The Magical World of Poetic Forms as Created by the Students of AQB

Ever wonder who invented the sonnet? Well, according to the world’s collective brain (ie. Wikipedia), “The 13th-century poet and notary Giacomo da Lentini is credited with the sonnet’s invention for expressing courtly love.” How’d he do it? By coming up with a snazzy little poetic form that rocks (literally–it’s all in the five iambs!) and then getting the likes of Billy Shakespeare and even Walt William to write in it.

In short, every great received form has an origin story, i.e. someone had to write the first villanelle so that we can write them today. And each time a poet invents a new form, it’s called a NONCE FORM–if other poets pick it up and carry it forward, eventually it becomes a RECEIVED FORM. On this website, you’ll discover the NONCE FORMS created by the students of AQB here at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A lot of love went into crafting these, and we hope you take them out for a test drive and run with each and every one of them, though do be sure to give the poet credit when you do. So. Have fun, stick to the rules (or innovate!), and remember, life’s more interesting when you’re an original!