Questions tagged [poetry]

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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102 views

iambic pentameter, stress, and monosyllables

I am studying poetry structure and I am focusing on iambic pentameter at the moment. From what I have read, there are 10 syllables per line and 5 stressed and 5 unstressed syllables. It goes ...
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“Hook it home” meaning

I stumbled upon the idiom "hooking it home" in some of Bukowski's lines. Namely, the whores are there for young boys and old men; to the young boys they say, "don't be frightened, ...
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Help with some Bukowski syntax [closed]

I'm working to translate some Bukowski and got confused with the syntax of "Advice For Some Young Man In The Year 2064" (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/751678994049154743/) to the point that ...
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Is there any literary name attributed to 12 verse length stanza?

Not a 12 line poem, but a 12 verse stanza.
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Where would the question marks fall within this poem?

Can someone help me punctuate this line? It is poetry, which may not always follow the common rules of punctuation... I asked myself is there such a place in the deepest part of the soul where noone ...
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A meaning without suitable words

I wanted to add a poem to my book but I can't manage to convey my meaning in the right words. The first sentence was about bells that indicate _____. That was where my sentence end. The meaning that I ...
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What is the rhythm of the following poem?

When we grab you by the ankles, Where our mark is to be made, You'll soon be doing noble work, Although you won't be paid. When we drive away in secret, You'll be a volunteer, So don't scream when we ...
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Iambic Tetrameter - does it pertain to poems? Or to lines?

I'm reading a poem in which the odd lines use iambic tetrameter but the even lines have only seven syllables. Each verse has four lines of 8,7,8,7. Something like this: De dum, de dum, de dum, de dum, ...
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What is it called when a poetry stanza alternates between iambic tetrameter and triameter?

What is it called when a poetry stanza alternates between iambic tetrameter and triameter? If I shall wander into hell And die upon its coals So we have one line of iambic tetrameter and one line ...
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32 views

Meaning of these verses from a poem by Keats [closed]

What does these words mean : And in the midst of this wide quietness A rosy sanctuary will I dress With the wreath’d trellis of a working brain, I'm not a literature student, these verses were ...
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59 views

What's the meaning of “steal” in There Is A Pleasure In The Pathless Woods? [closed]

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods, There is a rapture on the lonely shore, There is society, where none intrudes, By the deep sea, and music in its roar: I love not man the less, but Nature ...
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116 views

What is the figure of speech used in these lines? [closed]

Jacob's Ladder Hearken! Trim that swagger a trifle, you wretched lump of earth! Stamp those feet neither, nor act so haughty Hearken! You are but a tiny figure on the grand scroll A statistic, a ...
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What is a word for when you understand and comprehend something but cannot do it?

Emily Dickinson understands all the concepts of poetry but cannot write all her thoughts.
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What is the meaning of “right back over my hill” in a poetic context?

Before he was gone - right back over my hill Who now will find him? Why, nobody will Doom shall I bring to him, I that am queen Lost forever, nine by nineteen. What is the meaning of right back over ...
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What is the name of the poetic device where the author creates neologisms/malaprops to complete the rhyme?

I just learned about slant rhyming where you use a distorted not quite rhyme. Emily Dickinson is noted or these. (I personally don't like these, as they distract. Much like trying to make a pun on ...
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What did Lord Byron mean by “Away with this cant about nature!”?

In Oscar Wilde's A Sentimental Journey Through Literature, he suggests that the literary critic 'Mr Noel' thought Lord Byron was a "true nature worshipper and Pantheist". Wilde provides ...
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Rhetorical device for sentence structure imitating meaning

I am trying to find the specific rhetorical device which means that the structure of the sentence I’m writing about imitates the meaning. In this particular case the writer using enjambement to convey ...
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In “Brown Man's Burden” is the antecedent changing?

I was reading the "The Brown Man's Burden" by Henry Labouchère. I was a little confused because the antecedent for "you," seemed to be changing from the White men to the Brown men (...
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How is this couplet to be interpreted grammatically?

What follows are two couplets from the final stanza of the poem 'And thou art dead as young and fair' by Lord Byron. I wish to ask how the word 'thus' is being used here. Yet how much less it were to ...
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64 views

What does “klioklio” mean? [closed]

I'm reading Malcolm Lowry's letters and his second letter to Conrad Aiken finishes like this: Klioklio, C. M. Lowry Does anyone know what "klioklio" mean? Thanks in advance!
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What does “te-thrum” mean?

I'm reading Malcolm Lowry's letters and his first letter to Conrad Aiken finishes like this: te-thrum te-thrum te-thrum te-thrum, Malcolm Lowry Does anyone know what "te-thrum" mean in this ...
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107 views

Did the accent in “without” shift from the first syllable to the second in the past?

To be sure, the line from William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, written in 1591, reads: There is no world with-OUT Verona walls. However, a passage in John Milton's Paradise Lost, written in 1667, ...
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Is the Christmas carol “We Three Kings” intentionally ungrammatical for artistic reasons, or does it use archaic grammar?

I was listening to the “We Three Kings” Christmas carol, and I ended up taking note of the syntax. Given the use of the thou/thy/thee/thine pronouns for the second-person singular and the vocative ...
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“conquer by flood and by field”

While reading an English poem from Robert M. M'Cheyne (1813–1843), Jehovah Tsidkenu (= Jehovah our Righteousness) there is one stanza that reads Jehovah Tsidkenu! my treasure and boast, Jehovah ...
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Name of this lyrical device comparing oneself to something that's described by the same word, but in another sense of the word?

Warning: The examples contain some offensive words, but I believe that is not against the rules here? Lately I've been listening a lot to a certain hip-hop album, in which almost every track uses a ...
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What is a person called if they study poems but do not write them?

I am doing a research paper for Robert Frost and Emily Dickinson. I do not know the term to use if I'm trying to talk about someone who studied the poems they made before they died. Can anyone help me ...
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Who said “What ails the wee bairn”?

In college, a literature professor related that a poet from the British Isles, as a young child, uttered the words (as best as I can remember) "What ails the wee bairn?" upon hearing an ...
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What does “this” mean in this sentence? [closed]

English poet Robert Browning in his poem "Paracelsus" has written: "Nay, autumn wins you best by this its mute appeal to sympathy for its decay" [AllPoetry] Why is "its"...
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Is the archaic meaning of “exact” different from how we use it today?

In the poem On his blindness by John Milton, we find these lines “Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?” Keeping in mind the lines above and lines below the quoted line, the quoted might mean ...
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“As on”…is it correctly used below

Can one say “as on” in the following lines: Drops of rain gather As on a burning forehead. Is there a better alternative? Thanks
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Creative writing in intentionally archaic language: parallelism in abnormal contractions

I hope this is on topic here. I am revising an original poem. No, I am not posting it or asking for a critique. I am intentionally using old-fashioned language. I would like to know if the concept of ...
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640 views

Poetic technique for taking a usually comforting thing in a scary context?

Poetic technique for taking a usually comforting thing in a scary context? Context: I was wondering what the name of the poetic technique was, where one takes something which is usually light, ...
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What is the difference between 'transferred epithet' and 'metaphor'?

In the poem 'My Mother at Sixty-six' by Kamala Das (which I have attached below), what is the poetic device in the line 'the merry children spilling out of their homes'? I feel like it should be ...
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232 views

Sugar teeth meaning

I was reading a poem in which the following expression is contained: "I'd be sugar teeth". I tried to look for the right translation of this, but I couldn't find anything. I only saw on Urban ...
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787 views

Can one write poems that follows a rhyme scheme but no metre?

As a non-English speaker, I wonder if one can write English poems that follow a rhyme scheme but no metre? If so, what is this form called? And can you kindly point out notable poets that practised ...
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Is there any single word to name the people who are in an exodus?

We know about the situation called - exodus. But is there any single word to name the people who are in that exodus? I mean, is there any single word to describe people who are leaving a place in mass ...
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Are there examples in poetry of previously being contracted to prev'ously?

I'm curious if there are any examples in poetry of the word previously being contracted to three syllables, by contracting it to prev'ously, or some variant spelling. It would seem that we are keeping ...
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Iambic Pentameter

I'm having some confusion with this rhythm. It's really hard for me to tell if a syllable is stressed or unstressed, accented or unaccented. I know what they are, but it's hard to do this in practice.
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How to interpret these verses?

Denmark: For Shakespeare’s Prince, and the Princess of Wales, To England dear. Her royal spirit quails; From skating faint, she rests upon the snow; Shrinking from unclean beasts ...
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Can the word “greening” be used in the sense of “being green” or “turning green”?

As far as I know, poetry can and often does break some limits of sentence and word structure if it is required by its rhythm or rhyme. I am translating one, and the perfect ending of a line would be ...
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265 views

How do I cite a line of poetry that is repeated throughout the poem? Should I just cite the first time it occurs?

The line is repeated several times throughout the poem
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What's the etymology of 'blank verse'?

Shakespeare uses a lot of blank verse. I get it that there's no proper rhyme scheme, but there is meter. Why is it called "blank"?
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668 views

Please help me understand a poem by W. B. Yeats

The poem in question is 'The Choice': The intellect of man is forced to choose perfection of the life, or of the work, And if it take the second must refuse A heavenly mansion, raging in the ...
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Does this poetic device have a name

Consider this couplet (it's just an example) The driver drove home safely. The Traveller returned home. The driver drove home. Safely, the Traveller returned home. If the placement of the ...
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Is the poetic phrase “Time stumbled and fell” considered a Juxtaposition? [closed]

In the poem "People on the Bridge" written by Wislawa Szymborksa (Translated by Joanna Trzceiak) the phrase "Time stumbled and fell" is used. Is this an example of a juxtaposition used by the poet?
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The Hill (from Spoon River anthology) - Exact meaning of a verse

I was reading an Italian translation of the following verse from "The Hill": They brought them dead sons from the war, And daughters whom life had crushed, ... The translation is ambiguous on ...
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Does this sentence make sense?

Does this make sense in a creative sense and it is grammatically or structurally correct? A heart so pure angel would implore What I'm trying to get at is "a heart so pure that it makes angels ...
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495 views

Word for the way a leaf falls [closed]

What is a single word that describes the back and forth way a leaf falls to the ground? I don’t think float or flutter quite capture the movement. Does ‘sway’ or ‘oscillate’ convey the image?
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Interpretation of “For the listener, who listens in the snow, And, nothing himself, beholds Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.” [closed]

Regarding the poem "The Snow Man" by Wallace Stevens, can anyone please help me interpret the last stanza, the part marked in bold here? One must have a mind of winter To regard the frost and the ...
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Poetry Problems

O western orb sailing the heaven, Now I know what you must have meant as a month since I walk’d, As I walk’d in silence the transparent shadowy night, As I saw you had something to tell ...

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