The chief device of ancient Hebrew Biblical poetry , including many of the psalms , was parallelism , a rhetorical structure in which successive lines reflected each other in grammatical structure, sound structure, notional content, or all three. Parallelism lent itself to antiphonal or call-and-response performance, which could also be reinforced by intonation . Thus, Biblical poetry relies much less on metrical feet to create rhythm, but instead creates rhythm based on much larger sound units of lines, phrases and sentences.  Some classical poetry forms, such as Venpa of the Tamil language , had rigid grammars (to the point that they could be expressed as a context-free grammar ) which ensured a rhythm.  In Chinese poetry , tones as well as stresses create rhythm. Classical Chinese poetics identifies four tones : the level tone, rising tone, departing tone, and entering tone .