The Design of Poetry and the Poetry of Design: 8 Modern Templates for Writers

In a delightful twist of literary triumph, Instagram, the social media platform that notably demoted the written word to a supporting role, has emerged as a favored platform for celebrating it. Poetry is having a moment there. Poets such as Rupi Kaur and R. M. Drake, who boast 2.4 million and 1.8 million followers, respectively, are connecting with audiences in big ways on Instagram, and the success is translating offline, too. Poetry sales in 2017 were twice those of 2016, and the trend doesn’t appear to be slowing down any time soon.

In some ways the success of poetry in this visual format is not surprising: aesthetic considerations, such as font, alignment, and spacing, have always been important in the transmission of poetry. And perhaps that’s why many instapoets opt for a visual format that mimics the book-reading experience: ample blank space with a neutral or white background and typewriter-inspired font. But there are more ways than one to put your best metrical foot forward.

In honor of National Poetry Month, we created remixable templates that help you do just that. Take a cue from the “verse” in each template (we know, we know, we’re not winning any Pulitzers) to guide your design and get your muses singing. These 8 templates can help you channel your inner bard and let your insta-verse flow!

In a sea of photographs #writersofinstagram are standing out by pairing type with image. Most Insta-poetry consists of subtle light fonts, which compels readers to stop scrolling and linger a little longer. Create brand consistency for your writing by choosing a color palette and playing with Spark Post’s multi-text styling to punctuate certain lines or words.

Subtle fonts and petite sizing can help slow the scroll because people need to stop to read your message.

Deliver your self-truths in simple clean designs that play up empty space. This template can be easily used over and over by subbing out the background image and text, so you can focus on the writing and let Spark take care of your visual consistency.

Repetition isn’t just a device in writing—it’s also a powerful tool to create eye-catching designs. This design is inspired by one of our favorite Spark users, writer and artist Morgan Harper Nichols who uses design to punch up her relatable mantras and poems.

Take a cue from classic visual poetry devices like the designs above to punch up your words for the ‘gram. These designs were made using transparent PNGs and Spark Post’s multi-style text.

A haiku about a haiku. We’re nothing if not meta around here.

Be sure to share your writing with #adobespark on social! We love reposting work from writers in the Spark community.