Villanelles started in Italy as song lyrics to a traditional folk dance. The poetic form still keeps to the tradition of every now and then repeating a certain line like a refrain. Many poets prefer to use this form of poetry for more brooding images or memories that come back to haunt you, but you can choose what subject matter you want. A villanelle is five groups of three lines, and then concludes with four lines, making 19 lines in all not including the line breaks in between stanza groups.
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FFP Poetry Forums. By Yetunde Ogunfidodo more by Yetunde Ogunfidodo. Check out our page on Stanzas and poetic sentence structure. In the example below, a high light means that the entire phrase is going to be repeated refrain. An underline means that just the sound at the end is going to be repeated rhyme. A1 "My will is as strong as yours, and my kingdom as great". B is as far as Sarah got.
The first and third lines are repeated alternately at the end of each Tercet. They also form the final two lines. The form is best illustrated with an example. The term villanelle was not always applied to a strict poetic form.
Last Updated: January 25, References. This article was co-authored by Megan Morgan, PhD. There are 19 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed , times.