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Poetry Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost

Robert Frost constructed this poem with four stanzas in iambic tetrameter. Frost’s rhyme scheme is intriguing; the first, second, and fourth lines of each stanza rhyme, where as the third rhymes with the next set of first, second, and fourth lines. Although, this pattern is broken in the fourth and final stanza, where Frost rhymes all the lines with the third line in the third stanza. To finish off the poem, the fifteenth line is repeated as the last line (aaba, bbcb, ccdc, dddd). The poem’s title is a very straightforward description of the poem itself, since it says exactly what is going on in the delicately placed An Explication of Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening Robert Frost…

Analyze Donne’s Duplicity as a Lover in His Poems

John Donne is not only the greatest love poet of his time, but also surpasses the limitation of times. Donne’s greatness as a love-poet arises from the fact that his poetry covers a wider range of emotions. He was the first English poet to challenge and break the supremacy of Petrarchan tradition. Though at times he adopts the Petrarchan devices, yet his imagery and rhythm, texture and color of his love poetry is different. There are three distinct strains of his love poetry – Cynical, Platonic and Conjugal love. The Sun Rising is one of Donne’s popular and widely read love poems. It is love poem of an unusual kind. In this poem the poet lover reprimands the Sun and…

Analysis of the Poem: The Darkling Thrush

Speaker: The speaker in the first two stanzas is portrayed as pessimistic and dark, but this changed in the two last stanzas. In any case, the speaker is conveyed to have strong feelings for nature. Form: Rhyming scheme is clearly visible giving to poem a rhythm. The 3rd stanza’s rhyming scheme seems to have been modified, if not a little disturbed having a not as good phonetic ending at the end of each stanza conveying the speaker’s disturbance and surprise at the appearance of the thrush. Imagery: L.1 the coppice became a gate conveying that it’s not in its natural state, humans could have modified it. L2: “When Frost was spectre-grey” a spectre/ghost is something dangerous, menacing, conveying Frost is…

Modernism in poetry

Modernism. It is a direction of poetry, literature and art in general that uses and describes “new and distinctive features in the subjects, forms, concepts and styles of literature and the other arts in the early decades of the present century, but especially after World War I. ” (Abrams 167) More often than not “Modernism” engages in “deliberate and radical break” (Abrams 167) with more traditional foundation of art and culture, established since XIX century. Here two poets of modernist age – T. S. Elliot and H. Crane – are compared to T. Hardy and G. M. Hopkins, a pair of contemporary classical poets. I’d like to begin the study with T. S. Elliot, the famous poet whose very name…

Metaphysical Poetry and John Donne

Define metaphysical poetry, its characteristics and John Donne as a metaphysical poet. The concept metaphysical deals with the philosophical view of the nature of things. Metaphysical poetry is often mentioned as poetry inspired by a philosophical concept of the universe and the role assigned to the human spirit in the great drama of existence. Metaphysical poetry is involved with the whole experience of man, but the intelligence, learning and seriousness of the poets. Metaphysical poetry has an amazing power to explore and express ideas and feelings about the world and its diverse phenomena in a rational way to captivate the readers. Metaphysical poems are lyric poems. A group of 17th-century poets, whose work is characterized by the use of complex…

Naming of Parts

1. What is the ‘naming of parts’ that the title of the poem refers to? The naming of parts refers to the rifle lesson in the poem, with the soldiers being taught about the parts of the rifle. 2. The first stanza identifies the timeframe of this poem. Explain why ‘yesterday’, ‘today’ and ‘tomorrow’ might be significant. This talks about the past, present and future, which is why it is significant. 3. Explain the simile that compares Japonica to coral (lines 4-5). Japonica is a pink flower that blossoms in bunches on trees in the spring. The poem compares the colour of the japonica to coral, and how it glows and shines. It talks about the beauty of the flowers,…

Derek Walcott Uses Poetry to Explore Themes of Ethnicity

I agree with the fact that Walcott uses poetry to explore themes of ethnicity, cultural chauvinism and political inequality. However, these aren’t the only themes we find in his poetry. He also makes use of themes such as life and death and religion. Sea Canes is one of the poems which includes the themes mentioned above. In Sea Canes the poet is found observing a landscape in which he can see sea canes and animals, all of this in a miserable atmosphere; “Half of my friends are dead.” Here he also mentions religion and disagrees with it by stating that religion is not necessary to respect the dead. He prefers to remember them exactly how they were, instead of see…

Nettles by Vernon Scannell

The poem ‘Nettles’ by Vernon Scannell revolves around a father’s perspective on an accident involving his son, through which the poet explores a father-son relationship, wherein the father tries to protect his son from the various difficulties in life. However, despite his efforts to shield his son from these problems, they will be a constant threat in life. The boy here is a metaphor for the army, with the nettles being an extended metaphor of recurring war. The combined effect of these metaphors throws light on the difficulties in life. The poet has crafted a title which aptly uses symbolism to depict the nettles as evil. A cursory reading of the poem portrays the protective instinct of a father for…

“Spinster” by Sylvia Plath

The word “Spinster” ,which is the title of the poem written by Sylvia Plath, in its literal sense denotes “single, unattached or free”. With this plain interpretation alone, you supposed to spot in an instant what could be the perspective of this poem, you may think that it is all about a person who lives alone, unmarried or unaided. This is merely gazing on the title itself, but when you come across on the entire poem deeper leaks on its real context will be unscrewed. The first stanza of the poem signifies a girl who had a sudden realization towards what she really feels for her suitor during their way out.”Ceremonious April walk” this line represents the time/moment wherein the…

Modernist poetry

Modernist poetry tends to break many of the structured rules of poems published previously. Walt Whitman’s “When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer,” “buffalo bill” by e. e. cummings, and “Mirror” by Sylvia Plath are definitely very different poems in subject. However, what they share is a “modern” view of poetry. They all “break the mold” in subject and especially structure. In cummings “buffalo bill,” cummings “breaks the mold” both in structure and in syntax. His lack of punctuation and capitalization are unique to his own style. Cummings seems to compare himself to Bill Cody in that Buffalo Bill was really a facade. He rode “a watersmooth silver stallion,” which means that he didn’t really ride a stallion at all. He…

‘Poetry’ by Marianne Moore Analysis

In the poem, Moore dissects the meaning and understanding of poetry. She tries to make a point of the importance and usefulness of poetry to a person. There is the mention that most people do not take the time to appreciate something of they do not understand it. From research on this poet I have discovered that she has a unique writing style that she is referencing in the poem. There are a few images in her poem like when she writes, “Hands that can grasp, eyes that can dilate, hair that can rise…” Another example of imagery is, “elephants pushing, a wild horse taking a roll, a tireless wolf under a tree…” There are also other poetic elements in…

Two Gentlemen of Verona and Why Is Sylvia

Both poems are written by William Shakespeare. They originate from two different sources. One is part of a play, Two Gentlemen of Verona. The other is a poem found in a bundle with various other poems written by Shakespeare. The poems have the same theme, as love and infatuation are the main topics. Their purpose is to portray a person in such a way that the reader can visualize the topic and enter into the writer’s experience. The song ‘Why is Sylvia’ is organized into three five-line stanzas. Each of the stanzas uses the rhyme scheme of ABABA within. While you might, at a glance, note the ‘-ings’ in all five lines of the third stanza. The A lines are…

Meaning of Life and Poem

`Tis he who always tears our books, Who leaves the door ajar, He pulls the buttons from our shirts, And scatters pine afar; That squeaking door will always squeak, For, prithee, don’t you see, We leave the oiling to be done By Mr. Nobody He puts damp wood upon the fire, That kettles cannot boil; His are the feet that bring in mud, And all the carpets soiled. The papers always are mislaid, Who had them last but he? There’s no one tosses them about But Mr. Nobody. The finger marked upon the door By none of us are made; We never leave the blind unclosed, To let the curtains fade. The ink we never spill; the boots That lying…

Figures of Speech

Poets use different figures of speech to convey the message of their works. Some poets use metaphors or similes to baffle the mind and force the body to feel and see the images created while others use paradox, hyperboles, or puns to create the same effect. A good poem should involve all the senses and make the mind work to find meaning. William Blake uses metaphors to make the mind work overtime to find multiple meanings in his work “To See a World in a Grain of Sand”, while Chidiock Tichborne uses paradox to baffle the mind and reiterate the single meaning in his work “Elegy, Written With His Own Hand Before His Execution”. “To See a World in a…

Robert Browning

The dramatic monologue form which is now widely used, allows the author to engage his reader more directly by placing him in the role of listener. Often they are to interpret about a dramatic event or experience they are reading about. This allows the reader to become more intimate with the writer and the characters while being able to understand the speaker’s changing thoughts and feelings. This is almost like being inside the mind of the speaker not the writer though. The speech is delivered by a character in a play allowing the imagination of the reader to remain open. Many poets have used some type of dramatic monologue forms in their poetry but none as much or as skilled…

Vitae Summa Brevis Spem Nos Vetat Incohare Longam by Ernest Dowson

This poem is by Ernest Dowson (1867-1900). Merely discussing him is a sad matter, because Dowson was both a student at Oxford for a time and a severe alcoholic whose life ended far too early. We can extend the parallel further in he was a Roman Catholic by conversion. We should not be surprised that he titled his poem in Latin; this was in the days, after all, when a knowledge of Latin was considered indispensable to a good education. So that is why students of English poetry find themselves faced with these Latin words at the head of the poem: Vitae Summa Brevis Spem Nos Vetat Incohare Longam It means, essentially, that the brief (brevis) sum (summa) of life…

No More Hiroshima and Slough Poem Comparision

There can be no doubt that “Slough” and “No More Hiroshima’s” share a large collection of differences. However, they additionally have similarities. The poem “Slough” written by John Betjeman and is expressing his hatred for the place. This becomes apparent from the beginning when he ask for “friendly bombs, come fall on slough. ” The satirical humour and juxtaposition of “friendly” and “bomb” are ironic and portray a dark image of the place, and this is continued throughout the poem with words such as “Death”, and “Hell”. Moreover, the imagery of the poem is ferocious and ghastly which greats a sense of negativity towards Slough. The poem “No More Hiroshima’s” by James Kirkup shares a similarity with Slough due to…

Factory Work

In Deborah Boe’s “Factory Work” (n.d.) the author paints a picture of the monotonous and sometimes dangerous work that goes on in the life of a low income factory worker. The character remarks how the hot glue machine she works “ate” her shirt once, and how one of her co-workers used to have long hair until the machine “got” it. The character has been doing the same repetitive job over and over. Now she no longer needs to think about what she is doing and her mind wanders as she is working. While the character thinks that it isn’t bad in the factory, there is an overall sense of boredom and sadness with the life she leads. People from a…

Kenneth Slessor Speech: Critical studies of Texts

”The gulls go down the body dies and rots, and time flows past them like the hundred yachts.” Kenneth Slessor, a renowned poet and journalist was born on the 27th of March 1901 in Orange, New South Wales. Throughout his eventful life, Slessor was able to compose an array of poems through which he was able to convey his experiences through life. But why exactly are his poems still considered so relevant and significant in this era? Firstly, Slessor’s poems were widely recognised for their ability to accurately depict his understanding of humanity, life, death and change. Across his oeuvre he conveys a unique yet consistent view of the meaning of life and death. He presents this through the use…

Music in Nature

Music When music sounds, gone is the earth I know, And all her lovely things even lovelier grow; Her flowers in vision flame, her forest trees Lift burdened branches, stilled with ecstasies. When music sounds, out of the water rise Naiads whose beauty dims my waking eyes, Rapt in strange dreams burns each enchanted face, With solemn echoing stirs their dwelling-place. When music sounds, all that I was I am Ere to this haunt of Brooding dust I came; And from Time’s woods break into distant song The swift-winged hours, as I hasten along. In the first stanza, Music renders Nature beyond flowers into “vision flame”, trees that “Lift burdened branches, stilled with ecstasies.” The word “stilled” could mean instilled…

The Dead Poet Society

The Dead Poet Society explains that we may not appreciate poetry by reading a book. Poetry has a lot of meaning that can be change by our experiences. Poetry is like our life, living to pursue our dreams and that’s poetry all about-our life that needs love, beauty and romance. Life doesn’t stop for anything or anybody, like poetry, open for expression. It allows the realizations of our ability. Verbalize what we think, what we know and what we feel. Poetry is alive, not merely a text or concept of mind but comparable as experiences that make us complete. Complete that we see who we are and not just who we should be or who we are told to be….

Poetry

Understanding and interpreting poetry requires a different method of reading than the method which is generally associated with prose. While a given poem, especially a lyric poem, may be literally read in a matter of minutes, the comprehension of the poem may take a lifetime. This is due to the extraordinary ability of poets to compress meanings and also develop complex and multi-layered associations of language, figurative language, image, rhyme, and even narrative within a very brief literary forms. Contemplating a poem is as much a part of experiencing it as merely reading a poem. In the hands of a talented and inspired poet, the minimal use of words and the seemingly constricted forms offered by poetry are actually platforms…

Hathaway’s Poetry

William Hathaway is a combat war veteran who has written many novels regarding war and men (Rommel). He usually takes mature and intimate subjects and topics. However, one of his poems entitled “Oh, Oh” catches none of these ideas. This is what makes the poem different. Instead of the usual subjects, Hathaway tackles a very childlike mirth in this poem. Although the use of words is quite complex and thought-provoking, the poem speaks of the young love blooming in the midst of a created world. This passionate poem with its rich imagery is an elegant example of two figures of speech, namely, irony and onomatopoeia. The imagery constructed by Hathaway in the poem is evident in many of the descriptions…

I Heard a Fly Buzz When I Died and After the Apple PIcking: An Analysis

A poet uses the elements of poetry to express his/her theme. This is particularly true in the poems I Heard a Fly Buzz When I Died by Emily Dickinson and After the Apple Picking by Robert Frost. Both poets use metaphor and rhyme scheme to accentuate the themes of these two famous poems by two of America’s most beloved poets. Metaphors, comparing two unlike or unrelated things, are essential to poetry and the purpose of poetry is to evoke an emotional response. Therefore, there must be a theme, or main point, to a poem and that point is what will awaken emotion in the reader. I Heard a Fly Buzz When I Died is a work that when the title…

Poetry Walt Whitman I Hear America Singing

In I Hear America Singing Walt Whitman paid tribute to the workers of America. Whitman included every worker that he could think of, including the women and the girls who stayed home and do house chores. Whitman pictured them as happy and contented people who put dignity and respect in labor. In the poem the worker carried the physical burden of his work with a light heart that made him sing. In the first line, the entire country was euphoric and they sang different songs in unison. Whitman used varied carols to describe the emotion of America. Carols were usually sang on Christmas seasons when people were upbeat and matched perfectly the celebratory mood of the holidays. In the poem…

Poetry

The poem described the speaker’s longing and hope for her happiness in life. As she raises everyday, she depicts life at its best to fulfill her joy and contentment even if she is alone. The four stanza poem discussed the character’s identity and idea towards joy and contentment in life. The speaker wants to convey to her readers that whatever circumstances they may have; it is a great start to thank God for a new day of life. The first stanza discussed the emotions of the speaker as she faces the new day. The second stanza discussed how she thanked her creator for the new beginning of challenges and happiness. The third stanza discussed how the speaker prayed for the…

A Formalist Approach on A Supermarket in California by Allen Ginsberg

Allen Ginsberg is considered to be one of the most influential poet of all time. He is regarded one of the most influential personalities of the beat generation during the 1950’s and 1960’s. His works became known for assaulting the prevalent conformity and materialism in the United States during his time. One of his best known work is the poem “A Supermarket in California. ” It would be very interesting to approach a work of Ginsberg according to formalist standards. A formalist approach the work of Ginsberg would only reveal to us that he deliberately breaks-off from the conventions set by formalism. According to the criterion of formalism, an art work should only be judged according to the set conventions…

Poetry Lesson

2. In “The Winter Evening Settles Down,” T.S. Eliot described the end of a day during winter in a city.  But in his description, the poet did not simply portray how winter evenings dawn.  Instead, he uses the words to express how he saw his environment during the time and what he feels about the era.  The lines of the poem speak of modern decay as characterized, for example, by the words “grimy scraps.”  His view of the world at that point are summarized the few lines of his poem.  The withered leaves dropping to the ground, the loneliness of the streets and the cold gust of winds relate to how the world was fading into decline from the author’s…

A Biographical Approach to the Poem The Whipping by Robert Hayden

Robert Hayden is one of the best-known American poets of his time. However, he is also one of the most underrated poets of all time, arguably not as much accolades as other poets of the same era. His poems exude admirable sincerity and tremendous grasp of poetic devices. His beautiful poem “The Whipping” is regarded as one of his finest work. A biographical approach to the poem would reveal to us that Hayden transforms his bitter memories to a sumptuous work of art. The poem is basically about a woman whipping a boy, for some reason that is not explicitly stated in the poem. The second line “is whipping the boy again” tells us that violent act is being carried…

To His Coy Mistress

“To his coy Mistress” is poem written by Andrew Marvell, and this is one of his best poems ever. Author used Carpe Diem, very interesting style of writing poetry. In this poem he describes his life and how he wanted a more time with special woman. “To his importunate Mistress” is poem which is written by Peter de Vries. He also in his poem used many things that are like in Marvell’s poem “To his coy Mistress. The first sentence is same in both poem, so many writers considered that his story is copy of the Marvell’s “To his coy Mistress”. The first poem has three stanzas, and we can see that author in this poem want tell us that…