# Formatting verse: How to change indent for all even lines?

Is it possible to format a verse like this:

(sorry for an example that is not in English, I just don't have English text with such formatting on hand. )

I mean the following formatting:

each even line of the verse has an indent, while odd lines haven't. I would like to make it automatically for the verses of different length, so that I don't need to manually change indent for each even line.

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A question: what a poem is it? It seems te be rather old... –  Przemysław Scherwentke Jul 7 '14 at 10:11
@Przemysław Scherwentke This is from "Vertograd Mnogocvetnyj", a collection of poems written by Simeon Polockij (Russian poet of 17th century). It has strong influence of Old Church Slavonic language. –  yukari Jul 7 '14 at 10:14

From the manual of the verse package:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{verse}
\begin{document}

\settowidth{\versewidth}{In a cavern, in a canyon,}
\poemtitle{Clementine}
\begin{verse}[\versewidth]
\poemlines{2}
\begin{altverse}
\flagverse{1.} In a cavern, in a canyon, \\
Excavating for a mine, \\
Lived a miner, forty-niner, \label{vs:49} \\
And his daughter, Clementine. \\!
\end{altverse}
\begin{altverse}
\flagverse{\textsc{chorus}} Oh my darling, Oh my darling, \\
Oh my darling Clementine. \\
Thou art lost and gone forever, \\
Oh my darling Clementine \\!
\end{altverse}
\poemlines{0}
\end{verse}
\end{document}


Probably the patverse* environment could be helpful as well.

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+1. Reading the documentation is better than ad hoc solutions. –  Przemysław Scherwentke Jul 7 '14 at 10:43

An ad hoc solution. It should be polished, in particular, the definition is to be moved outside verse.

\documentclass{article}

\begin{document}

\let\oldnl=\\

\newcount\evenv
\begin{verse}
\evenv1\relax%
$\,$\\
To be, or not to be, that is the question—\\
Whether 'tis Nobler in the mind to suffer\\
The Slings and Arrows of outrageous Fortune,\\
Or to take Arms against a Sea of troubles,\\
And by opposing end them? To die, to sleep—\\
No more; and by a sleep, to say we end\\
The Heart-ache, and the thousand Natural shocks\\
That Flesh is heir to? 'Tis a consummation\\
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep,\\
To sleep, perchance to Dream; Aye, there's the rub,
\end{verse}

\end{document}


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