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Forms of Poetry - E | Types of Poems - E

Forms of Poetry - e. This is a comprehensive resource of poetic forms beginning with the letter e. We include examples of different Types of Poems.

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Ekphrasis (Ecphrasis)


Ekphrasis, alternately spelled ecphrasis, is a term used to denote poetry or poetic writing concerning itself with the visual arts, artistic objects, and/or highly visual scenes. This style of writing is characteristic in such works as Keats' "Ode on a Grecian Urn," Byron's Childe Harold's Pilgrimage, and Shelley's "On the Medusa of Leonardo da Vinci in the Florentine Gallery."


John Keats -- "Ode on a Grecian Urn"

Thou still unravish'd bride of quietness,

Thou foster-child of silence and slow time,

Sylvan historian, who canst thus express

A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme:

What leaf-fring'd legend haunts about thy shape

Of deities or mortals, or of both,

In Tempe or the dales of Arcady?

What men or gods are these? What maidens loth?

What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape?

What pipes and timbrels? What wild ecstasy?

Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard

Are sweeter; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on;

Not to the sensual ear, but more endear'd,

Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone:

Fair youth, beneath the trees, thou canst not leave

Thy song, nor ever can those trees be bare;

Bold lover, never, never canst thou kiss,

Though winning near the goal -- yet, do not grieve;

She cannot fade, though thou hast not thy bliss,

For ever wilt thou love, and she be fair!

Ah, happy, happy boughs! that cannot shed

Your leaves, nor ever bid the spring adieu;

And, happy melodist, unwearied,

For ever piping songs for ever new;

More happy love! more happy, happy love!

For ever piping songs for ever warm and still to be enjoy'd,

For ever panting, and for ever young;

All breathing human passion far above,

That leaves a heart high-sorrowful and cloy'd,

A burning forehead, and a parching tongue.

Who are these coming to the sacrifice?

To what green altar, O mysterious priest,

Lead'st thou that heifer lowing at the skies,

And all her silken flanks with garlands drest?

What little town by river or sea shore,

Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel,

Is emptied of this folk, this pious morn?

And, little town, thy streets for evermore

Will silent be; and not a soul to tell

Why thou art desolate, can e'er return.

O Attic shape! Fair attitude! with brede

Of marble men and maidens overwrought,

With forest branches and the trodden weed;

Thou, silent form, dost tease us out of thought

As doth eternity: Cold Pastoral!

When old age shall this generation waste,

Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe

Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say'st,

"Beauty is truth, truth beauty, -- and that is all

Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.



A poem of mourning, or, a sad and thoughtful poem about the death of an individual.


Elegy by Ambrose Bierce

The cur foretells the knell of parting day;
The loafing herd winds slowly o'er the lea;
The wise man homewards plods; I only stay
To fiddle-faddle in a minor key.

Enclosed Rhyme


The rhyme scheme "abba" (that is, where the first and fourth lines, and the second and third lines rhyme).


How soon hath Time, the subtle thief of youth,
Stolen on his wing my three and twentieth year!
My hasting days fly on with full career,
But my late spring no bud or blossom shew'th.

(From John Milton's "On His Being Arrived to the Age of Twenty-Three")



Englyn (plural englynion) is a traditional Welsh and Cornish short poem form. It uses quantitative metres, involving the counting of syllables, and rigid patterns of rhyme and half rhyme. Each line contains a repeating pattern of consonants and accent known as cynghanedd. There are eight types of englynion.


Here is an English language englyn by novelist Robertson Davies.

The Old Journalist

He types his laboured column--weary drudge!
Senile, fudge and solemn;
Spare, editor, to condemn
These dry leaves of his autumn.



An extensive, serious poem that tells the story about a heroic figure. A broadly defined genre of poetry, and one of the major forms of narrative literature. It retells in a continuous narrative the life and works of a heroic or mythological person or group of persons.


  • The Iliad, ascribed to Homer (Greek mythology)
  • The Odyssey, ascribed to Homer (Greek mythology)

  • Epigram


    A very short, ironic and witty poem usually written as a brief couplet or quatrain. The term is derived from the Greek epigramma meaning inscription.


    Here lies my wife: here let her lie!
    Now she's at rest — and so am I.
    — John Dryden

    I am His Highness' dog at Kew;
    Pray tell me, sir, whose dog are you?
    — Alexander Pope

    Little strokes
    Fell great oaks.
    — Benjamin Franklin



    A commemorative inscription on a tomb or mortuary monument written to praise the deceased.


    Walter de la Mare

    Here lies a most beautiful lady,
    Light of step and heart was she:
    I think she was the most beautiful lady
    That ever was in the West Country.
    But beauty vanishes; beauty passes;
    However rare, rare it be;
    And when I crumble who shall remember
    This lady of the West Country?



    A poem written in honor of the bride and groom.


    by Matthew Rohrer

    In the middle garden is the secret wedding,
    that hides always under the other one
    and under the shiny things of the other one. Under a tree
    one hand reaches through the grainy dusk toward another.
    Two right hands. The ring is a weed that will surely die.

    There is no one else for miles,
    and even those people far away are deaf and blind.
    There is no one to bless this.
    There are the dark trees, and just beyond the trees.

    Copyright © 2001 by Matthew Rohrer.



    The “Epulaeryu” poem is about delicious food. It consists of seven lines with thirty-three (33) syllables. The first line has seven syllables, the second line five, the third line seven, the fourth line five, the fifth line five, the sixth line three, and the seventh line has only one syllable which ends with an exclamation mark. Each line has one thought relating to the main course. Therefore, this new poetic form, the Epulaeryu, which has corresponding lines built around the main course, and ending with an exclamation point, concludes with the ending line expressing the writer’s excitement and feelings about the poem.


    Eggs Rolls (Epulaeryu)
    Egg rolls wrapped with soft thin dough
    Chopped spiced shrimp cooked slow
    Sliced carrots and cabbage mixed
    Ginger sauce affixed
    Veggies and less meat
    My Chinese—

    © Joseph, 6/1/07
    © All Rights Reserved
    Halloween Candy (Epulaeryu)
    Halloween candy so nice
    Like sugary spice
    Crispy, creamy, chocolate
    With tasty raisins
    Trick or treat goblins
    My tooth is

    © Joseph, 10/10/2007
    © All Rights Reserved


    Easter Hunt (Epulaeryu)
    The egg pots are bubbling
    Stove’s fire is bright
    This will be a great delight
    Kids will like the treat
    Multicolored feast
    Easter eggs
    © Joseph Spence 2/9/06
    © All Rights Reserved



    A brief narrative poem with a romantic or mythological theme.





    Created about twenty years ago by an Arkansas poet named Etheree Taylor Armstrong, this titled form, the Etheree, consists of ten lines of unmetered and unrhymed verse, the first line having one syllable, each succeeding line adding a syllable, with the total syllable count being fifty-five.



    My friend,
    You give me
    Many lessons
    Built on many truths.
    You shout with sharpened tongue ~
    I must listen to your words.
    Bedfellows screaming in the night,
    But eternal hope will spring with dawn
    To lift us from this tomb of woe, once more.