Study Guides

Study Guide:  Poetry

Your exam is structured in two parts:  objective and subjective.

Your second exam will be solely on poetry and poetic terms.  Study your handout well.  Know the definition and an example for each term.  Review the poems discussed in class.  Like the first, the exam is structured into 2 parts.

PART I.  Objective — Multiple choice

Review the poetic terms as indicated on the syllabus as well as on your poetic term guide.  You should know each term’s definition and application of such term in the poems discussed.  Think about how we noted the meaning of each poetic terms in relation to the poems read.  There will also be several questions on poems discussed.  It would be wise to study the following:  “A Valediction:  Forbidding Mourning”; “To Autumn”; “Those Winter Sundays”; “The Red Wheelbarrow”; and “Birches”.

For example, you might be asked the following:

  1. When Keats describes autumn as a harvester who is “sitting careless on a granary floor” or “on a half-reaped furrow sound asleep”, he is using:                                       a.  personification                        b.  imagery                              c.  paradox

Each statement must be read carefully to understand what term is being referred to.  Pay close attention to the lines and poems used as examples. (answer–a).

PART II.  Essay: 

Read Natalie Diaz’s poem “Why I Hate Raisins.”

Write an essay on how the tone shifts in each stanza that reveals the theme at end. What is the theme and what poetic elements does Diaz use to demonstrate it? Cite well the poem to support your ideas. You do want to provide a clear summary of the poem before your analysis–but not in the introduction.

Your essay must be written in a 5 paragraph format with a clear thesis.

Do not use the first person/second person. Do not cite more than 4 lines–be selective in your references.

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