by Lucy Ochoa-Petit ǀ @lucy_luisana
“I would define, in brief, poetry of words as the rhythmical creation of beauty.”
Edgar Allan Poe.
Why does poetry sound so beautiful? Sometimes, it even sounds seductive. Why are some poems so appealing to our ears? You might say it’s the creative use of language that makes poetry lovely, and you’d be right—but there’s more to it. It’s the sound the words and their syllables make that creates an attractive musical rhythm.
Alliteration is a key literary device we can use to make our poems sound sexy, helping us seduce and captivate our readers.
Alliteration is complex. It’s the wild child of literary devices, causing a lot of debate around its proper use, so for the sake of simplicity, alliteration is when the initial sounds of words repeat in a phrase. The words can be right next to each other or separated by other words, and alliteration usually uses consonant sounds. Here are a couple of examples:
“S”: sound: Summer’s sunny rays sizzled on my skin.
“B” sound: You bounce me like a brittle ball and break me into a billion pieces.
Remember, alliteration is all about those initial consonant sounds so it doesn’t matter if the words don’t start with the same letter as long as the sound is the same. Here’s another example:
“C / K” sound: Carly King can’t cook calamari in the kitchen.
You can also get creative and play around with the sounds of consonant clusters like “sp”, “tr”, “cl”, for instance:
“Sp” consonant cluster: There was a special spark between their spirits.
Alliteration will give your poetry a charming twist by adding a seductive musical rhythm.
It’ll also give your poems structure, making them flow beautifully, especially when recited out loud.
So next time the poetry gods call, pick up your pen and paper and add a little alliteration to your poem.
Lucy Ochoa-Petit ǀ @lucy_luisana
Lucy is a curious creative who loves all things poetry. Her writing reflects her experiences and the world around her. She is passionate about helping others discover their love of poetry and poetic voice through writing technique.