See in text (A Red, Red Rose)
Like the ballads from which Burns adapted some of the lines in this poem, “A Red, Red Rose” is written in ballad measure, also known as common meter. The rhyme scheme in ballad measure is a b c b. The first and third lines are iambic tetrameter, which means four iambs per line. The second and fourth lines are iambic trimeter: three iambs per line. An iamb is a pair of syllables, of which the first is unstressed and the second is stressed. Ballads like “A Red, Red, Rose” were often meant to be sung; historically, ballads were folk songs passed down from one generation to the next.