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Poetry from A to Z

Poet Alison Chisholm guides you through the language of poetry

POETRY PRIMER

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A RONDEL is a thirteen-line French poetry form written in three stanzas, and using two rhyming sounds. Two of its lines are repeated in their entirety as refrains, giving a rhyme pattern of: A B b a a b A B a b b a A. So the opening lines recur at the end of the second quatrain, with the first line repeated at the end of the quintain. There are usually eight or sometimes ten syllables to the line, and iambic metre is a popular choice for the form.

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