Elements of Poetry
http://homepage.mac.com/rush723/school/Elements%20of%20Poetry.htmhttp://www.buzzle.com/articles/basic-elements-of-poetry.htmllhttp://www.dscc.edu/weeks/elements_of_poetry.htmWRITING AND GRAMMAR Prentice Hall 2001
Suggestions for Reading Poetry Read the poem more than once Look up unfamiliar words Listen for patterns of sound in the poem Pay attention; don't "drift off" Read the poem aloud to hear it
Look For These Points in the Poems Who is the speaker?
What is the occasion?
What is the point of the poem?
ALLITERATIONAlliteration occurs when the initial sounds of a word, beginning either with a consonant or a vowel, are repeated in close succession. Examples: Athena and Apollo Nate never knows People who pen poetry
ALLUSIONAn indirect reference to a well-known person, place, event, literary work, or work of art.
ie: In Ode on a Grecian Urn,the pictures on the face of the urn might appear to be simple artwork, but they allude to episodes in the poem.
ASSONANCEAssonance occurs when the vowel sound within a word matches the same sound in a nearby word, but the surrounding consonant sounds are different. "Tune" and "June" are rhymes; but "tune" and "food" are assonant (the rhyme is in the vowel sounds only)
DENOTATION Denotation is the objective meaning of a word.
Denotation can best be remembered as the literal, dictionary meaning of a word.
CONNOTATION The connotative meaning of a word is based on implication, or shared emotional association with a word. Connotation is best defined as the emotional feeling one gets from a wordnegative or positive.
Think of how you connect with a word you read in a poem is the feeling positive or negative?
DICTIONDiction refers to both the choice and the order of words.
Elevated diction is the use of larger, more meaningful words.
Low diction is the use of more common words.
IMAGEAs one reads a poem, the mind's eye begins to paint a picture. This image is what helps one to recall the details of the poem.
Poetic imagery alters or shapes the way we see what the poem is describing.
The use of descriptive language in poetry to appeal to the reader's senses and emotions.
IRONYIrony refers to a difference between the way something appears and what is actually true. Irony refers to a surprising, amusing, or interesting contradiction.The key to irony is often the tone, which is sometimes harder to detect in poetry than in speech.
METAPHORMetaphors immediately identify one object or idea with another, in one or more aspects. Metaphors compare two or more items without using like or as to relate them.
"He's such a pig!" "She's a real goat!"
METERMeter is the rhythm established by a poem, and it is usually dependent not only on the number of syllables in a line but also on the way those syllables are accented (stressed and unstressed.) The rhythmic unit is often described as a foot; patterns of feet can be identified and labeled. A foot may be iambic, which follows a beat pattern of unstressed and stressed syllables. ( / ) stressed ( )unstressed
example of Meter:For example, read aloud: "The DOG went WALKing DOWN the ROAD and BARKED." Look at the capitalized words. They carry a loud beat. The beats will tell you how many iambs there are in this foot. Because there are five iambs, this line follows the conventions of iambic pentameter (pent = five), the common form in Shakespeare's time. The loud parts are stressed syllables and are labeled with a "/" slash mark above and unstressed syllables with a "U" mark above.
Example of how to label the meter of a line...
U / U / U / U /The DOG went WALKing DOWN the ROAD U / and BARKED.
RHYME RHYTHMThe basic definition of rhyme is two words that sound alike. There are varieties of rhyme: internal rhyme functions within a line of poetry.The more common end rhyme occurs at the end of the line and at the end of some other line, usually within the same stanza.
The pattern of words that accent or form beats at fixed intervals in the poem.
SIMILE STANZAA comparison of two or more unrelated things using like or as.
A group of lines in a poem, seen as a unit, much like a paragraph.
SYMBOLA symbol works two ways: It has a literal meaning, and it also suggests something deeper.
It is crucial to distinguish a symbol from a metaphor: Metaphors are comparisons between two seemingly dissimilar things; symbols associate two things, but their meaning is both literal and figurative.
Apple pie: literally, a dessert / symbolically, it represents innocence or homespun values. Raven: literally, a black bird / symbolically, it represents death.
TONEThe tone of a poem is roughly equivalent to the mood it creates in the reader. Think of an actor reading a line such as "I could kill you." He can read it in a few different ways: If he thinks the proper tone is murderous anger, he might scream the line and cause the veins to bulge in his neck. He might assume the tone of cool power and murmur the line in a low, even voice. Perhaps he does not mean the words at all and laughs as he says them. Much depends on interpretation.
The poet will convey his attitude toward the subject of the poem in the tone of the wording or language he/she uses. It might be happy, sad, anxious, remorseful, etc.
WORD ORDERWord order matterssometimes for clarity of meaning (a solo guitar isn't the same as a guitar solo) and sometimes for effect ("a dying man" is roughly the same as "a man, dying," but the effect of the word order matters).