Okay kids, so we have discussed Shakespeare's use of Blank Verse or Iambic Pentameter, but here is where it gets good, and relevant for you.

Like I said in class, much of Hip Hop and Rap just also happens to be in Iambic Pentameter. While "Lose Yourself" is not all iambic Pentameter - the first verse certainly is.

Can you hear it?  Here is a clean version of the song. Listen to the first verse.
The verse below starts at :54 seconds and ends about 1:19.

His PALMS are SWEATy, KNEES weak, ARMS are HEAVy 
There's VOmit ON his SWEATer alREADy, mom's spaGHETTi
He's NERVous, but ON the SURFace he LOOKS calm and READy 
To DROP BOMBS, but HE keeps ON forGETtin 
What HE wrote DOWN, the WHOLE crowd GOES so LOUD 
He OPens his MOUTH, BUT the WORDS won't come OUT
He's CHOKin, how EVeryBODy's JOKin NOW
The CLOCK'S run OUT, TIME'S up OVer, BLOah!

Can you find a verse of a song that fits? If you do separate it into feet as well. I'd love for some verses (clean please) to be added to the comment section


Emoni Gibbs
11/05/2012 15:52

I don't understand how to interpret iambic rthym!! please help because i am lost!!!

11/05/2012 15:53

I don't understand how to interpret iambic rythm!! please help because i am lost!!!

Ms Cronk
11/05/2012 19:48

Okay here are few points:

1. each iamb is a stressed and unstressed syllable together, it almost sounds like a heartbeat. so this sentence:

His PALMS are SWEATy, KNEES weak, ARMS are HEAVy

is actually 5 iambs ..

1(His PALMS) 2(are SWEATy), 3(KNEES weak), 4 (ARMS are)
5 (HEAVy)

(Pentameter means that there are 5 Iambs in the line, Iambs can also be referred to a foot/feet 1 iamb=1 foot)

Keep in mind that Shakespeare did this for his key parts because it is easier for the actors to remember their lines, kind of like memorizing a song. It also sounds great on stage.

I used this video to introduce it.

I would also suggest that you watch a couple scenes from what ever you are reading on Youtube to hear the Iambic Pentameter.

I hope this helps!!

01/28/2013 10:41

How about Eminem's "The Way I Am" and you have the pun of I AM like IAMB just as Dr. Seuss did with Sam I am in Green Eggs and Ham!

06/25/2013 22:32

That is actually written in anapestic tetrameter, at least the first verse is.

09/10/2013 13:30



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