po·​em | \ ˈpō-əm How to pronounce poem (audio) , -im, ˈpōm also ˈpȯ(-)im, ˈpō-ˌem How to pronounce poem (audio) \

Definition of poem

1 : a composition in verse
2 : something suggesting a poem (as in expressiveness, lyricism, or formal grace) the house we stayed in … was itself a poem— H. J. Laski

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Synonyms for poem


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Examples of poem in a Sentence

He wrote a poem about his parents. your assignment is to write two poems about springtime
Recent Examples on the Web And whoever wrote that poem at some point thought to themselves, 'Does this even matter? Emily Dixon, Marie Claire, "Meghan and Harry Surprised Young Poets to Celebrate Black History Month," 9 Feb. 2021 In the title poem, the narrator loses himself in paintings. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Why UCSD’s Kazim Ali wants to put some poetry into your life," 21 Nov. 2020 Nicks wrote a poem about her dream and eventually set it to music. Keaton Bell, Vogue, "Stevie Nicks Just Wants to Keep Telling Stories," 20 Oct. 2020 In one poem, a student writes of feeling like the bedroom inside a house—longing for relaxation, but often finding no tranquility. Melinda D. Anderson, The Atlantic, "Teaching Black Teens to Write the Books They Read," 1 Sep. 2020 Many praised her for the brilliant poem, as well as her Inauguration Day look, which managed to stand out among the other great coats of the day. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "President Biden's Inaugural Poet Amanda Gorman Just Signed with IMG Models," 26 Jan. 2021 Lentine loves the title poem for its invention of an insistent iris, a rhizomatous perennial that suffers death each fall, only to be reborn in the spring. Washington Post, "The symbiotic relationship between poets and the garden," 16 Dec. 2020 The poem moves from the intimate space of each interior cell to the vastness of highway traffic movement, then pulls its lens back in again to focus on those visible cells, little shining telephone faces. James Crews, New York Times, "The Body Electric," 3 Dec. 2020 The poem features one of Celan’s signature neologisms. Ruth Franklin, The New Yorker, "How Paul Celan Reconceived Language for a Post-Holocaust World," 16 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'poem.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of poem

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for poem

Middle French poeme, from Latin poema, from Greek poiēma, from poiein

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Time Traveler for poem

Time Traveler

The first known use of poem was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

21 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Poem.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/poem. Accessed 26 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for poem



English Language Learners Definition of poem

: a piece of writing that usually has figurative language and that is written in separate lines that often have a repeated rhythm and sometimes rhyme


po·​em | \ ˈpō-əm How to pronounce poem (audio) \

Kids Definition of poem

: a piece of writing often having figurative language and lines that have rhythm and sometimes rhyme

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