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Read the following short stories: Nikki Giovanni "Poetry", Rita Dove "Sonnet in Primary Colors", Emily Dickinson "I'm Nobody! Who are You?", Robert Frost "Fire and Ice", writing assignment
1.Read the following short stories:
° Nikki Giovanni "Poetry"
° Rita Dove "Sonnet in Primary Colors" p.354
° Emily Dickinson "I'm Nobody! Who are You?" p.361
° Robert Frost "Fire and Ice" p.369
Read each of your four poems silently toyourself four times. Breathe deeply, and take your time. Sink into the poem andtry to understand its soul.
Next,summarize each poem in one or two sentences. How is sound working in the poem?What happens in the poem? Who is speaking? What is the poem's message? What doyou notice about the way that the poem sounds? Does this poem make use of anypoetic sound devices that you learned about i.e., assonance, consonance,repetition?
2.Read each one of your poems out loud four times, using four different voices.This is really fun. See if you can make a small child laugh. Read it withdifferent emotions, like anger or grief. Or pretend you're a favorite cartooncharacter. As you do this, get used to the rhythms of each poem and the play ofwords. Understand the persona. Listen to yourself speaking the poem out loud.Who are you? And who are you talking to?
Foreach poem, write one or two paragraphs commenting on the experience of readingaloud. This writingexercise should be 4 - 8 paragraphs in length.
Next,summarize each poem in one or two sentences. What happens in the poem? Who isspeaking? What is the poem's message?
3. Assignment #2 - Imagery & MetaphorExercise
Usingthe poems above, in this second exercise, you will learn to identify a poem's"figures of speech." We're primarily interested in metaphor(comparison) and imagery.
Chooseone of the poems from your set and write a 3-4 paragraph response in which youdescribe the pictures these poems create in your mind. Make specific referenceto each poem's use of metaphor and metonymy, as well as their imagery. Be sureto review these key terms/ideas in our textbook.
Hereis an example to get you started, using a famous Ezra Pound poem:
Ina Station of the Metro
Theapparition of these faces in the crowd;
Petalson a wet, black bough.
I see a crowded subway platform, and out of the moving crowd of people, variousbeautiful faces take shape, one upon another. I get this particular picture forseveral reasons. I see the subway platform because of the title, and I see thecrowd because the poem says there's a crowd. The reason the crowd appears to bemoving lies in the main feature of the poem, which is its metaphor.Essentially, the poem is nothing but a metaphor, where the second line is ametaphor for the first line. In other words, "petals on a wet, blackbough" is a metaphor for "the apparition of these faces in the crowd."To me, this means the crowd (bough) is moving and undifferentiated (wet, black)and the faces are incredibly beautiful (petals on a bough). In my picture,singularly beautiful faces take shape in succession because they are"apparitions." They appear to me from the moving, undifferentiatedmass of bodies (the crowd). Note: while metaphor and imagery are technicalterms and therefore objective, interpretation is subjective. The point is,don't get hung up on finding the correct meaning of a poem while learning the techniquesof poetry, just dive in and share what you 'see'!