An ekphrasis is a type of poem that vividly describes a scene, most commonly depicted in a work of art. The poem is meant to narrate as well as educate about the moral, creative, and artistic elements displayed in the scene.
The ekphrasis style of poetry originated in Ancient Greece, and was used mainly as an exercise to challenge the poet to describe any and all works of art. Ekphrasis poems were used in the Plato era to create a sense of wonder and dramatism in its descriptions.
An ekphrasis poem has no strict form or rules, and it can be as poetic or as prose-like as the author wishes. It can be a long or short description, and it can contain many details. Some famous examples of ekphrasis poems are written in stanzas, while others appear as long paragraphs. These descriptions are often found underneath works of art at a gallery, or in historical textbooks.