Copyright

What is a Verse? - Definition & Examples

Instructor: Stephanie Przybylek

Stephanie has taught studio art and art history classes to audiences of all ages. She holds a master's degree in Art History.

Do you have a favorite song? Have you ever thought about its lyrics? What part of the song tells the story? In this lesson, learn about song verses and explore some examples.

Verse Definition

A verse is a series of lyrics that tell the main story of the song and keep the action or thoughts moving forward. Verses are an important part of a song. A song may have one verse or many -- whatever the number, they take the main idea and explore it in different ways. Usually verses are a similar length and have a meter or pulse. Take your favorite song and speak one or more of the verses. They move almost the same way even though the words are different. We all have favorite songs -- for yours, can you sing all the verses?

Example: Verse and Refrain

The simplest song structure uses only verses. Here's an example: 'When You Wish Upon A Star', which was written for Walt Disney's animated version of Pinocchio (1940). This favorite from the classic film features four simple two-line verses. The first is as follows: 'When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are; Anything your heart desires, will come to you.' That's it. Simple, concise and heartfelt.

Other types of structures include songs that use a refrain at the end of each verse, a repeated line or phrase that emphasizes the main point. An example of this song type is 'What a Wonderful World' by Louis Armstrong (you've probably heard it in a movie or TV show). It begins with a verse that says: 'I see trees of green, red roses too, I see them bloom for me and you . . . ' After more description, this verse ends with the phrase, 'And I think to myself what a wonderful world.' The song goes on to celebrate clouds and sky, night and day, and other things we see around us. The verses emphasize the beauty and variety of life, and each ends with, 'And I think to myself what a wonderful world.'

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account
Support