Write Away Magazine Dec 2019


The Lyrics Doctor

nres, but even then it’s

f you do want to make

nd avoid sounding

erent styles of

more ways to rhyme?

es, pararhyme,

l sounds to

ses or sentences, and

nance serves as one

onance does not have

depends merely on

ant sounds.

nds produced by

rase. This repetition

such as in pitter,

m used in both poetry

ords chuckle, fickle, and

er due to the

nant sounds

Another example, Macklemore’s Same Love uses many

examples of assonance rhymes and other non-standard

rhymes: lately/daily, anointed/poisoned, important/support

it, etc

Pararhyme is a half-rhyme in which there is vowel variation

within the same consonant pattern.

“Strange Meeting” (1918) is a poem by Wilfred Owen, a

war poet who used pararhyme in his writing. Here is a part

of the poem that shows pararhyme:

Too fast in thought or death to be bestirred.

Then, as I probed them, one sprang up, and stared

With piteous recognition in fixed eyes,

Lifting distressful hands, as if to bless.

And by his smile, I knew that sullen hall,

By his dead smile I knew we stood in Hell.

Alliteration and rhyme

Alliteration refers to words that share the same

initial sound, like Peter Piper, Bugs Bunny, or Mickey


Rhyme refers to words that share the same final sound or

sound sequence, like me and tree or tap and cap, or fun

and sun. Rhyme is actually quite complex and difficult to

explain precisely, so you’ll want to keep it pretty simple, at

least at first. My advice: stick to one-syllable words with a

simple sound structure, at least at first.

Avoid cliches. You want to avoid cliches because these

keep your songs from standing out and don’t show off your

unique talent. If you have someone down on their knees

(especially if they’re begging please), someone is walking

down the street (either it’s a girl or it’s you, either way, it’s

been done), or you just have to ask “why can’t you see”, you

probably need to go back to the drawing board...

Please email any questions for The Lyrics Doctor

directly to me and I will forward to him.


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