Consider the following text.

If I could have just one more chance

For us to sing, for us to dance

I'd like to make you feel the same

Instead of thinking it's a game

This text cannot be prose as it is not relying on page margins, sentences or standard grammar. It is from a poem, and below are the clues that will help you recognise the genre of poetry:

  • like a fictional story, it will be about characters, places and events but with a greater focus on emotions, feelings or beliefs
  • imagery created using colourfully descriptive and figurative (or metaphorical) language is used a great deal
  • the meanings can be uncertain or ambiguous with some words working by creating connotations (layers of meaning) all compressed into relatively few words
  • its form and structure contrasts with prose because it uses more obvious sound and visual patterns (such as stanzas, alliteration, rhyme and rhythm)