What Is Poem Made Of?
i made this post because i discovered that a whole lot of those who comment on my poems don't actually understand what poem is all about.
some even read the poems like prose or some kind of storybook. The last poem i posted attracted lots of unspeakable comments merely because of the word 'my heart is a graveyard' it shows that some of you don't actually read and understand the poems so i have made this post to help you understand what poems are made of and to also help those who would want to learn how to write poemsImagery Imagery is what occurs when poets use words that appeal to our senses: we perceive, through his or her words, a sense idea or image: these images can appeal to all six senses: sight, hearing, touch, smell, taste, and balance. Imagery is important in a poem because it is language that allows us to be transported to place, time, and experience, which, if the image is effective, allows us to understand the emotion being conveyed in the poem. Imagery allows the poet to show us and keeps him or her from simply telling us. We can only know the world through the senses; we must perceive first and reason second. Imagery is critical to understanding. Imagism refers to the idea that an image, presented on its own, in a poem, has the power to unite the poet and the reader/listener in the exact impulse or experience that led the poet to write the poem in the first place. Diction Diction is primarily the poet’s choice of words. Since poetry, of all literary forms, uses the least number of words to accomplish its task, each word is important and must be chosen as the exact word. Also, unnecessary words should be eliminated so they don’t obscure the essential language of the poem. How does a poet choose the exact word? Three reasons make sense:
- sound: how does the word sound? Does the sound contribute to the meaning, to the overall sound scheme, or does it interrupt or interfere? Choose words for sound based on the following
- alliteration: repetition of beginning sounds: Susan sent sally some sunflowers, loons lurk late in autumn lakes under lavender skies
- assonance: repetition of vowel sounds: cake, stake, break, fate, drank, ache, placate, etc. Some words using assonance will rime exactly: others will simply mirror the vowel sounds
- consonance: repetition of consonant sounds: exact rimes use consonance: foot, put, soot. But any words that repeat consonant sounds are using consonance: add suit, unfit, and unlit to the preceding list. The key is that they all end with the “t” sound. Consonance can occur in the middle of words also: river, liver, cadaver, palaver, waver, save, rave, etc. The “v” sound repeats.
- denotation: what is the exact meaning of the word? This is the definition you will find in the dictionary.
- connotation: what meanings does this word suggest beyond it’s exact meaning? What is the emotive quality of this word? For example, the word “cancer” means a disease characterized by the abnormal growth of cells. Emotionally, “cancer” conjures up fear, even terror for some, worry, helplessness, etc. Words often have such connotative connections and we need to be aware of them and use them.
- Rime: words that sound either exactly alike or merely similar
- exact rime:
- cat, hat, flat, mat: masculine rime (one syllable rimes)
- falling, calling, stalling: feminine rime (two or more syllables rime)
- slant rime/approximate rime: the words sound close but are not exact rimes:
- mirror, steer, dear or book, crack, stick (consonance is used most often for slant rimes).
- internal rime vs. end rime: end rime occurs only at the end of the line whereas internal rime happens within the lines
- Meter: a rhythm accomplished by using a certain number of beats or syllables per line: the most common form of meter is Iambic meter which is a foot consisting of one unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable represented like this: ( U / ). A foot is simply two syllables (or in some cases, three) that form a metrical pattern. Iambs are common in everyday English. Iambic Pentameter means a five foot Iambic line, or ten syllables.
- direct metaphor: the comparison is made directly using the word “is.” Life is a river.
- indirect metaphor: “The river of life” also compares life to a river but does so indirectly.
- personification: giving something non-human, human characteristics
- oxymoron: juxtaposing two things apparently contradictory that still reinforce one idea—jumbo shrimp, military intelligence
- hyperbole: use exaggeration to extend reality: hyperbole gets us to look more closely at what is actually true
- understatement: this works in the opposite way from hyperbole
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