A direct comparison or identification made between two unlike things (without using “like”)
A term used to refer to a word that megan a metaphor but is now accepted in a literal meaning, as in “baker’s dozen” for “13”
The use in the same expression of two or more metaphors that are inappropriate or illogical.
An obvious and deliberate exaggeration for emphasis, serious, or humorous effects.
“It’s a million degrees in here”
A line or part of a line, or a group of lines which is repeated in the course of a poem in order to emphasize
“Today as never before, the fates of a man are so intimately linked to one another that a disaster for one is a disaster for everybody:”
The repetition of an initial sound (consonant) in two or more words of a phrase. Often used to reinforce meaning or to imitate a sound relevant to what is being described (2 or more words in a row)
“The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew/ The furrow followed free”, “Bighead Burton, Bold, Black, Beautiful”
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A direct or indirect reference to a person, place or event, or to another literary work or passage. There are 4 types of allusions: historical (He met his Waterloo), mythological (to have an Achilles’ heel), literary (Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men) or biblical (a “Daniel come to judgement”)
The expression of an idea in such a way that more than one meaning may be attributed to it. The last two lines of Fern Hill by Dylan Thomas suggests simultaneously the ideas of youth and decay, freedom and subjection to inexorable laws, and enjoyment of nem experiences and decline into death: “Time held me green and dying/ Though I sang in my chains like the sea”
An exclamatory rhetorical figure of speech. Addressing (speaking to) an inanimate object, abstract idea, or person were alive. It also includes addressing an absent person as if present. It is a form of personification. Often introduced by the exclamation “O”
“Where, O death, thy sting?” , “O Moon, thou climb’st the skies”
The repetition of vowel sounds to create internal rhyming within phrases or sentences.
“Do you like blue?” ? the /u/o/ou/ue sound is repeated within the sentence and is assonant. “The cat sat on the hat”
A stylistic device, most commonly used in poetry and songs. Characterized by the repetition of the same constant 2 or more times in short succession.
“Pitter patter. All mammals named Sam are clammy”. “Such weight and thick pink bulk”
Dissonance is the deliberate avoidance of assonance, and, in poetry is similar to cacophony.
“Twas brillig, and the slithy toves/ DId gyre and gimble in the wabe;/ All mimsy were the borogoves,/ And the mome raths outgrabe”
The use of words that imitate sounds. Example: hiss, buzz, crash, bang, sizzle.
A statement that at first appears to be self-contradictory (saying two opposite things), but on further consideration appears to be true.
Attributing (giving) human qualities to animals, inanimate objects, or abstract ideas. Example: “Death lays his icy hands on kings”
A comparison between two unlike things using “like ” or “as” or “than”. Example: “He fought like a lion”
A part of something that is used to represent a whole (I have fifty head of cattle) or the whole represents the part (Canada is playing Russia in the hockey series). A form of Metonymy. Ina sonnet, shakespeare uses the word “rhyme” to refer to the entire poem: “Not marble, nor gilded monuments of princes, shall outlive this powerful rhyme”
Something is deliberately underrated or said to be less than it is implying that the thing described is more than it is allowing the reader to add the significance. It is a form of irony. For example, upon winning a million dollars in a lottery, you say “That’s nice”.
A play on words. 3 Types. 1) a word with two different meanings, 2) the similarity of meanings in two words spelled differently but pronounced the same, 3) two words spelled and pronounced somewhat the same but containing different meanings. “His sins were scarlet, but his books were read”
A combination of two words that appear to contradict each other. Great Depression, pretty ugly, walking dead
The use of words to appeal to the senses (sight, sound, smell, touch, taste). Most imagery is visual: it appeals to the sense of sight, creating a visual image in the reader’s mind. It also refers to the pattern of images in a poem.
The emotional nod created by the entirety of a literary work, established partly by the setting and partly by the author’s choice of objects that are described. Even such elements as a description of the weather can contribute to the atmosphere. Frequently atmosphere foreshadows events. Perhaps it can create a mood.
The attitude or tone which runs through an entire poem: the attitude which the poet takes toward the subject and theme
The poet or speaker’s attitude or POV toward the poem, subject, the reader/audience, or himself or herself. The time namy be any of normal human attitudes – angry, serious, mocking, humorous, etc.
The liberty taken by a poet to produce a desired effect by deviating from the rules of sentence structure, spelling, capitalization, punctuation, rhyme, use of archaic words, etc.
The pattern, structure or organisation of a poem.
A line or group of lines within a poem: another reference for poetry
A form of verse which is written in iambic pentameter and does not rhyme. It is commonly used because it closely resembles the natural rhythms in English speech. Most of Shakespeare’s plays are in blank verse
Free Verse/Open Form
A verse or poem with no regular patterns of rhyme or rhythm. Rhyme is optional and it does not have fixed metrical patterns but rather the natural rhythm of speech. It is “free: from traditional rules of poetry.
A verse or poem with a regular pattern of rhyme and rhythm.
Lines which are grouped or arranged to form a unit within a poem. It form a division in a poem like a paragraph forms division in prose writing.
4-line stanza, known as a quatrain, most often found in the folk ballad. Usually, only the 2nd and the 4th lines rhyme in an abcb pattern. Assonance in place of rhyme is also common.
“The Kings sits in Dunfermline Town,/ Drinking the blood-red wine:/ ‘O where will I get a good sailor/ to sail this ship of mine?”
A pair of lines of verse. It usually consists of 2 lines that rhyme and have the same meter. WHile traditionally couplets rhyme not all do
An elegy is a mournful, melancholic or plaintive poem, especially a funeral song or a lament for the dead
A form of stately and elaborate lyrical verse that expresses personal feeling and often rhymes. It can also be characterised by a tile containing the word, “Ode”
A stanza consisting of 4 lines
A verse form consisting of 8 lines of iambic pentameter. The most common rhyme scheme for an octave is abba abba. An octave is the first part of a Petrarchan sonnet, which ends with a contrasting sestet. In traditional Italian sonnets the octave always ends with conclusion of one idea, giving way to another idea in the sestet
Name given to the 2nd division of an Italian sonnet, which must consist of an octave, of 8 lines, succeeded by a sestet, of 6 siles. A sestet is aos 6 lines of poetry forming a stanza or complete poem
form of poetry that tells a story. In narrative poetry, the emphasis is on plot, external events, and physical action. Ballads and epics are examples of narrative poems.
A simple poem telling a story about a tragic, dramatic event, popular legend, courageous act, or great love. Folk ballads are meant to be sung while literary ballads are meant to be read. Most ballads contain regular rhythm and rhyme patterns and repetition. Often written in quatrains.
A poem written as a speech by a narrator addressing a silent audience. The story is usually revealed by a single character/narrator.
A long narrative poem recounting the deeds of heroic figures from legends or history, or describes some monumental task. It is written in dignified language and elevated style, the epic typically focuses on a hero of national significance, deeds requiring great strength and courage, supernatural forces intervening in the actio, Like the odyssey, the iliad, beowulf
Forms Lyric Poems
Poems that express personal feeling and emotions.
a type of poetry that presents a personal, often intense display of thoughts and emotions These poems typically avoid a narrative structure as found in an epic, where linear or sequential storytelling is the main focus. Lyric is a widely used term and does not just meant the words to a song. Sonnets are examples of lyric poems
A lyric poem of 14 lines usually in iambic pentameter and contains a regular rhyme scheme. It commonly deals with love but also death, nature, and states of mind.
Petrarchan Sonnet (Italian)
Popularized in Italy by Petrarch in the mid 1300’s
Divided into an octave and a sestet.
Octave: abbaabba – Usually represents an idea, story, picture, doubt problem or question
Sestet: cdecde or cdecde or cdcdcd or cdccdc – Usually presents the reflection, conclusion, answer or solution
Shakespearean Sonnet (English)
Popularized in England by William Shakespeare in the 1600’s
Divided into 3 quatrains and a concluding rhyming couplet
abab cdcd efef gg
The last 2 lines often depict a conclusion or summary to the theme developed in the 3 stanzas
A longer lyric poem having serious subject or theme written in dignified language that praises a person, creature , or object.
A poem of sorrow or sober and serious thought. It is often a dignified poem expressing sorrow (and sometimes praise) about the death of a person.
A traditional form of Japanese poetry consisting of 3 lines and 17 syllables (5-7-5). It usually presents snapshot like images of nature or everyday life, and reveal the emotions of the speaker or a brief condensed philosophical view of life.
A form of Japanese poetry similar to haiku consisting of 5 lines and 31 syllables (5-7-5-7-7)
It’s primary purpose is to teach a lesson or moral or make some critical statement about something in society. Didactic oems may make a comment on society, explain an event or topic, or make critical comments. Didactic poems can take the form of a narrative or lyric; sometimes a lesson can be taught by telling a story or by expressing feelings and thoughts about something.
a form of poetry in which the physical arrangement of the letters, words, and lines of poetry helps to convey the meaning of the poem.
basic rhythmic structure of a verse.
4 line stanza, with 2 pairs of a line of iambic tetrameter followed by a line of iambic trimeter; the rhymes usually fall on the lines of the trimester, although in many instances the tetrameter also rhymes
The rhythm is measured in small groups of syllables; these small groups of syllables are called “feet”. The word “iambic” describes the type of foot that is used. The word “pentameter” indicates that a line has 5 of these “feet”.
an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable da DUM da DUM (like a heart or horse)