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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In what mode does Tom Bombadil sing?

In J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings (book 1 of "The Fellowship of the Ring", chapter 7, "In the House of Tom Bombadil", specifically) the character Tom Bombadil sings many of his lines (much of ...
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60 views

What is “thars” in Dr. Seuss poetry “The Sneetches”?

The Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss: Now, the Star-Belly Sneetches had bellies with stars. The Plain-Belly Sneetches had none upon thars. Those stars weren’t so big. They were really so small. ...
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237 views

What literary device is this? [duplicate]

I have been stumped in characterizing Medbh McGuckian's style of poetry: she often vividly describes the actions of things in her works to imply what they are. For example, within the context of war, ...
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1answer
25 views

What is the difference between a caesura and metrical silence in poetry?

I know both are a pause but I'm not sure if they refer to the same thing. I've been using a German book on poetry to help with my translation project. I've came across Zäsur which I found to be ...
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80 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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50 views

Name for literary device of changing person

Is there a name for the device of changing between third person and second person in a poem? Basically going back and forth from talking about the subject and talking to the subject. This happens a ...
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1answer
44 views

What was the archaic source of “All Turns To Yesterday”?

I was recently reminded of Mediæval Bæbes' performance of "All Turns To Yesterday" (perhaps best known from its adaptation into Delerium's Aria). I've read that it's a rendition of a traditional ...
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36 views

What is “irregular rhyme?”

In my search for the definition for the poetry term "doggerel," which I still do not understand, I came across the term "irregular rhyme." Can someone explain the definition of these terms, and how ...
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1answer
271 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 ...
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166 views

Sun and moon: male or female?

In other languages, the sun and the moon have definite genders: in French and many other romanic languages le soleil (the sun) is male and la lune (the moon) is female. In German and other germanic ...
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117 views

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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1answer
38 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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5answers
4k views

“Poems” or “poetry”

Can poems and poetry be used interchangeably, or is that incorrect usage? In normal conversation, they are used as synonyms often.
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1answer
105 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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2answers
266 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
135 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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4answers
915 views

Meaning of “The most I ever did for you, was to outlive you, / But that is much”

What did the poet mean by the following lines? The most I ever did for you, was to outlive you, But that is much. — Edna St. Vincent Millay I am not able to understand the meaning ...
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1answer
99 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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501 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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1answer
99 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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1answer
356 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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1answer
1k views

Why are identical rhymes inferior in English poetry?

From “War Pigs” by Black Sabbath: Generals gathered in their masses Just like witches at black masses In English poetry, a perfect rhyme has identical vowels but different onsets, like come ...
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299 views

Is this correct: “Aloof the hallow things shall always be”?

I'm writing a poem, and I wondered if, to a native speaker, this would sound awkward (or grammatically incorrect): Aloof the hallow things shall always be. As a variant of The hallow things ...
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5answers
186 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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116 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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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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54 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
133 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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2k views

Parsing the first two lines of “Western Wind”

The 16th century poem "Western Wind" goes as follows: Westron wynde, when wilt thou blow, The small raine down can raine. Cryst, if my love were in my armes And I in my bedde ...
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92 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
478 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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1answer
80 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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What does “noon hour” mean?

I came across the following sentence in a book. I wonder how should I interpret "noon hour": "And how shall you rise beyond your days and nights unless you break the chains which you at the ...
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202 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
50 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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320 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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Difference between meter and rhythm in poetry

What is the difference between meter and rhythm in poetry? The explanations found from googling were highly confusing.
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143 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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1answer
432 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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210 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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80 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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493 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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309 views

What is Poetry? What does not count as Poetry? [closed]

Background: a google "define:poem" did not give me much closure: poem: a piece of writing in which the expression of feelings and ideas is given intensity by particular attention to diction ...
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1answer
189 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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2answers
108 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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4answers
3k views

Why don’t we write poetry like Beowulf any longer?

Beowulf, the Old English epic poem, uses a characteristically Germanic style of poetry in which the number of strong beats per line is what counts. Instead of counting syllables, strong beats alone ...
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170 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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81 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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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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466 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 ...