Above image courtesy of: https://www.slideshare.net/teachersheen/
How to Write a Heroic or Elegiac Quatrain
As the above image suggests, a Heroic (or Elegiac) Quatrain is any poem written using four line stanzas usually with a rhyme scheme of ABAB, and written in iambic pentameter.
Easy enough, right?
So what is iambic pentameter, then?
Iambic pentameter basically refers to the beat or meter of a line. An iamb is a set of two syllables (also called feet), the first unstressed, followed by stressed. So out loud, the beat of the syllables in each line would sound like this: “tum-TUM tum-TUM tum-TUM tum-TUM tum-TUM”, which equals ten total syllables per line (pentameter). It sounds almost like a heart beat. Each “tum-TUM” is an iamb; pentameter means there are 5 iambs per line, totaling 10 syllables.
Here’s a decent video explanation:
For more information or examples on iambic pentameter, click here (or put google to task).
And finally, here’s an example of one of my own heroic quatrain poems: