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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6
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2answers
558 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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9answers
12k views

Is there a word for the sadness over "What might have been"?

Context: You made the decision not to see a person any more. The relationship was good, you were both happy with one another but the one main stumbling block (for you) in the relationship was never ...
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7answers
2k views

Term for poetry that mimics what it describes

I'm blanking on the term for when a verse mimics that which it describes - for example, a poem talking about a confusing encounter would become confusing itself - each time I search for it I keep ...
10
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1answer
3k views

What do you call a poem or song that sets up a rhyme and then ignores it?

Here is a line from the song "Popular" in the musical Wicked. I am trying to explain what we call the anticlimax of the last three lines, where a rhyme is expected but not delivered. When I see ...
2
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1answer
858 views

Meter in Clare's "I am"

I've determined that almost all of John Clare's "I am" is in iambic pentameter. But I'm having trouble identifying the meter of the following line: But the vast shipwreck of my life's esteems My ...
2
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1answer
1k views

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 ...
2
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1answer
2k 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 this ...
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1answer
248 views

"Niveous" poetic synonyms

Are there any more poetic synonyms for "snow-white" and "niveous"? I was searching but I've only found "nival".
29
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4answers
5k 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 ...
11
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2answers
4k 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 and ...
33
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3answers
5k views

Meaning of "bull" in Byron's "this is no bull, although it sounds so"

From Byron's Don Juan: One with her flush'd cheek laid on her white arm, And raven ringlets gather'd in dark crowd Above her brow, lay dreaming soft and warm; And smiling through ...
9
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1answer
590 views

What's the point of omitting the "e", as in "sceptered" going to "scepter'd", in English poetry?

These are a few of my favorite lines of Shakespearean poetry: Methinks I am a prophet new inspir’d, And thus expiring do foretell of him: His rash fierce blaze of riot cannot last, For ...
6
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1answer
1k 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 ...
5
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2answers
246 views

Shakespeare's Scansion: the Sequel

Okay, so we seem to have established (with lots of great and generous help from StoneyB and Peter Shor) that: where it came to certain diphthongs, Shakespeare either elided syllables that didn't fit ...
15
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3answers
13k views

What does the grave accent mark on words mean?

What exactly does the grave accent mean in English? An example from Shakespeare’s Sonnet 30: The sad account of fore-bemoanèd moan
6
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1answer
480 views

Why are diacritics used in words that apparently don't need them? Is it some sort of poetic license? [duplicate]

In his poem Spring and Fall, Gerard Manley Hopkins uses diacritics where one would normally not see them. Does anyone know why? Here is the poem: Márgarét, áre you gríeving Over Goldengrove ...
6
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5answers
68k 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 ...
5
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1answer
2k views

Term for poetic technique in which the last word of a line is the first word of the next

"Runs in the family" by Amanda Palmer contains the following lyrics: Strips in the city and shares all her best tricks with Me? Well, I'm well The first word of the bridge, "Me?", is ...
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1answer
946 views

How to describe narrated action?

Let's say we have a poem that has a first-person point of view and then goes like: I have eaten the cookies Now, when I write about this poem and want to describe the action in the poem, would it ...
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3answers
5k views

Should it be "you and I" or "you and me" in the song "We are the world"

In the song "We are the world" by Michael Jackson and Lionel Ritchie, there are these lyrics: "We are the world, We are the children We are the ones who make a brighter day So, let's ...
6
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2answers
16k 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 ...
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2answers
348 views

Is there a name for this paragraph indentation style?

In longer form poems you sometimes see a verse where the first line is indented to the level of the end of the previous verse’s last line. For example, this Keats poem: or this poem from Wordsworth: ...
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5answers
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Do readers think of the word "ejaculate" beyond its common sexual meaning? [closed]

I am an editor, and a poet whom I work with has included the expression "I ejaculated little prayers" in one of his stanzas, which we all know has the dictionary meaning of "intensely calling out." ...
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2answers
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Meaning of "top" in "to sleep as sound as a top"

From "The Early Bird", by George MacDonald. A little bird sat on the edge of her nest; Her yellow-beaks slept as sound as tops; Day-long she had worked almost without rest, And had ...
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3answers
334 views

Is this a grammatically correct line in a poem: “Will he roll the dice, and follow it to Vegas?”?

I want to use the following line in a poem: "Will he roll the dice, and follow it to Vegas?" A couple of things to note; firstly, obviously I'm using "roll the dice" in both a figurative/idiomatic ...
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2answers
3k views

Term to a verse that starts with the last word of the previous verse

The music "Glad you came" by The Wanted has the following verses Turn the lights out now, now I'll take you by the hand Hand you another drink, drink it if you can Can you spend a little ...
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1answer
2k views

What is the name of a particular poetic foot, unstressed, stressed, stressed?

There are six well-known feet in English poetry--dactyl, spondee, anapest, iamb, trochee, and pyrrhic. However, is there also a name for the foot with unstressed, stressed, stressed, and/or is it ...
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4answers
1k 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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0answers
291 views

A figure of speech combining two phrases

I have read somewhere that it is typical of poems such as Nibelungenlied to use a figure of speech which in fact merges two phrases into one by the mean of a common word. An example could be the ...
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2answers
881 views

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 ...