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Light poetry

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Light poetry

Light poetry, or light verse, is poetry that attempts to be humorous. Poems considered "light" are usually brief, and can be on a frivolous or serious subject, and often feature word play, including puns, adventurous rhyme and heavy alliteration. Typically, light verse in English is formal verse, although a few free verse poets, such as Billy Collins, have excelled at light verse outside the formal verse tradition.

While light poetry is sometimes condemned as doggerel, or thought of as poetry composed casually, humor often makes a serious point in a subtle or subversive way. Many of the most renowned "serious" poets, such as Horace, Swift, Pope and Auden, have also excelled at light verse.

Notable poets

English

German

See also

Publications

The following periodicals regularly publish light verse:

  • Able Muse
  • Light (formerly Light Quarterly), a journal of light verse
  • The Spectator runs regular light verse competitions
  • The Washington Post runs regular light verse competitions as part of its Style Invitational
  • Asinine Poetry, a quarterly online journal of humorous poetry
  • Lighten Up, an online journal of light verse
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