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I would like to layout a professionally designed book containing poems. What template should I use?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

See the LaTeX package verse for typesetting poems: http://www.ctan.org/tex-archive/macros/latex/contrib/verse/

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I would highly recommend the memoir document class for latex. It has it's own version of the verse environment, plus a lot more nice things. Check the section in the memoir manual, it's a thing of beauty all on it's own.

Anyway, the relevant bits I gleaned from Memoir are below. The re-defining of the macro \PoemTitle makes the otherwise centered poem title flush with the left edge of the poem body.


\normalfont\scshape\flushleft% Remove centering from poem title
\hspace*{0.5\linewidth}\hspace*{-0.5\versewidth}}% Makes poem title flush left with body block.



\settowidth{\versewidth}{my looooongest poem line} 
\PlainPoemTitle % Removes the counter from \PoemTitle
\PoemTitle{My Poem Title}

This is my poem,\\
isn't it nice?\\
This is my poem,\\
please read it twice\\
and one,\\
loooooooooooong poem line\\
right at the end!\\

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