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Examples of Internal Rhyme

Rhymes add a musical component to poems and make them easier to remember. They can also enhance the meaning.

Internal Rhymes: Types

Poetry can have end rhymes or internal rhymes.
There are three types of internal rhymes:

  • Two or more rhyming words occur within the same line
  • Two or more rhyming words will appear in the middle of two separate lines or sometimes in more
  • A word at the end of a line rhymes with one or more in the middle of the following line

Here are a few examples of these three types of internal rhymes:

Rhyme in the Same Line

  • I went to town to buy a gown. / I took the car and it wasn’t far.
  • Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary – Edgar Allen Poe (The Raven).
  • I had a cat who wore a hat. / He looked cool but felt the fool.
  • I lost my dog in the midst of fog. / He found his way home, he doesn’t like to roam.

Rhyme in Separate Lines

  • I see a red boat that has a red flag. / Just like my red coat and my little red pail.
  • I wore a shiny new bow upon my head. / I began to grow and it fit me no more.
  • I’d like to jump into the ocean. / But don’t dump me in instead.

Word at the End and Word in the Middle

  • The snowflakes are dancing, floating, and falling. / The church bells are calling, but I will not go.
  • The sky was a clear, rich shiny blue. / I knew it was true but I stayed inside.
  • It is fallible men who make the law. / This may be a flaw, but there’s no other way.

Examples from Literature

Edgar Allan Poe was a master at using literary devices to add to depth, tone, and emotion to his poems. He also chose to use all types of internal rhyme and even mixed them together at times. This just added to the effect of his poems, making them even better.
In the following excerpt, he even extended the rhyming words to one additional line. Notice the words napping, rapping, and tapping that are spread out over three lines of the poem, “The Raven.”

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,

Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,

While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,

As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door. “

‘Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door;

Only this, and nothing more.”

In this one excerpt, you can see internal rhyme:

  • Within one line with “napping” and “tapping”
  • Internal rhyme between two lines with “napping” and “rapping”
  • Internal rhyme between the last word of one line and a word in the middle of the following line with “tapping” and “rapping”

As if that weren’t enough, Poe decided to put one more rhyming word in the third line, for just a little extra emphasis.


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