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Cracking the AP Poetry Prompt

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1 Cracking the AP Poetry Prompt
3 Free-Response essays: 2 hours One of them is the Poetry Prompt. Let’s take a gander at the sample question from 2012’s AP Poetry… If you have a difficult relationship with poetry, I understand. But, let’s get over it. Come to a poem with a loving heart and open mind. A poet write a poem to try to convey the deepest and most complex aspects of the human experience. KNOW that! There’s a human behind it, trying to connect in a deep way. Be patient, stay open. Kno’ what I’m saying?

2 The Prompt In the following poem by Sir Philip Sidney
( ), the speaker addresses the subject of desire. Read the poem carefully. Then write a well- developed essay in which you analyze how poetic devices help to convey the speaker’s complex attitude toward desire. Prompt Clues: Sidney--Renaissance Renaissance; English Counter Reformation; Mary Elizabeth I Which poetic devices? Complex=more than one

3 Two Rhetorical Parts of an Argument
Sonnet Traits Review Sonnets = lyrics---they convey intense emotion 14 lines; iambic pentameter; two rhetorical parts Italian/Petrarchan Octave (volta) Sestet abba abba cdcdcd or cdecde English/Shakespearean 3 Quatrains (volta) Couplet abab cdcd efef gg Spenserian 3 Quatrains (volta) Couplet abab bcbc cdcd ee Sidney 2 Quatrains (volta) 2 Tercets* (Quatorzain) abab baba bcc bcc *(always ending in a couplet) Volta (turn) = main shift in all sonnets Two Rhetorical Parts of an Argument Question—Answer Problem—Solution Don’t just label; analyze how the rhyme scheme develops meaning Use the rhyme scheme to analyze the argument From the French quatorze (fourteen), a quatorzain is a poem similar to the sonnet. It consists of 14 rhymed iambic lines divided into two tercets (a group of three lines of verse) and two quatrains (a group of four lines of verse), and always ending in a couplet (unlike sonnets, which do not always do so). Technically, most of the Elizabethan sonnet sequences were truly composed of quatorzains, not sonnets, but few 16th-century poets made the distinction (an exception being Michael Drayton). Some critics also believe that Sir Philip Sidney employed the form deliberately in his collection Certain Sonnets, which contains a miscellany of forms. Later poets, such as John Donne, clarified the two forms.

4 “Thou Blind Man’s Mark”: Quatorzain Rhyme Scheme
Thou snare, a Fond thought; b Band care; a Thou wrought; b Desire. . . bought, b With ware; a Too brought, b Who prepare a But sought; b In aspire; c In fire; c For taught— b Within hire, c Desiring desire. c

5 WhatYou Need to Look For…
Who is the speaker? Who is addressed? What is the situation? Poetic devices? What are the attitudes? How do you know? Poetic Terminology Complexity: (more than one) of Attitude toward desire Irony: Title--What is a blind man’s mark (target)? Final couplet Classical Allusion: Cupid (blind man) Structure: sonnet; shift; recognize problem/solution argument; irony of final couplet Figurative Language: alliteration, apostrophe, personification, metaphors Imagery: Not just visual Rhetorical Devices: repetition, parallelism, anaphora (repetition of initial words, phrases), puns, paradoxes/opposites, chiasmus, catalog, juxtaposition, asyndeton Syntactical: anastrophe (inversion); length of line Point of View: 1st; 2nd person familiar (thou, thee, thy, thine) Analysis: Use poetry terminology and textural support; show HOW you know Frank’s question to TL’s This was year of no list; Here’s a list Asyndeton “We came, we saw, we conquered. . .” Anaphora Repetition at the beginning of phrases Modern English has dropped a set of pronouns and verbs called the "familiar" or "thee and thou" forms once used among close friends and family and to children, inferiors, animals, and inanimate objects. These old forms did, though, survive into Elizabethan England and appear frequently in Shakespeare. Imperatives are in 2nd person; commands; accusatory

6 Poetry Analysis Cheat Sheet
LEAD (Diction Analysis) L=Low or Informal (dialect, slang, jargon) E=Elevated or Formal A=Abstract or Concrete D=Denotation or Connotation Monosyllabic Polysyllabic Colloquial (Slang) Informal (Conversational) Formal (Literary) Old-Fashioned/Antiquated Euphonious Cacophonous (Any new words? Look them up!) Perrine’s Question Who is the speaker? Who is addressed? What is the situation? What is the tone? Are there any shifts? Other Poetry Elements form (e.g., sonnet, sestina) figurative language: figures of speech figures of sound rhyme scheme meter rhetoric syntax symbols details Imagery: visual tactile gustatory auditory olfactory organic kinetic kinesthetic ***HOW does the language convey the COMPLEX TONE, MEANING, AND THEME?****_________________________ TONE HOT Tone words convey emotion COMPLEX = MORE THAN ONE (+ ) (-) IRONY HUMOR________________ TP-CASTT DIDLS T=title D=Diction P=paraphrase I=Imagery C=connotation D=Details A=attitude L=Language S=shifts S=Sentence Structure T=title T=theme

7 “Thou Blind Man’s Mark”
Thou blind man’s mark,1 thou fool’s self-chosen snare, Fond fancy’s scum, and dregs of scattered thought; Band of all evils, cradle of causeless care; Thou web of will, whose end is never wrought; Desire, desire! I have too dearly bought, With price of mangled mind, thy worthless ware; Too long, too long, asleep thou hast me brought, Who should my mind to higher things prepare. But yet in vain thou hast my ruin sought; In vain thou madest me to vain things aspire; In vain thou kindlest all thy smoky fire; For virtue hath this better lesson taught— Within myself to seek my only hire,2 Desiring naught but how to kill desire. 1target 2reward Robert Reads Walk through the poem; paraphrase; point out observations Octave vs Sestet overall differences. Octave= critical of desire and its powerful yet destructive abilities; Condesceding “Thou” ; 2nd person; catalog of metaphors; problem of desire; more alliteration; emphasize the imagery, despising tone; vices of desire listed Repetition of Vain (in vain-hopeless) and vain—(proud vanity); Sestet—what desire attempted to do to the speaker, yet unsuccessful Sestet temptations of desire thwarted, defeated; deceptiveness of image thou kindlest all thy smoky fire; The absolute solution lies within the speaker; emphasized by ending couplet; the lessons of virtue taught speaker to seek his own reward and focus, desire the ultimate destruction: to destroy desire

8 Beginning Analysis: Diction, Imagery, Language
Circle tone words (nouns, adjectives, adverbs) Bracket imagery Box figurative language Underline other observations (e.g., repetition, alliteration, parallelism, point of view) Categorize—What are the effects? How do students begin to analyze poetry; Sonnets are a great beginning because of the conventions Annotation and planning—this is the first year we can see what used to be the green booklets.

9 Poetry Analysis: Diction
Thou blind man’s mark, thou fool’s self-chosen snare, A Fond fancy’s scum, and dregs of scattered thought; B Band of all evils, cradle of causeless care; A Thou web of will, whose end is never wrought; B Desire, desire! I have too dearly bought, B With price of mangled mind, thy worthless ware; A Too long, too long, asleep thou hast me brought, B Who should my mind to higher things prepare. A But yet in vain thou hast my ruin sought; B In vain thou madest me to vain things aspire; C In vain thou kindlest all thy smoky fire; C For virtue hath this better lesson taught— B Within myself to seek my only hire, C Desiring naught but how to kill desire. C

10 Imagery and Alliteration
Thou blind man’s mark,1 thou fool’s self-chosen snare, Fond fancy’s scum, and dregs of scattered thought; Band of all evils, cradle of causeless care; Thou web of will, whose end is never wrought; Desire, desire! I have too dearly bought, With price of mangled mind, thy worthless ware; Too long, too long, asleep thou hast me brought, Who should my mind to higher things prepare. But yet in vain thou hast my ruin sought; In vain thou madest me to vain things aspire; In vain thou kindlest all thy smoky fire; For virtue hath this better lesson taught— Within myself to seek my only hire,2 Desiring naught but how to kill desire. 1target 2reward

11 “Thou Blind Man’s Mark”: Metaphors and Anastrophe Thou = Desire
Thou blind man’s mark,1 thou fool’s self-chosen snare, Fond fancy’s scum, and dregs of scattered thought; Band of all evils, cradle of causeless care; Thou web of will, whose end is never wrought; Desire, desire! I have too dearly bought, With price of mangled mind, thy worthless ware; Too long, too long, asleep thou hast me brought, Who should my mind to higher things prepare. But yet in vain thou hast my ruin sought; In vain thou madest me to vain things aspire; In vain thou kindlest all thy smoky fire; For virtue hath this better lesson taught— Within myself to seek my only hire,2 Desiring naught but how to kill desire. 1target 2reward Inversion = anastrophe Scum floats at the top; dregs—sediment that drifts to the bottom; dregs of society; last bit of wine Not just the scattered thoughts, but the dregs—the worst—of those scattered thoughts Metaphors often used to characterize or personify desire Anastrophe stresses the object over the subject; the effect emphasized—End of octave

12 “Thou Blind Man’s Mark”: Repetition and Parallelism
Thou blind man’s mark,1 thou fool’s self-chosen snare, Fond fancy’s scum, and dregs of scattered thought; Band of all evils, cradle of causeless care; Thou web of will, whose end is never wrought; Desire, desire! I have too dearly bought, With price of mangled mind, thy worthless ware; Too long, too long, asleep thou hast me brought, Who should my mind to higher things prepare. But yet in vain thou hast my ruin sought; In vain thou madest me to vain things aspire; In vain thou kindlest all thy smoky fire; For virtue hath this better lesson taught— Within myself to seek my only hire,2 Desiring naught but how to kill desire. 1target 2reward Inversion = anastrophe Scum floats at the top; dregs—sediment that drifts to the bottom; dregs of society; last bit of wine Not just the scattered thoughts, but the dregs—the worst—of those scattered thoughts Metaphors often used to characterize or personify desire Irony of last three lines: Chiasmus Repetition of ideas in inverted order Repetition of grammatical structures in inverted order Virtue taught the lesson; w/I myself is my only reward; desire nothing—but how to kill desire Anastrophe stresses the object over the subject; the effect emphasized—End of octave; desire brings worthless wares, items; causes speaker to value worthless wares--as one asleep; muddles thought—TONE; attitude of speaker toward desire and its treatment of him Sestet: Repetition and parallelism emphasize defeated, thwarted desire “in vain”=unsuccessful; “vain things”=vanity; silly, foolish, irrelevant; ability of the speaker to triumph; Ironic twist—did the speaker triumph in the last line—desire required to kill desire; desiring naught=pun—desire nothing; continue the line; desire needed.

13 Evidence for the Best Argument
Which language elements reveal meaning the best? Analyze and explicate; don’t merely list observations Jane Schaeffer’s Chunk Ratio: Chunk = 1 CD: 2-3 CM’s (CD = Concrete Detail CM = Commentary) Use 2-3 chunks per paragraph.

14 Show How You Know Author uses x to reveal y, implying z.
x = language element (quote it) y = effect, meaning, tone z = theme, thoughtful inference Sidney uses the repetition of the words “ in vain” in the sestet to emphasize the malicious yet unsuccessful attempts of desire to deceive and mislead the speaker. “Vain,” also used as an adjective in the line “to vain things aspire” to pun upon connotation of vain meaning excessive pride or vanity. This implies the speakers knows he is susceptible to desire’s temptations, but knowing this does not make the resisting less difficult.

15 Activity In small groups, read the following sample essays and attempt to score them using the rubric given to you (1-9). Make a note of what these students did well…

16 THINGS TO COME -Beowulf Projects or Essays Due 10/6
-*****Chapters 10-16: Wednesday, 10/8 This has been changed!!! -Read and annotate “Words” from Francine Prose’s Reading Like a Writer for Monday, 10/6 -AP Style Poetry Essay (In-Class: 75 Points): Friday, 10/10


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