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How to Cite a Poem Stanza in Text in APA Format


When writing in American Psychological Association style, there are specific ways in which you should cite a poem within the text. This mostly depends on whether the poem has line numbers, canto numbers or any other specific identifying numbers. Page numbers, however, should not be included within the text.

Poems With Line Numbers

If the poem you are citing contains line numbers, you should immediately follow the line you are quoting with the name of the poem, followed by the line numbers, within parenthesis. For example: "Two roads diverged in a wood, and I --/I took the one less traveled by,/And that has made all the difference (The Road Not Taken 18-20).

Poems Without Line Numbers

When a poem is written without line numbers, the quote is followed only by the name of the work, without mention of line or page numbers. Here is one example: "Since then -- 'tis Centuries -- and yet/Feels shorter than the Day/I first surmised the Horses' Heads/Were toward Eternity" (Because I Could Not Stop For Death).

About the Author

Jen has been a professional writer since 2002 in the education nonprofit industry. Her work has been featured in the New Jersey SEEDS Annual Report, as well as several Centenary College publications, including "Centenary in the News" and the "Trustee Times." In 2009, Jen earned a Master of Arts degree in leadership and public administration from Centenary College.

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