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Poetry Guide: Verse

Most verse writing uses meter as its primary organizational mode, as opposed to prose, which uses grammatical and discoursal units like sentences and paragraphs. Verse may also use rhyme and other technical devices that are often associated with poetry.

Not all verse is poetry. Generally speaking, what separates the two is that in poetry language achieves the highest possible level of condensation.

In popular music a verse roughly corresponds with a poetic stanza. It is often sharply contrasted with the chorus or refrain melodically, rhythmically, and harmonically, and assumes a higher level of dynamics and activity, often with added instrumentation. See: strophic form, verse-chorus form and Thirty-two-bar form.

Holy books such as the Bible or Qur'an are divided into small verses.

See also