Form in poetry is the physical or written structure of a poem. See Types of Poetic Forms. It is the style or manner in which a poem is written. When a form is used, the poem adheres to a strict and organized way of being constructed. It can refer to the details of the poem, its shape, the characteristics of the text of the poem, its concept, stanza pattern, meter, and syllable count, etc.
Form is often one of the most important parts of writing poetry. For many people, form in poetry is everything. People do still care about the actual subject matter, but poetry is more about the language and structure than the theme in many cases. Most poets are more or less interested in playing around with the sound of words and the way that different words sound in proportion to one another, and poetic form can be a useful way to explore all of that. Pairing words based on their similar sounds, their contrasting sounds, and their complementary sounds can be part of the job of the poet.
For some types of poems, even a lack of form or apparent form can be an example of form in poetry. A lot of modernist poets are specifically interested in poetic form in this manner. Many of their verses are not written with attention to rhyme, rhythm, or anything involving detailed poetic structure. Their poetry is much more similar to prose in that manner. However, they are still exploring a lot of basic emotions in that regard, and that can make a huge difference for the people who are trying to find a way to communicate what they feel without having to put form before theme.
[n] the spatial arrangement of something as distinct from its substance; "geometry is the mathematical science of shape"
[n] a mold for setting concrete; "they built elaborate forms for pouring the foundation"
[n] a life-size dummy used to display clothes
[n] the visual appearance of something or someone; "the delicate cast of his features"
[n] a particular mode in which something is manifested; "his resentment took the form of extreme hostility"
[n] any spatial attributes (especially as defined by outline); "he could barely make out their shapes through the smoke"
[n] an ability to perform well; "he was at the top of his form"; "the team was off form last night"
[n] alternative names for the body of a human being; "Leonardo studied the human body"; "he has a strong physique"; "the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak"
[n] a category of things distinguished by some common characteristic or quality; "sculpture is a form of art"; "what kinds of desserts are there?"
[n] a perceptual structure; "the composition presents problems for students of musical form"; "a visual pattern must include not only objects but the spaces between them"
[n] the phonological or orthographic sound or appearance of a word; "the inflected forms of a word can be represented by a stem and a list of inflections to be attached"
[n] a printed document with spaces in which to write; "he filled out his tax form"
[n] an arrangement of the elements in a composition or discourse; "the essay was in the form of a dialogue"; "he first sketches the plot in outline form"
[n] (biology) a group of organisms within a species that differ in trivial ways from similar groups; "a new strain of microorganisms"
[n] a body of students who are taught together; "early morning classes are always sleepy"
[n] (physical chemistry) a distinct state of matter in a system; matter that is identical in chemical composition and physical state and separated from other material by the phase boundary; "the reaction occurs in the liquid phase of the system"
[v] give a shape or or form to; "shape the dough"
[v] make something, usually for a specific function; "She molded the riceballs carefully"; "Form cylinders from the dough"; "shape a figure"; "Work the metal into a sword"
[v] give shape to; "form the clay into a head"
[v] establish or impress firmly in the mind; "We imprint our ideas onto our children"
[v] create, as of a social group or a company, for example
[v] to compose or represent:"This wall forms the background of the stage setting"; "The branches made a roof"; "This makes a fine introduction"
[v] develop into a distinctive entity; "our plans began to take shape"