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What are the similarities and differences between poetry and prose?

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beneflo | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted February 27, 2012 at 3:12 AM via web

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What are the similarities and differences between poetry and prose?

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readerofbooks | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted February 27, 2012 at 3:22 AM (Answer #1)

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This is a great question. There are many similarities and differences. Let me make a list for you.

Both prose and poetry are literature that seek to express a point. They both can be artistic and require skill and lots of practice. So, from the point of view of creativity, artistry, and other literary points of view, there is much in common. So, we can say that there is very fine line between poetry and prose.  What separates poetry from prose generally speaking are the followings:

First, poetry is governed by meter. For example, if you read the works of Homer it is written in the dactylic hexameter. Virgil also uses this in his Aeneid, and Lucretius in his, De Rerum Natura. There are many meters and some of them even sound like prose, which makes this very confusing, such as the works of Plautus, the Roman poet.

Second, poetry also tends to follow certain patterns, whether they be couplets, rhymes or other artistic conventions. Prose does not follow patters or better yet does not have to do so.


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