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Free Verse Definition

A term describing various styles of poetry that are not written using strict meter or rhyme, but that still are recognizable as 'poetry' by virtue of complex patterns of one sort or another that readers can perceive to be part of a coherent whole.

A free verse is a type of poem that does not follow a specific meter or a specific rhyme scheme. There is no fixed form. A free verse poem does not have a specific rhyme pattern that it needs to follow and there are no set rules to writing a poem in free verse. The poem has natural pauses based on phrases. A person will pause in this poem like they would if they are speaking to another. This type of poem is also known as a vers libre. Those are the French words for free verse. There is no set length requirement to a free verse poem either. Free verse is used mostly in contemporary poetry. Free verse allows a person to express themselves through the words they are writing and not through specific meters. This will allow a person the freedom they need to chose which words to use and will focus on expressi their thoughts to the audience. 

Free Verse Poem Example

by Carl Sandburg

THE FOG comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.

Other Free Verse Definition

[n] unrhymed verse without a consistent metrical pattern

More below...


vers libre

See Also...

poem, verse form

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