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One Art by Elizabeth Bishop
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One Art by Elizabeth Bishop

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  • 1. One Art The art of losing isn't hard to master; so many things seem filled with the intent to be lost that their loss is no disaster. Lose something every day. Accept the fluster of lost door keys, the hour badly spent. The art of losing isn't hard to master. Then practice losing farther, losing faster: places, and names, and where it was you meant to travel. None of these will bring disaster. I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or next-to-last, of three loved houses went. The art of losing isn't hard to master. I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster, some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent. I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster. ---Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident the art of losing's not too hard to master though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster. --Elizabeth Bishop
  • 2. Ms. Peterson: Summer School English 2013 “One Art” by Elizabeth Bishop Reading Comprehension and Discussion Questions Directions:  After reading “One Art”, answer each of the following questions to the best of your ability.  Be sure to use complete sentences and examples from the text to support your answers for full credit.  Answer the questions in your notebook and leave space to add notes based on our discussion. 1. Make a list of all of the things the speaker loses in the poem. 2. What is Bishop trying to say about the material, or tangible, possessions? 3. Explain the meaning of the second stanza. What is Bishop saying here? 4. Describe the tone of the poem. Provide examples. 5. What is the overall theme of the poem? Explain. 6. What words and phrases does Bishop repeat in this poem? How does this repetition contribute to the theme and message of her poem? Explain.