Skip to content

Joseph Coelho speaks about Grammar and Poetry

I’m often asked by teachers about tackling grammar in poetry, it’s difficult to answer because there are no hard and fast rules – it depends on the poem and the style you want to adopt, so one poem may follow all of the rules of grammar as used when writing prose, another may not.

For instance, many poems start each new line with a capital. That said in the classroom it can be helpful for young poets to write out a poem initially as prose, without line breaks and using the grammar they would normally use, then write the poem out fresh, adding line breaks to separate out ideas and images, breaking the poem up into the images and messages the young poet wishes to convey.