This example can be considered a more complex form of acrostic. This classical poetry is titled Behold, O God! written by William Browne published in 1815 in his book "Original Poems By William Browne." The poem has highlighted letters inside its verses such that when they are grouped together, printed as red letters in the manuscript, the letters depict three crosses and the topmost middle cross reads "INRI", in Latin means "Iesus Nazarenus Rex Iudaeorum" translated as "Jesus of Nazareth King of Jews." The crosses contain verses from the New Testament. The left cross contains Luke 23:42 "Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom." The middle cross contains Matthew 27:46 "O God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" The right cross contains Luke 23:39 "If thou art the Christ, save thyself and us." The three quotes represent the three figures crucified on Golgotha, as recorded in the gospels of Matthew and Luke.
BEHOLD, O God! IN RIvers of my tears
I come to thee! bow down thy blessed ears
To hear me, wretch, and let thine eyes (which sleep
Did never close) behold a sinner weep:
Let not, O GOD, MY GOD, my faults through great,
And numberless, betWeen thy mercy's seat
And my poor soul be tHrown! since we are taught,
Thou, LORD, REMEMBER'st thYne, IF THOU [ART] be sought.
I coME not, Lord, witH any oTHEr merit
Than WHat I by my SAviour CHrist inherit:
Be thEN his woundS my balm; his stRIpes my bliss;
My crown his THorns; my deaTh be loST in his.
And thOU, my blesT Redeemer, SAviour, God,
Quit my acCOunts, withHold the VEngeful rod!
O beg for ME! my hOpes on Thee are set;
And ChriST forgiVe, as well as pay tHe debt
The livINg fount, the liFe, the waY, I know,
And but TO thee, O whither Should I go?
All oTHer helps aRe vain: grant thinE to me,
For in thY cross my Saving heaLth must be.
O hearKen then whAt I with Faith implore,
Lest SIN and Death sinK me for evermore.
An acrostic (from French acrostiche < post-classical Latin acrostichis < Hellenistic Greek:....., from ancient Greek: 'highest, topmost' + ......'verse') is a poem or other form of writing in which the first letter, syllable or word of each line, paragraph or other recurring feature in the text spells out a word or a message. As a form of constrained writing, an acrostic can be used as a mnemonic device to aid memory retrieval. A famous acrostic was made in Greek for the acclamation JESUS CHRIST, SON OF GOD, SAVIOUR (Greek: ??s??? ???st??, Te?? ????, S?t??; Iesous CHristos, THeou Yios, Soter — ch and th being each one letter in Greek). The initials spell ICHTHYS (??T?S), Greek for fish.
EXTRACTS FROM WIKIPEDIA
Acrostic poems don't only consist of "hiding" the message in the first and/or last letters of the lines of a poem.
In my poem, New Year's Wishes, I push the envelope...
There are many variations on the acrostic, a form derived from the abecedarian form, some of which have their own names. One could have the key phrase hidden in successive positions down the lines, thereby creating a diagonal. One could use the initial letters of words in successive positions in each line. The possibilities are endless. Punctuation at the end of the line is the prerogative of the poet. Words such as “and” may be employed to indicate a continuation of thought and a natural breathless deliverance of the poem when recited. It is usually un-rhymed and has no meter!