realism - The attempt to portray life and nature as it actually is without idealisation. (See also classicism, imagism, impressionism, objectivism, romanticism, symbolism)

reduplicated words - See ricochet words.

refrain - A line, phrase or word which is repeated regularly in a poem, usually at the end of a stanza or separating stanzas. (See also echo, incremental repetition, repeated)

repeated - The word, phrase or partial phrase which is repeated at irregular intervals in a poem. (See also echo, incremental repetition, refrain)

resonance - The use of word sounds such as alliteration, assonance and consonance to create a texture in a poem. (See also alliteration, assonance, consonance, euphony)

rhapsody – Formerly a shorter or abridged epic poem suitable for recitation at one time; more commonly now the stringing together of a medley of disconnected pieces; however, it often connotes the expression of undisciplined emotions.

rhetoric - Speaking or writing effectively. The study and analysis of speaking and writing and the use of figures of speech. (See also figure of speech)

rhetorical question - A question asked for effect, without requiring an answer.

rhyme - The exact or close similarity of the final accented syllables between words, when the preceding syllables are different. As in "flight" and "night". (See also assonance, consonance, alliteration, near rhyme, half rhyme, perfect rhyme, rime riche, rime)

rhyme royal - Poetic form of seven lines in iambic pentameter, rhyming ababbcc.

rhyme scheme - The pattern of rhyme in a poem. Written down as letters of the alphabet corresponding to lines in the poem and each rhyme awarded a different letter, as in ababcc, any capital letters representing the refrain. (See also refrain)

rhymester - A writer of inferior poetry. (See also doggerel, poetaster, versifier)

rhyming slang - A slang developed in Great Britain, where a word is exchanged for a word or phrase which rhymes with it. As in "Tit for tat" being used for "hat"; with use the phrase was often contracted, leaving the unrhymed part as the substitute. As in "titf’r" for "hat".

rhythm - Rhythm develops from the accents in a poem, which are a result of the stress structure of the metrical feet employed by the poet. (See also ictus, modulation, sprung rhythm, stress, metrical feet, cadence, caesura)

rich rhyme - See perfect rhyme.

ricochet words - Two words joined by a hyphen which are only slightly different from each other. As in hob-nob, pitter-patter, tick-tock. (See also nonce word, portmanteau word)

riding rhyme – Verse written in heroic couplets by Chaucer in the Pilgrim Tales, known as "riding rhyme" because it mimics the riding of the pilgrims. (See also heroic couplets)

rime - The original but now archaic form of the word rhyme.

rime enchaînée - (REEM-oh-shay-NAY) See chain rhyme.

rime-riche - (REEM-REESH) See perfect rhyme.

romance - Originally used to indicate a poem depicting valiant and heroic acts.

romantic - Describes the literature of the romantic movement: more concerned with feeling than with thought, it is characterised by detailed local colour, often with prolific descriptions and a general interest in the Middle Ages but also in the recent past as in Scott’s Waverley novels.

romanticism - Late 18th and early 19th century movement placing emphasis on imagination and emotions. (See also classicism, idealism, imagism, impressionism, metaphysical, objectivism, realism, symbolism, romantic)

rondeau - Poetry form of fifteen lines in three stanzas, with only two rhymes, and a refrain. The rhyme scheme is aabba aab(refrain) aabba (refrain). The refrain is taken from the first half of line one. (See also rondel, rondelet, roundel, villanelle)

rondel - a variation of the rondeau, where the first two lines are repeated as the last two lines of the following stanzas, the scheme being abba abab abbaa(b). (See also rondeau, rondelet, roundel, villanelle)

rondelet - Short version of the rondeau, one seven-line stanza with two rhymes. The first line of four syllables is repeated as the third and seventh lines. The other lines have eight syllables: thus abRabbR. (See also rondeau, rondelet, roundel, villanelle)

roundel - A form of rondeau with a rhyming scheme abaR bab abaR, with the first line of the first stanza used as the final line of the first and third stanzas.

roundelay - A poem with a refrain. (See also refrain)

rune - An old Finnish poem. (See also edda, skald)

run-on couplet - See open couplet

run-on lines - lines in which the idea expressed carries on into the next line. (See also enjambment, end-stopped, open couplet)