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Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry Liturgical Verse The Chant is from Latin cantus, meaning song, but this genre of verse dates back far beyond the days of Homer and Virgil. As most verse, it began as an oral tradition and it probably was heard echoing off the walls of cave dwellers in prehistoric times. The chant is verse in which a word, phrase, line and rhythm is repeated again and again. The repetition is strong and the rhythm hypnotic. But it didn't get left behind in the caves, more modern verse forms or poetic genres have employed elements of the chant, such as the blues and slave