Nine-line poetry – The Magic 9!

by | Mar 26, 2021

When I first came across a poetry form called The Magic Nine, I was immediately intrigued.

The magic nine poetry - Storymakers

Though I love having a go at writing poetry and simply going with the flow, I also like a challenge. This one appealed because it is a structured form that follows the rhyming pattern: ABACADABA.

What particularly stood out for me was how this form of poetry was thought to have come about. It’s said that someone was trying to spell that all-important magic word, ‘abracadabra’ and got it wrong. You see, omission of the ‘r’s gives you a nine-line poem structure. Hence, the magic nine!

I did this with my older Young Writers recently and they struggled with it. Sometimes, they prefer to have free rein when it comes to writing poetry. Here are a couple of examples though.

Being able to freely speak, A
Is a basic human right. B
But day by day and week by week, A
I see the damage it causes, C
And that makes the world feel really bleak. A
The toxicity of social media, D
The nastiness of the weak; A
Using their words to start a fight. B
You don’t think like them, therefore you are a freak. A

You can see that lines 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9 rhyme with each other. Lines 2 and 8 rhyme and then you have two independent lines, 4 and 6. This is why it’s quite difficult because line A is used so many times, so it means choosing your rhyming words carefully.

Here is another example:

The soldiers stood proud and long, A
As the waves lapped up against the sand, B
The cry of the larks and the hummingbirds’ song, A
And the moonlight beaches and purple moors, C
When the whisper of the wind is never wrong, A
Yet the world continues as it always does, D
With the rain beating down and the trees standing strong, A
Where the mountains and cliffs proudly stand B
And in that prolonging adventure we go headstrong. A

Magic isn’t it?!

I hope you enjoy having a go at this one.



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