How to Write a Cinquain Poem

Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.
-Robert Frost

This is a a fairly easy poem to write. It has a very rigid structure, but it can be written about just about anything.

So, a cinquain poem has five lines. These lines do not rhyme. However, these lines each have to have a certain amount of syllables in each line.

In the first line there are two syllables. Then in the second four syllables. The third six syllables. And then in the fourth eight syllables. The last line has two syllables.

That means that the poem’s form looks like this:

Line 1: two syllables
Line 2: four syllables
Line 3: six syllables
Line 4: eight syllables
Line 5: two syllables

This means that the poem ends up looking rather like a diamond.

When you are writing a cinquain poem the first thing to do (besides knowing what it is) is to brainstorm what you want the poem to be about. Your poem can be about anything from aliens to tea, and everything in between that and anything that is not included in what has already been said. Often people use their idea for their first line, so it can be helpful if your idea word has two syllables, but that is not necessary.

For my poem I am going to use the word ‘water.’ Since water has two syllables I will be able to use that for my first line in my poem.

Now that I have decided what I am going to write about, I am going to brainstorm ideas of words and phrases that describe water.

Here is what I have got: silk, dangerous, mysterious, glass like, veil between worlds, life giving, and light. Now obviously this is going to need a little bit of work still, but having these ideas do help.

So now I just make these work into the structure that the cinquain needs to be in.

Here is my poem:


Veil between worlds
Glass and light darkness
Danger lurks in all the corners
Life gives

So that is all there is to it! I hope that you have enjoyed learning about the cinquain poem, and that you will try writing one. They are a lot of fun to play around with.


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