Prose is information.
Ideally, it would be enjoyably presented information. Occasionally, someone would "nail it", recounting a narrative so perfectly that attendees would want to preserve it exactly as performed. This might include gestures and inflections but would, at the very least, require that the words not be changed. Thus:
|Earl the Squirrel's Rule #67|
Because of its cultural, entertainment, legal, religious (e.g. the verses of the Bible, Torah, Quran, etc.), and historical value, preliterate societies expended considerable resources memorizing poetry. One of humankind's first sciences was prosody: a collection of crowd-pleasing memory aids designed to ease the task of retention. Thus:
Prosody is mnemonics.
Because it needed to be memorized, poetry became more concise and featured more repetitions: phonemes (assonance, consonance, alliteration), syllables (rhyme), feet (rhythm), stich length (meter), words and phrases (anaphora, anadiplosis), whole lines (repetends), and stanzas (choruses).
Thus, [prose] stories are told. Poetry is recited. Also, prose is created by its author. Poetry is created by its audience.
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