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Pantoum

Type:  

Structure, Repetitive Requirement

 
Description: 

Written in four-line stanzas; and the second and fourth line of each stanza become the first and third of the succeeding stanza. In the last stanza, the second and fourth lines are the third and first of the first stanza; so that the opening and closing lines of the pantoum are identical. Each line is a repeton.

One expert insists that it should be both rhymed abab bcbc ... zaza and that the lines be isosyllabic. This was more true of the Pantoum in French. English is a little more loosey-goosey as was the Malay version. The same expert says that there is a variation where the poem is ended with lines 1 and 3 used as repetons in reverse order as a couplet.

 
Origin: 

Malayan

 
Schematic: 
The structure for a four verse pantoum would be:
ABCD BEDF EGFH GCHA

If one were to rhyme it, the rhyme scheme would then be:
1, 2, 1, 2; 2, 3, 2, 3; 3, 4, 3, 4; . . . n, 1, n, 1."

Another interesting rhyme scheme is:
aabb aabb aabb ... abba.
 
Rhythm/Stanza Length: 

4

 
Examples: 

 
See Also:  

Domino Rhyme, Envelope Verse, Quatern

 
Status: 

Incomplete

 

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