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Traditionally poetic form requires poets to write to strict guidelines. Take the Villanelle for instance, one of the poetry's more challenging forms:Villanelle: A Villanelle is 19 lines long, and consists of 5 tercets (or 3 line stanzas) and a concluding quatrain (4 line stanzas). The first and third lines of the poem rhyme and are repeated throughout, alternating as the last line of each stanza and, finally, are used as the last two lines of the poem. In addition, the second line of every stanza must also rhyme. Got it?
It's the poet's job to take this incredibly strict and complicated form and use it to create something beautiful, seemingly effortless. The most famous example of a Villanelle is probably the funeral favourite, Dylan Thomas' Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night.
The copywriter is required to do a similar thing when writing meta descriptions, adhering to Google guidelines which enforce character limits of 156-158 characters, whilst at the same time squeezing in relevant keywords and making the whole thing read like a real sentence, rather than spammy and keyword-stuffed. In short, making it look effortless.
Similarly, optimised website content requires relevant keywords to be inserted into the text in their complete form (for instance, SEO Manchester) to achieve the best results. This can often mean using punctuation imaginatively to separate the first half of the keyword from the second half, for example:
"If you are in need of SEO, Manchester is the ideal place to start your search."
"Online in Manchester: SEO, Blogging and Social Media"
This is a technique often used in Villanelles to breathe new life into consistently repeated phrases.
So What Can We Learn from Poetic Form?
Poetic form can teach us new ways to get keywords into optimised content, by demonstrating interesting ways to punctuate sentences, retaining or altering the original meaning.
Writing to strict poetic guidelines also helps copywriters practice the art of writing taut, self-contained, grammatically correct and well-optimised meta descriptions.
If you're interested in finding out more about poetry and poetic form, the following websites are great: