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Elements of Poetry: Structure and Forms

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Presentation on theme: "Elements of Poetry: Structure and Forms"— Presentation transcript:

1 Elements of Poetry: Structure and Forms

2 Let’s start with some basics…
po·et·ry (n) writing chosen and arranged to create a certain emotional response through meaning, sound, and rhythm prose (n) everything else! ordinary language that people use when they speak or write

3 Lines May be short or long.
Are NOT necessarily complete sentences or even complete thoughts! The arrangement of lines, spacing, and whether or not the lines rhyme in some manner, can define the FORM of a poem.

4 Stanza A group of lines whose rhyme scheme is usually followed throughout the poem. A division in poetry like a paragraph in prose. Common stanza patterns include couplets, triplets, quatrains, etc. Free-verse poems follow no rules regarding where to divide stanzas.

5 And now several forms of poetry…

6 Couplet Two lines that rhyme.
A complete idea is usually expressed in a couplet, or in a long poem made up of many couplets. Couplets may be humorous or serious.

7 Couplet continued… Example:
But if the while I think on thee, dear friend, All losses are restored and sorrows end. Shakespeare Chocolate candy is sweet and yummy It goes down smoothly in my tummy! Unknown

8 Couplet continued… Twinkle, twinkle little star,
How I wonder what you are, Up above the world so high, Like a diamond in the sky.

9 Narrative Poems Tell a story. It is a story told in verse, by a speaker or narrator. There is a plot … something happens; because of this, something else happens. Can be true or fictional. Poems vary in treatment of character and setting. Forms of narrative poetry include: ballad epic

10 Narrative Poems: Ballad
A narrative, rhyming poem or song. Characterized by short stanzas and simple words, usually telling a heroic and/or tragic story (although some are humorous). Can be long. Usually rich with imagery (emotionally charged visual images). Originated from folk songs that told exciting or dramatic stories.

11 Ballad continued… Example from John Henry, a traditional American ballad in ten stanzas. When John Henry was a tiny little baby Sitting on his mama’s knee, He picked up a hammer and a little piece of steel Saying, “Hammer’s going to be the death of me, Lord, Lord, Hammer’s going to be the death of me.” John Henry was a man just six feet high. Nearly two feet and a half across his chest. He’d hammer with a nine-pound hammer all day And never get tired and want to rest. Lord, Lord, And never get tired and want to rest.

12 Ballad continued… Example from The Unquiet Grave. (an old ballad that would have been sung to an eerily catchy tune) The wind doth blow today, my love, And a few small drops of rain. I never had but one true-love, In cold grave she was lain. I’ll do as much for my true-love As any young man may. I’ll sit and mourn all at her grave For a twelvemonth and a day.

13 Narrative Poems: Epic Very long narrative (story) poem that tells of the adventures of a hero. Purpose is to help the reader understand the past and be inspired to choose good over evil. Usually focuses on the heroism of one person who is a symbol of strength, virtue, and courage in the face of conflict.

14 Narrative Poems: Epic continued
Some are VERY long – for example, The Odyssey by Homer, (written as 12 books) has over 6,213 lines in the first half alone!

15 Lyric Poetry Always expresses some emotion.
Poems are shorter than epic poems. Tend to express the personal feelings of one speaker (often the poet). Give you a feeling that they could be sung.

16 Lyric Poetry continued…
Originally Greek poets sang or recited poems accompanied by music played on a lyre (a stringed instrument like a small harp). In the Renaissance, poems were accompanied by a lute (like a guitar).

17 Lyric Poetry: Sonnet Most sonnets are in a fixed form of 14 lines of 10 syllables, usually written in iambic pentameter. The theme of the poem is summed up in the last two lines. Can be about any subject, but usually are about love and/or philosophy.

18 Lyric Poetry: Sonnet continued…
Example from Sonnet 18 by Shakespeare: Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate: Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer's lease hath all too short a date: Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, And often is his gold complexion dimm'd; And every fair from fair sometime declines, By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd; But thy eternal summer shall not fade Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest; Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade, When in eternal lines to time thou growest: So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, So long lives this and this gives life to thee.

19 Lyric Poetry: Ode A tribute to someone or something.
Often uses exalted language in praise or celebration. Can be serious or humorous.

20 Lyric Poetry: Ode continued…
Example from Ode to Pablo's Tennis Shoes by Gary Soto They wait under Pablo's bed, Rain-beaten, sun-beaten, A scuff of green At their tips From when he fell  In the school yard. He fell leaping for a football That sailed his way. But Pablo fell and got up, Green on his shoes, With the football Out of reach. Now it's night. Pablo is in bed listening To his mother laughing to the Mexican novelas on TV. His shoes, twin pets That snuggle his toes, Are under the bed.

21 Elegy to express grief or mourning for someone who has died
somber, serious, ending on a peaceful note

22 Elegy example… Elegy for Anne Frank You blossomed and grew
by Jessica Smith You blossomed and grew between the quiet gray walls of your attic home. A sidewalk-surrounded flower pushed up through the cracks, petals straining for the light, but your roots held you down. In the dim light of your room you made family trees, the continuing lives comforting you in ways your mother could not. While concentration camps built bonfires with the bones of your neighbors, you dreamed of the sun and the love you’d find when the doors of your prison were unlocked. When I took your short life from your diary, I could feel your heartbeat pulse with my own, and every breath you took went into my own lungs, every desire you felt, I felt, too. Your life was held by four silent years, surrounding you as the four walls did. And before the last bomb fell, destroying the last of your love and light, you died. And I am thankful. Elegy example…

23 Limerick A FUNNY 5-line poem, written with one couplet (two lines of poetry that rhyme) and one triplet (three lines of poetry that rhyme). Always follows the same pattern. The rhyme scheme (pattern) is – a a b b a. The last line contains the “punchline” or “heart of the joke”. Often contain hyperbole, onomatopoeia, idioms, and other figurative language.

24 Limerick continued… You will soon hear the distinctive beat pattern of all limericks. eg: “A fly and a flea in a flue Were caught, so what could they do? Said the fly, “Let us flee.” “Let us fly,” said the flea. So they flew through a flaw in the flue.” alliteration! Can you identify the rhyme pattern?

25 By Edward Lear, who made limericks very popular.
Limerick continued… By Edward Lear, who made limericks very popular.

26 Limerick continued… eg. Before we even said grace
He sat and filled up his face He gorged on salami Ate all the pastrami Then exploded with nary a trace. There was a large bear in a tree Who was in pursuit of a bee The bee was no dummy He gave the bear money So the bear let the honeybee free.

27 Free Verse Is just that – free!
Lines of poetry written without rules; no regular beat or rhyme. Unrhymed poetry. eg. Autumn Thought by Langston Hughes; Flowers are happy in summer. In autumn they die and are blown away. Dry and withered, Their petals dance on the wind Like little brown butterflies.

28 Haiku A Japanese form of poetry; one line of five syllables; one line of seven syllables; and a final line of five syllables. Fragments (not usually complete sentences) About everyday things; written in the present tense. Much is left unsaid.

29 Haiku continued… Examples: Little sparrow child
plays in the road. “Oh, watch out! Watch out! Horse tramps by!” Soft, summer twilight, suddenly a sound; Frog leaps in the old pond – Splash! imagery! onomatopoeia!

30 Cinquain A Cinquain is a poem that resembles a diamond.
It has 5 lines and begins with one word. The 2nd line has two adjectives that describe that word. The 3rd , three verbs. The 4th line is a phrase that goes deeper into the topic. The 5th line gives either a synonym for the first word, or a word that encompasses the whole poem.

31 Loving, playing, Laughing
Cinquain examples… Sister Smart, Outgoing Loving, playing, Laughing Always in for some fun Friend “Tucson Rain” The smell Everyone moves To the window to look Work stops and people start talking Rain came

32 and a few other interesting poetry forms…

33 List Poem One of the oldest forms of poetry a.k.a Catalog Poem
Polynesians used list poems to form an inventory of all of their islands! a.k.a Catalog Poem Can be long or short, rhymed or unrhymed

34 List Poem continued… Example: Things a Pigeon Knows
What does a pigeon know? Who throws cracker crumbs the Eaves and ledges, thickest, Rafter edges, How thin cats are often Gutter streams, quickest. Steel beams, Tennis courts. Trees in parks. Cars and busses, The highest steeple. A bridge, with its delightful Swarms trusses, of people. Sidewalks, Culverts, Popcorn vendors, - Patricia Hubbell Taxis and their yellow fenders.

35 Concrete Poetry Poetry in which authors use both words and physical shape to convey a message. Poetry in which authors use both words and physical shape to convey a message.

36 Another Concrete Poem

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