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Students tend to find this essay intimidating, but theres no reason it should be. Poems have characters (generally speakers) as we have seen in plays, themes, as weve seen in drama and fiction, settings that can be like those in fiction, and situations or plots that are akin to drama. Of course, poetry is a different form. It allows the writer to narrow the focus more closely than he usually can in fiction or drama and to draw attention to words as the materials of his or her art. Word patterns, sounds and departures from the traditional structures of grammar and capitalization are significant in poetry because they signal both the poets intent to disrupt our conventional way of viewing language and the world and reinvent it. This can also be done through sound. Notice that poetry joins the spoken word to print in a way that neither drama nor fiction does. The links between ideas may be conceptual (Had we but world enough, and time, /This coyness, lady, were no crime.) as in Marvells logic of negation (i.e., we dont own the world or have much time in it, so coyness IS a crime), and the musical principles of poetry such as meter and rhyme join thought with sound and emotion (i.e., Marvell rhymes devour with power39-40 to emphasize the point that the lovers must wrest pleasure from the present before they are destroyed by time). In writing this paper, try to be sensitive to these elements and read the poems closely. You might want to look at sample papers on poetry in Meyer on pages 669, 687,712, and 742. You can also consult Meyers Glossary of Literary Terms beginning on 1651.
Added on 11.05.2016 02:48
The poets speaker or persona is the powerful central consciousness of the poem since the perceptions of the speaker are the ways that the reader is invited to the world and experience. A poet need not use the same persona in every poem; the speaking consciousness may, and perhaps should, vary from poem to poem. Examine the presentation of the speaker in one or more of the love poems of Marlow (974), Marvell (613), Eliot (1039), and Donne (674)

How does Robert Frost view nature? This might seem to be a simple question, but it could be said that Frosts portraits of the man in nature is a great deal different from the pretty postcards hes sometimes dismissed as writing. How do you see this darker view in Frosts mediations on nature?

Frosts Home Burial and Brownings My Last Duchess are both dramatic poems that include developed characters and themes. Browning is usually credited with inventing the form; how does he use it to twist the conventional themes of love poetry in My Last Duchess? How does Frost use dramatic principles to convey the theme of grief in Home Burial? Why does Frost use dramatic form to portray an argument rather than the tragic death of a child? You may write on one or both poems.

How do you view Langston Hughes poetry? He wrote: We younger Negro artists who create now intend to express our individual dark-skinned selves without fear or shame. If white people are pleased, we are glad. If they are not, it doesnt matterIf colored people are pleased we are glad. If they are not, their displeasure doesnt matter either. We build our temples for tomorrow, strong as we know how, and we stand on top of the mountain, free within ourselves (902). Assess the strength of Hughes poetic temples which were constructed from the 1920s to the 1950s; how do they accord with your contemporary ideas of race?
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