllables per line. For example, “By the shores of Gitche Gu”.
Trochaic Heptamer: It is a type of meter consisting of seven stressed syllables per line. Such as, “Now Sam McGee was from Tennessee, where the cotton blooms and”.
Trochaic Pentameter: It is a type of meter consisting of five stressed syllables per line. “And the lamp-light o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor”.
Iambic Trimeter: It is a type of meter consisting of three stressed syllables per line. For example, “This has neither wax nor”.
Catalexis: The absence of a syllable in the final foot in a line is called catalexis.

Pyrrhic meter
A metrical unit consisting of two unstressed syllables, in accentual-syllabic verse, or two short syllables, in quantitative meter. Though regularly found in classical Greek poetry, pyrrhic meter is not generally used in modern systems of prosody: unaccented syllables are instead grouped with surrounding feet. Andrew Marvell’s “The Garden” contains examples of pyrrhic meter, here in bold: “To a green thought in a green shade.”

So we have the technical information on Lyric poetry. I gathered the above from other websites (all listed below). Lyric poetry is often the basis for songs. Not always, but often. I normally don’t use the writing from other sites, even though I am citing the sources… But I wanted to give you information on a form that I don’t use. I have no skill with lyric poetry.

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