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Patterns of Poetry: An Encyclopedia of Forms

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Miller Williams' Patterns of Poetry is an encyclopedia of the forms used by poets throughout the history of English, from blank verse to hymnal measure, from englyn penfyr to the double dactyl, from the clerihew to the sonnet. Each form is introduced with a brief discussion of its origin, which is followed by a graphic presentation of its scansion, metrics, and rhyme schem Miller Williams' Patterns of Poetry is an encyclopedia of the forms used by poets throughout the history of English, from blank verse to hymnal measure, from englyn penfyr to the double dactyl, from the clerihew to the sonnet. Each form is introduced with a brief discussion of its origin, which is followed by a graphic presentation of its scansion, metrics, and rhyme scheme. Sample poems show how each form actually works. Williams begins Patterns of Poetry with an introduction entitled "Form and the Age," in which he traces the history of form in the arts and the ways in which any form relates to the political, social, and religious temper of the period in which it becomes dominant. He then prefaces the main text with useful notes on rhyme, prosodic symbols, the major feet, metrics, and nonce forms. Also included in the book are a glossary; a bibliography; a listing of additional poems in the various patterns (poems not included in the text but of great use to teachers); an essay on the line as the prosodic unit; and an index.


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Miller Williams' Patterns of Poetry is an encyclopedia of the forms used by poets throughout the history of English, from blank verse to hymnal measure, from englyn penfyr to the double dactyl, from the clerihew to the sonnet. Each form is introduced with a brief discussion of its origin, which is followed by a graphic presentation of its scansion, metrics, and rhyme schem Miller Williams' Patterns of Poetry is an encyclopedia of the forms used by poets throughout the history of English, from blank verse to hymnal measure, from englyn penfyr to the double dactyl, from the clerihew to the sonnet. Each form is introduced with a brief discussion of its origin, which is followed by a graphic presentation of its scansion, metrics, and rhyme scheme. Sample poems show how each form actually works. Williams begins Patterns of Poetry with an introduction entitled "Form and the Age," in which he traces the history of form in the arts and the ways in which any form relates to the political, social, and religious temper of the period in which it becomes dominant. He then prefaces the main text with useful notes on rhyme, prosodic symbols, the major feet, metrics, and nonce forms. Also included in the book are a glossary; a bibliography; a listing of additional poems in the various patterns (poems not included in the text but of great use to teachers); an essay on the line as the prosodic unit; and an index.

30 review for Patterns of Poetry: An Encyclopedia of Forms

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kimber

    Really a must have for poets! Added bonus: the author himself is a fine poet!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Richard Subber

    This is a trove of detail about poetic forms--hint: there are a whole lot more than iambic pentameter. Williams gives details and prodigious examples of dozens of forms of poetry, including forms whose names I can't even pronounce, such as "Englyn Penfyr" and "Awdyl Gywydd." Hint: don't look for them in your local library too much. This is a reference book for poets who are interested in the technics and the pyrotechnics of their craft. Williams adds a rather breezy history of Western literature a This is a trove of detail about poetic forms--hint: there are a whole lot more than iambic pentameter. Williams gives details and prodigious examples of dozens of forms of poetry, including forms whose names I can't even pronounce, such as "Englyn Penfyr" and "Awdyl Gywydd." Hint: don't look for them in your local library too much. This is a reference book for poets who are interested in the technics and the pyrotechnics of their craft. Williams adds a rather breezy history of Western literature and poetry. Read more of my reviews and poetry here: http://richardsubber.com/

  3. 4 out of 5

    John Chadwick

    If your goal is to read poetry (including Miller's) organized by forms, or if your goal is to try to write your own, is there a better resource than the man from Hoxie, [Lawrence County] Arkansas? "In 1962, with writer Flannery O’Connor’s help, he got a job in Louisiana State University’s English Department. Four years later, he joined the faculty of Loyola University in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he founded and edited The New Orleans Review. In 1970, he returned to UA as a member of the Engli If your goal is to read poetry (including Miller's) organized by forms, or if your goal is to try to write your own, is there a better resource than the man from Hoxie, [Lawrence County] Arkansas? "In 1962, with writer Flannery O’Connor’s help, he got a job in Louisiana State University’s English Department. Four years later, he joined the faculty of Loyola University in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he founded and edited The New Orleans Review. In 1970, he returned to UA as a member of the English Department and the graduate program in creative writing." Source: http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net...

  4. 5 out of 5

    Laura Lawless

    I refer back to this book at least once a week, whether I'm reading poetry or writing poetry. A very good and comprehensive book of forms. There may be better books on forms out there, but I haven't found them, yet. A must-have reference. Highly recommended.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Rebekah

    This is one of the best sources of different forms of poetry and how to write them that I've ever found.

  6. 4 out of 5

    David

    Would be difficult to undertake any exercise in formal poetry without this handy and nearly comprehensive gem of a book.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra Mergen

    Useful. Well-written. I borrowed this first from the library then enjoyed it so much I purchased it. It's a keeper.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Stacy Kidd

  9. 5 out of 5

    Sandy

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Dublin

  11. 4 out of 5

    Chris

  12. 5 out of 5

    Mike Duron

  13. 4 out of 5

    Preston

  14. 4 out of 5

    Tommy

  15. 4 out of 5

    Katie

  16. 5 out of 5

    Annie Mcwilliams

  17. 4 out of 5

    Gray

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jessamyn

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mam Thailand

  20. 4 out of 5

    Adrian Mcbride

  21. 5 out of 5

    Mat Wenzel

  22. 4 out of 5

    Cindy Cunningham

  23. 5 out of 5

    John

  24. 4 out of 5

    Karyn Williams

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kate

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kathleen

  27. 5 out of 5

    Burt Myers

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kristina

  29. 4 out of 5

    David Anthony Sam

  30. 4 out of 5

    Max Christian Hansen

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