Apologies if this isn't the right place for this, but I couldn't see a general area for writing other than here. I've been wanting to dip into poetry as opposed to prose, so I spent the last few hours learning about metre, rhyme scheme, etc. I wrote something in iambic pentameter as an exercise, but I have a fundamental question regarding form and structure. How and when do you vary the metre/feet? I'm not sure if it's correct to say, for example, "This poem is written in x". The poem I wrote was in iambic pentameter (I suppose you could say), having 5 units of iambs and 10 syllables. However, when can you vary this and when do you know how make such variations? For example, instead of ------------------------------- (iamb/iamb/iamb/iamb/iamb) ------------------------------- (iamb/iamb/iamb/iamb/iamb) Repeat for a few lines exactly the same, etc, etc. When would you change this? Could you, in one line, just write all anapests or just one word as an anapest when all the rest are iambs? What would that be called? The reason I ask is, if an English sonnet is mostly written in iambic pentameter, if you vary it, would it be a sonnet or does every line have to include five iambs for it to be a sonnet? Another way to put it is, if I wanted to just start writing a poem, how would I know to make such changes? These questions are clearly fundamental, but for some reason I can't figure it out. Edit: I've actually not really come across any poems which greatly differ in meter in lines or at all. Ozymandias, my favourite, is all in Iambic, isn't it? This poem seems to be very varied, however. It has 10 syllables each line, but maybe some words are not iambs? Can someone break this down for me? Wood strips, cross-purposed into lattice, made this nursery of interstices—a place that softened, then admitted, sun with shade, baffled the wind and rain, broke open space. by Frank Osen Apologies, I'm very new to this.