Poetry Is a form of literary art in which language is used for its aesthetic and evocative qualities in addition to, or in lieu of, its apparent meaning.

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choosing a synonym of “wind” in my song [closed]

I'm writing words to a song, and I'm hesitating between some synonyms for "wind" (I'm writing the lyrics here, context is me being alone at night in an old remote mansion) : "Late last night lke the ...
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248 views

Is there a term when the final spelling of a word is changed for rhyming purposes?

We see and hear it all the time in commercials, advertisements, poetry, jokes, etc. One classic example is this light and very interesting poem by Ogden Nash, where we can find two instances of this ...
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31 views

What “harbor deception” mean? [closed]

Everyone lies to their neighbor; they flatter with their lips but harbor deception in their hearts harbor means 'a place of refuge', and deception means 'the action of deceiving ...
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89 views

Is it a verse or stanza?

Is "verse" or "stanza" the proper word to refer to some "paragraph" in a poem? For example, in Edgar Allan Poe's The Raven Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary, Over ...
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59 views

Relative stress principle and speech rhythms / free verse

What determines the rhythm of a line in English is stress. the degree of stress of a syllable is determined in relation to the stress of the syllables adjacent to it. This, the relative stress ...
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80 views

Meaning of this short quote/poem [closed]

I watched the movie Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind yesterday, and this quote in the movie forms the theme: How happy is the blameless vestal's lot! The world forgetting, by the world ...
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478 views

Merrily did we drop below the kirk

Here is an excerpt from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Coleridge: The ship was cheered, the harbour cleared, Merrily did we drop Below the kirk, below the hill, Below the ...
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82 views

Can someone explain this quote from 'The Tempest'?

I was reading a Russian translation of Shakespeare's The Tempest, when the queer word choice by the translator made me open the original work to see what the author actually wrote. And here it is: ...
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213 views

What does graphological deviation mean in stylistics analysis?

If I have a poem, that is a sonnet, with an octave and a sestet - can you then say that this gap between them is a graphological deviation?
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132 views

What is the term for the relationship between two words when they have similar but not identical pronunciation? [closed]

What is the term for the relationship between two words when they have similar but not identical pronunciation? For example the words "cheat" and "sheet", "core" and "sour", "think" and "thank", ...
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113 views

“But for all his foolish pranks, he was worshipped in the ranks”

But, for all his foolish pranks, He was worshipped in the ranks The Green Eye of the Little Yellow God As a native English speaker, it was always clear to me that Mad Carew was worshipped ...
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90 views

What's up with G. M. Hopkins's use of accented characters?

Here are a some extracts from G. M. Hopkins I say móre: the just man justices; Keeps grace: thát keeps all his goings graces; Or this And áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim. Or ...
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34 views

Meaning of “while” in a specific context

As a non-native reader I am having a hard time to figure out if the "while" sentence in Wordsworth's poem "The Excursion" in the following section (5th line, "while that poor bird") is merely ...
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52 views

Explain this quote from Lord Byron [closed]

I can relate to what it says, I feel, but I don't quite understand it - does that make sense? Probably not. My first language is not English, so the confusion is great! How would you interpret this ...
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1answer
79 views

A poetic riddle with the answer sophisticated [closed]

I'm working on a gift for my best friend who is leaving the town soon. She loves poetry but I suck at it (big time). And my gift is something similar to the concept of Dash & Lily's book of ...
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86 views

Emily Dickinson poetry [closed]

So I bought this book of Emily Dickinson, and one of her poems which is this one below makes me wonder if it is correct or not. Because in other books the poem is slightly different. This is the poem ...
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1answer
205 views

Rhymes for purple, orange, and silver [closed]

Are there any rhymes for the words purple, orange and silver? One of the apps on my phone says that nothing in the English dictionary rhymes with these words, and I'd like to know if this is really ...
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2answers
212 views

What do you call “rhymes” which are spelt but not sounded the same way?

Here is an example from T. S. Eliot: And even the Abstract Entities Circumambulate her charm; But our lot crawls between dry ribs To keep our metaphysics warm. I expect most people would say ...
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1answer
180 views

Could somebody translate this into modern English? [closed]

This was extracted from Book I of the Iliad by Homer (translated by Samuel Butler): Therefore I say, and swear it with a great oath- nay, by this my sceptre which shalt sprout neither leaf nor ...
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1answer
48 views

Name for the practice of composing sentences for ease and clarity of pronunciation? [closed]

Is there a name for the practice of composing sentences in such a way that they don't contain proximate consonants which cause difficulty when read aloud? For example: Under this criteria, "dogs and ...
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2answers
278 views

What does “bright topaz denizens of a world of green” mean

Here is the extract from a poem "Aunt Jennifer's tigers" by Adrienne Rich- Aunt Jennifer's tigers prance across a screen bright topaz denizens of a world of green. They do not fear the men beneath ...
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379 views

Etymology: “main” meaning sea or ocean

In Kipling's "The Land" he writes: Then did robbers enter Britain from across the Northern main And our Lower River-field was won by Ogier the Dane. Here "main" seems to mean sea, i.e. the ...
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176 views

What do you call an abrupt, abstract ending to a sentence?

While reading the poem Pike by Ted Hughes, I came across this line: The gills kneading quietly, and the pectorals. As you can see, the line ends quite abruptly. How would one term this literary ...
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132 views

How do you refer to a 'they' character in a poem in a possessive sense?

I am writing a paper about Emily Dickinson's ‘They shut me up in Prose –.’ The two characters of the poem are the speaker and an unidentified group only referred to as 'they' and later as 'themself.' ...
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73 views

What's does poetry mean in 'Leave the poetry in what you make'?

I'm reading Jason Fried's book Rework, and I don't understand what poetry means in these sentences: Pare down to the essence, but don't remove the poetry. Leave the poetry in what you make. ...
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487 views

A poetic/literary term for “Ice Age”? [closed]

Is there a poetic/literary term for "Ice Age" (besides "glacial epoch")?
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173 views

Are there any famous English poems that every British-raised or American-raised person knows? [closed]

In the Chinese language, there is a poem named Quiet Night Thoughts(Jing Ye Si) by Li Bai, which is known by everyone that is native to China (from little kids to very old people, even if they are ...
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90 views

What figure(s) of speech or expression are in play here?

I recently heard a somewhat poetic song lyric that I couldn't pin down. The writer says of a failed relationship: We broke a diamond with our bitter words. I get diamond as a metonym for ...
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168 views

Help with older English couplet

I was translating a text, but then the author quoted an old poem by an author named John Ball. I have seen it written in two different forms: "Be war or ye be wo; Knoweth your frend from your foo" ...
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77 views

Through wood and break and many a fertile field: what is “break”?

A poem from A Canterbury Tale (1944): Six hundred years have passed. What would they see, Dan Chaucer and his goodly company? Today the hills and valleys are the same. Gone are the forests ...
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71 views

Prolong the sound of a word in writing

...while maintaining its natural sound? I want to prolong the sound of these words: Doh Rei Mi Fah Sol If I write Doooooh, people might read it as "doooo-oh".
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111 views

Meaning of “barrer” (noun) in W. Henley's poem “'Liza”

I don't understand the meaning in which the count noun word "barrer" is used in William Henley's poem 'Liza (the italics are the author's): ’Liza’s old man’s perhaps a little shady, ’Liza’s old ...
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Deciphering of William Henley's “Bus-Driver”: put 'a bit on'?

This beautiful sonnet, "Bus-Driver" by William Henley, is studded with idioms, some of which are hard to understand. I've bolded one part (of the two) I don't understand: He’s called The General ...
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54 views

What is the correct translation

I am trying to translate Invictus by William Ernest Henley into my language. I was done translating it, but I had a discussion with a fried for the first line. Out of the night that covers me. ...
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2answers
227 views

How can a poem be defined? [closed]

Merriam webster says: A piece of writing that usually has figurative language and that is written in separate lines that often have a repeated rhythm and sometimes rhyme. Googling 'define: poem' ...
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115 views

Correct way of reading The Nibelungenlied

I'm trying to read "The Nibelungenlied" in metrical English translation by George Henry Needler (http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext05/niebn10h.htm). However, I've got certain difficulties with doing ...
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133 views

What is the meaning of the (seemingly) noun word “claw-catch” in a poem?

From "God's Secretary" by R.S. Gwynn: Her e-mail inbox always overflows. Her outbox doesn’t get much use at all. She puts on hold the umpteen-billionth call As music oozes forth to placate ...
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2answers
400 views

What was Princeton 6 in Jamaican English?

I got an Old Raggae album and started listening to "Bam Bam" by Sister Nancy (youtube) After listening several times, I could start making out the English words (lyrics): A me seh one thing Nancy ...
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100 views

What is another word for an weak or unsatisfying (to the viewer) smile?

I'm writing a poem about someone who smiles in a very vague way that leaves something to be desired. I've thought about words like unreadable, empty and vague, but not really "enigmatic". Their smile ...
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193 views

Looking for a word similar to metaphor or symbol or allegory

A person is traveling dangerously fast on a rainy night with low visibility - traveling with reckless abandon in an already dangerous situation. What is the word that describes the literary sense in ...
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88 views

The meaning of “Alexis” in Pope's Second Pastoral

"Alexis" comes from Greek, meaning "to help, defend." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexis_(given_name) Alexander Pope seems to use it in a different sense. His Second Pastoral is entitled Summer ...
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3answers
701 views

How do I use, “Be it” in a question, or can I? [closed]

I'm writing a poem and I want to use this specific wording, but I'm not sure if it's grammatically correct. Here is the line: "Will you ever ask for the truth or be it ignorant you stay?"
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“Made a rhyme without effort” in English from Spanish “Hice verso sin esfuerzo”

In Spanish we can say "Hice verso sin esfuerzo", which means something along the lines of "I made a rhyme without effort", whilst rhyming. What would be an English equivalent of this phrase? I've ...
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2answers
114 views

“Great Divide” synonyms

I am looking for strong, yet poetic expressions/synonyms of "Great Divide" which, beside its other meanings, expresses "a major point of division, especially death." The context I need is the act of ...
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A “Frankenstein's monster” similar metaphors

Although originally it's a novel character, a "Frankenstein's monster" became a metaphor for "something that cannot be controlled and that attacks or destroys the person who invented it." However, are ...
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291 views

Single-word “mirror” synonyms

I was looking for the synonyms of the noun mirror: A surface capable of reflecting sufficient undiffused light to form an image of an object placed in front of it. The majority of the synonyms ...
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206 views

“Tear(drop)” synonyms

I've been looking for the synonyms (especially poetic ones) referring to the nouns "tear" and "tear-drop". Unfortunately, there wasn't much for me to find. I've found two, poetic ones - "brine" and ...
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Using conjunction “while” as an archaic prepositonal form for “until”

In my Penguin English Dictionary, I've encountered the word while marked as an archaic form for the preposition until. Furthermore, according to my online research, Oxford Dictionary states that it is ...
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69 views

“Niveous” poetic synonyms

Are there any more poetic synonyms for "snow-white" and "niveous"? I was searching but I've only found "nival".
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2k views

How to understand these verses from the poem “The road not taken” by Robert Frost

I actually have two questions regarding this poem: The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, ...