Rhyme Schemes In Poetry
While not all poems rhyme, some follow a certain rhyming scheme, adding to the rhythm of the poem. The last word of each line is what we look at when discussing a rhyme scheme.
Rhyming words are words that have the same ending sound (from the last vowel sound through the end of the word). It's important to listen to the sound of the words and not just look at the spelling; there are many words that have a similar spelling but do not have the same sound.
For example, "do" and "go" look like they should rhyme, but they don't. The same goes for "lost" and "post."
It goes the other way as well. There are words that do not look like rhyming words because of different spellings, but they do rhyme. Some examples include:
"blue" and "through"
"true" and "you"
"said" and "red"
Reading aloud a poem helps you hear the rhyming words.
Letters are used to denote the rhyming scheme in a stanza. Each time the rhyme changes, another letter is introduced.
For example, if the following words were the ending of lines in a poem, the rhyming scheme would be ABAB.
"Sat" and "mat" rhyme, so the same letter is used (A). "Cap" and "lap" rhyme, so the same letter is used (B). Since "sat" does not rhyme with "cap," they cannot share the same letter. Each time a new rhyme set is introduced, a new letter must be used.
Take a look at these variations in rhyme scheme. You will also find links to poems from the Family Friend Poems website.
ABAB Rhyme Scheme
In an ABAB format, the rhyming alternates lines. The first and third rhyme with each other, and the second and fourth rhyme.
Examples Of Poems With ABAB Rhyme Scheme
- Healing Love
- The One
- If Only
- Last Chance
- Just One Thing I Should Have Said
- Best Friends
- The Drifter's Melody
- My Sweet Savior
AABB Rhyme Scheme
Many poems that follow the AABB pattern are broken into quatrains, which are four line stanzas, where the first and second lines rhyme and the third and fourth lines rhyme.
Examples Of Poems With AABB Rhyme Scheme
- He'll Never Know
- My Christmas Wish
- Missing You
- Nature's Way
- Every Day My Love For You Grows
- A Poison Tree
- A Friend In Need Is A Friend Indeed
- How Can I Forget?
- Never Stop Being You
- The Importance Of A Sister
- A True Friend
ABCB Rhyme Scheme
In an ABCB format, the second and forth lines of the stanza rhyme. The first and third lines do not rhyme with any others.
Examples Of Poems With ABCB Rhyme Scheme
- Crimson Rose
- The Gift
- Friendship: One of God's Greatest Gifts
- Growing Up With Grandma
- One More Day
- My Melody
- I Wish I Wasn't Alone
- I Tried So Hard
- What I Love About You
- To A Terrific Dad