PoetryDiffusion: Towards Joint Semantic and Metrical Manipulation in Poetry Generation

14 Jun 2023  ·  Zhiyuan Hu, Chumin Liu, Yue Feng, Anh Tuan Luu, Bryan Hooi ·

Controllable text generation is a challenging and meaningful field in natural language generation (NLG). Especially, poetry generation is a typical one with well-defined and strict conditions for text generation which is an ideal playground for the assessment of current methodologies. While prior works succeeded in controlling either semantic or metrical aspects of poetry generation, simultaneously addressing both remains a challenge. In this paper, we pioneer the use of the Diffusion model for generating sonnets and Chinese SongCi poetry to tackle such challenges. In terms of semantics, our PoetryDiffusion model, built upon the Diffusion model, generates entire sentences or poetry by comprehensively considering the entirety of sentence information. This approach enhances semantic expression, distinguishing it from autoregressive and large language models (LLMs). For metrical control, the separation feature of diffusion generation and its constraint control module enable us to flexibly incorporate a novel metrical controller to manipulate and evaluate metrics (format and rhythm). The denoising process in PoetryDiffusion allows for gradual enhancement of semantics and flexible integration of the metrical controller which can calculate and impose penalties on states that stray significantly from the target control distribution. Experimental results on two datasets demonstrate that our model outperforms existing models in automatic evaluation of semantic, metrical, and overall performance as well as human evaluation.

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