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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > March 2016 > Poetry from A to Z

Poetry from A to Z

Poet Alison Chisholm guides you through the language of poetry

GEORGICS are poems about the countryside and particularly about farming. They are often didactic, giving instructions on farming practices. Virgil’s second major poem is a four-volume work on the subject.

A GHAZAL is an Arabic form, a lyrical poem of at least five (and up to about fifteen) couplets. It’s a praise poem, often a love poem, or one dealing with love and loss. Traditionally the first two lines form a rhyming couplet, and the final word of the second line is a refrain repeated throughout the poem. The same metre is used in every line. The couplets can stand alone, and do not use enjambments between them. The last stanza, the signature couplet, may include the poet’s name. Formerly untitled, modern ghazals usually have a title.

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