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Monotetra: Poetic Forms

Learn how to write the monotetra, a poetic form developed by Michael Walker that is comprised of quatrains with a refrain, including guidelines for the form and an example poem.

The monotetra is a poetic form developed by Michael Walker. Here are the basic rules:

  • Comprised of quatrains (four-line stanzas) in tetrameter (four metrical feet) for a total of 8 syllables per line
  • Each quatrain consists of mono-rhymed lines (so each line in the first stanza has the same type of rhyme, as does each line in the second stanza, etc.)
  • The final line of each stanza repeats the same four syllables
  • This poem can be as short as one quatrain and as long as a poet wishes

Personally, I like the rhyme scheme and the repetitive final line of each stanza. I also appreciate the flexibility of this form in terms of how long or short the poem can be.

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The Complete Guide of Poetic Forms

Play with poetic forms!

Poetic forms are fun poetic games, and this digital guide collects more than 100 poetic forms, including more established poetic forms (like sestinas and sonnets) and newer invented forms (like golden shovels and fibs).

Click to continue.

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Here's my attempt at a monotetra:

"The view from up here"

We found a rock on the hilltop
that we used as reason to stop
and talk about our school's sock hop--
where music pops, where music pops.

She told me I should learn to dance,
but I was concerned with romance
and wanted to make an advance--
she said, "No chance;" she said, "No chance."

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