The elements of poetry

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Poetry is a quality of beauty and intensity of emotion regarded as characteristic of poems: "poetry and fire are nicely balanced in the music". …

Poetry is a quality of beauty and intensity of emotion regarded as characteristic of poems: "poetry and fire are nicely balanced in the music".
The words in poems are doing several jobs at the same time. They do one thing with their meaning, and another thing with their sound. Even their meaning may be working on more than one level. An important characteristic of poetry is compression, or concentrated language. I don't mean "concentrated" in the sense of paying close attention. I mean it in the sense of concentrated laundry detergent, or concentrated orange juice. A half-cup of concentrated laundry detergent does the same work as a cup of regular detergent; a poem typically gets across as much meaning as a larger amount of prose. Concentrated orange juice has the water taken out; a good poem has similarly been intensified by removing the non-essential words. This is one reason why poems are often short.


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  • 1. ELEMENTS OFPOETRYPrepared by Miss Jenny Lou C. SasoyFaculty, UE-Caloocan EHSD
  • 2. POETRY• It is the art of expressing oneself in verse.• It uses few words to convey its message.• It is meant to be read aloud.• It uses imagery or figures of speech to express feelings or create a mental picture or idea.
  • 3. "Chartless“Lines Emily Dickinson 1 I never saw a moor, 2 I never saw the sea,• A single line in a 3 Yet I know how the heather looks poem. 4 and what a wave must be.• Often organized into stanzas. 5 I never spoke with God, 6 nor visited in Heaven, 7 Yet I am certain of the spot 8 as if the chart were given. This poem has 8 lines organized into 2 stanzas.
  • 4. “First and Last”STANZA by David McCord A tadpole hasn’t a pole at all,• It is the group of And he doesn’t live in a hole in the wall. lines. You’ve got it wrong: a polecat’s not • Couplet – 2 lines A cat on a pole. And I’ll tell you what: • Triplet – 3 lines • Quatrain – 4 lines A bullfrog’s never a bull; and how Could a cowbird possibly be a cow? • Quinrain – 5 lines • Sestet – 6 lines A kingbird, though, is a kind of king, • Octet – 8 lines And he chases a crow like anything.• It develops and Four Stanzas in COUPLETS. emphasizes one idea.
  • 5. RHYME AND RHYME SCHEME• Words rhyme if they sound alike.• Poems often use rhymes at the end of lines.• Rhyme scheme is the pattern of rhymes in a poem.• Poets use rhymes to add a musical sound to their poems.
  • 6. TYPES OF RHYMEALLITERATION – repetition of the initial consonant sound.  She sells sea shells by the sea shore.CONSONANCE – repetition of the intermediate or final consonant sound. • Tick tock, flip flop, singing longingASSONANCE – repetition of vowel sound. • Hear the mellow wedding bells, Golden bells! What a world of happiness their harmony foretells!
  • 7. RHYTHM • Pattern of beats or a series of stressed and unstressed syllables in poem. • Poets create rhythm by using words in which parts are emphasized or not emphasized. “Windy Nights” By Robert Louis StevensonWhenever the moon and stars are set, Whenever the wind is high,All night long in the dark and wet, A man goes riding by.Late in the night when the fires are out,Why does he gallop and gallop about?
  • 8. METER• It is the measure of a line in a poetry.FOOT• It is the grouping of two or more syllables making up a basic unit of meter.
  • 9. TYPES OF METRICAL FOOT• IAMBIC foot consists of unaccented syllable followed by an accented. It can be heard in such words as "because, hello, Elaine".• TROCHAIC foot consists of an accented syllable followed by an unaccented. These are trochaic words: answer, Tuesday, Albert.• DACTYLIC foot consists of an accented syllable followed by two unaccented syllables. You can hear the dactylic beat in these words: beautiful, silently, Saturday.• ANAPESTIC foot consists of two unaccented syllables followed by an accented syllable. These words are anapestic: cavalier, tambourine, Marianne.• SPONDAIC foot consists of two accented syllables.• PYRRHIC foot consists of two unaccented syllables.
  • 10. “Poor” MOOD by Myra Livingston I heard of poor. Short words and• The feeling that a poem It means hungry, no food. lines create a creates in a reader. No shoes, no place to live, serious mood.• It can be positive or negative. Nothing good.• Mood can be made with the length of the It means winter nights sentences, chosen And being cold, These words create words, and word It is lonely, alone. the feeling of sounds. sadness. Feeling old. Poor is a tired face. Poor is thin. Poor is standing outside Looking in.
  • 11. TONE• It is the attitude a writer takes towards the subject or audience of the poem. “The Crocodile” The subject of the poemHow doth the little crocodile are crocodiles. TheImprove his shining tail, writers attitude towardsAnd pour the water of the Nile crocodiles is that theyOn every golden scale! are dangerous.How cheerfully he seems to grin,How neatly spreads his claws,And welcomes little fishes inWith gently smiling jaws!
  • 12. IMAGERY “There is a Thing” by Jack Prelutsky There is a thing• Language that beneath the stair These are appeals to the 5 image words senses. with slimy face• Are “word and oily hair pictures”. that does not move• Helps the reader to or speak or sing experience familiar things in a fresh or do another way using the single thing senses. but sit and wait beneath the stair with slimy face and oily hair.
  • 13. FIGURES OF SPEECH• A mode of expression in which words are used out of their literal meaning or out of their ordinary use in order to add beauty or emotional intensity or to transfer the poets sense impressions by comparing or identifying one thing with another that has a meaning familiar to the reader.
  • 14. SIMILE• A figure of speech in which two fundamentally unlike things are explicitly compared, usually in a phrase introduced by like or as.• "Good coffee is like friendship: rich and warm and strong." (slogan of Pan-American Coffee Bureau)• "You know life, life is rather like opening a tin of sardines. Were all of us looking for the key." (Alan Bennett, Beyond the Fringe, 1960)• "When Lee Mellon finished the apple he smacked his lips together like a pair of cymbals." (Richard Brautigan, A Confederate General From Big Sur, 1964)
  • 15. METAPHOR• A figure of speech in which an implied comparison is made between two unlike things that actually have something in common. • "Between the lower east side tenements the sky is a snotty handkerchief." (Marge Piercy, "The Butt of Winter") • "The streets were a furnace, the sun an executioner." (Cynthia Ozick, "Rosa")
  • 16. PERSONIFICATION• A figure of speech in which an inanimate object or abstraction is given human qualities or abilities. The wind stood up and gave a shout. He whistled on his fingers and Kicked the withered leaves about And thumped the branches with his hand And said hed kill and kill and kill, And so he will! And so he will! (James Stephens, "The Wind")
  • 17. ONOMATOPOEIA• The use of words that imitate the sounds associated with the objects or actions they refer to. • "Chug, chug, chug. Puff, puff, puff. Ding-dong, ding- dong. The little train rumbled over the tracks." ("Watty Piper" [Arnold Munk], The Little Engine That Could) • "Brrrrrrriiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinng! An alarm clock clanged in the dark and silent room." (Richard Wright, Native Son, 1940) • "Im getting married in the morning! Ding dong! the bells are gonna chime." (Lerner and Loewe, "Get Me to the Church on Time," My Fair Lady)
  • 18. HYPERBOLE• A figure of speech in which exaggeration is used for emphasis or effect; an extravagant statement. • “I had to walk 15 miles to school in the snow, uphill” • “you could have knocked me over with a feather”