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How to Write a Rhyming Couplet

A Guide for the Budding Poets on How to Write a Rhyming Couplet

Writing a rhyming couplet can be fun, and at the same time, a good learning experience for all the budding poets. Read on...
Aastha Dogra
Last Updated: Mar 9, 2018
In a layman's language, a rhyming couplet can be defined as a set of lines whose end words rhyme. Rhyming couplets have been used beautifully in literature by poets, for centuries together, as they make the words and the lines sound lyrical. Let us have a look at examples of some amazing rhyming couplets, written by famous poets in the past.
Rhyming Couplets Examples
"True wit is nature to advantage _dressed_ What oft was thought, but ne'er so well expressed."
- Alexander Pope
True wit is nature to advantage distressed,
What oft was thought, but ne'er so well expressed.
- Eve King
O could I flow like thee, and make thy stream
My great example, as it is my theme!
Though deep, yet clear, though gentle, yet not dull,
Strong without rage, without o'erflowing full.
- Cooper's Hill
Such is my love, to thee I so belong,
That for thy right myself will bear all wrong.
- Shakespeare (End of Sonnet LXXXVIII)
So precious are true friends who lend their ears
and give their time to wipe away sad tears.
- Joy Saunders
Nodding perfume. In my garden birds sing,
Roses bloom, and I am remembering.
- Josie Falla
But if thou live, remember'd not to be,
Die single and thine image dies with thee.
- Shakespeare (Sonnet III)
How to Write Rhyming Couplets
Tip # 1
Rhyming couplets are the easiest to write, provided you are careful while choosing a subject. To make your couplet sound gripping, a good idea is to choose a topic which many people find interesting. At the same time, the topic chosen should be such that people do not actually think about or ponder over much! This way, you can be assured that they would be interested in reading what you have come up with!
Tip # 2
Since you have just a couple of lines to express your whole idea, do not choose a subject which is very vast. For instance, if you choose life, you might not be able to express it in two lines. However, if you choose something like beauty of a flower, you can bring out the idea quite well in just two lines!
Tip # 3
When writing rhyming couplets, the commonest mistake budding poets make is to use very regular and obvious rhyming words, such as June with moon, or worse, cat with mat. Anyone can use such words, even a ten year old! So, strictly avoid these, and instead, use some unique, unusual rhyming words, which lend weightage to what you have written, and make the couplet sound intelligent!
Tip # 4
To make your rhyming couplets sound more lyrical and well-coordinated, keep the syllable count same in the first and the second line! First of all, write both the lines, which bring forth the idea that you want to express. Thereafter, try and adjust the syllable count. If you are able to pull this off, it will make a world of difference to your rhyming couplet.
Tip # 5
You will be surprised to know that you can form a full-fledged poem by combining your couplets! So, write around six couplets on the same subject, and then combine them together to form a twelve-line poem! You may go through how to write a rhyming poem, to get a better idea. Secondly, since you are writing a couplet, why not try writing a sonnet too? All you have to do for this is to write four lines instead of two, and make the alternate lines rhyme to one another, i.e. the rhyming scheme should be A.B.A.B.
Here's hoping that these tips help you get started on the journey to write your own rhyming couplets. One last advice on the same before I sign off - do not ever make your rhyming scheme sound predictable, as it will lend an artificiality to your couplet. Remember, being unusual, being different and unique, is the key to writing beautiful poetry!
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