Post a poem in the comments please!

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You’ve been reading poems by a famous poet. Maybe you hate his/her poems. Maybe you love them. Maybe you like some and don’t like others.

For today’s blog comments, please post a poem and analyze it. What do you think of that poem? Do you like it? Do you hate it? Why? What makes you feel so strongly about this particular poem?

Here’s the assignment in a nutshell:

  1. Tell me the title of the poem.
  2. Name the poet who wrote that poem.
  3. Type at least one stanza from that poem (5 lines or more).
  4. Write a few sentences describing what you really think of that particular poem. (Use appropriate langauge, of course.)
  5. At the bottom of your entry, give the title of the book from which you copied that poem, and give the page number, just because it’s a good idea to cite your source.

How simple is that?

free teacher lesson plans on students poetry opinion paper journal topics

Image: iClipart

Here’s an example:

  1. The Pied Piper of Hamlin
  2. by Robert Browning
  3. …In Transylvania there’s a tribe/Of alien people who ascribe/The outlandish ways and dress/On which their fathers and mothers having risen/Out of some subterraneous prison…/So Willy, let me and you be wipers/Of scores out with all men–especially pipers!/And, whether they pipe us free from rats or from mice,/If we’ve promised them aught, let us keep our promise!”
  4. Most people are familiar with “The Pied Piper of Hamlin”, a tale in which a town is infested with rats. A piper comes to rid the town of their vermin, but when they refuse to compensate him as per the agreement they’d made, the magical piper steals their children from the people of Hamlin town. I love this poem, partly because it’s just a fun narrative to read to children, and also because it has a good moral. In this last line, it says, “If we’ve promised them aught, let us keep our promise!” What a good moral this tale has! People should keep their promises.
  5. Book title: POEMS OF ROBERT BROWNING (Edited by Donald Smalley); my quote comes from page 82.

A few tips about quoting poetry:

  • The / mark is what you write, when you come to the end of a line. Use this only if you’re writing prose, but including lines of poetry therein.
  • It’s a good idea to put quotation marks around the titles of short poems. Epic poems get underlined, italicized (if typed), or in a blog comment, you can just put them in ALL CAPS.
  • The elipsis (…) is used to show that your quote skipped around from one section to another.

I look forward to reading your comments! Which poem will you choose?

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37 responses »

  1. 1: XLIV
    2: Emily Dickinson
    3:”The moon was but a chin of gold/ A night or two ago,/ And now she turn her perfect face/ Upon the world below/ Her lips of amber never part”
    4: i like this peom because she is dicribing a girl but she is also talking about the midnight sky. To me this peom seem really prety.
    5:The title of my book is “The collected poems of EMILY DICKINSON” page 143

  2. 1. Father Malloy

    2. Edgar Lee Master

    3. You are over there, Father Malloy,
    Where holy ground is, and the cross marks every grave,
    Not here with us on the hill —
    Us of wavering faith, and clouded vision
    And drifting hope, and unforgiven sins.

    4. This poem is about a preacher who is buried in a different spot than a group a of people. These people are complaining in the poem (even though this can’t happen) that he is buried seperatly.

    5. http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/father-malloy/

    • As I’ve said for many of your classmates’ comment entries, I’m looking for more than just a matter-of-fact statement about the poem. See additional comments from me, and you’ll get what I mean.

  3. 1.”The Naming of Cats”
    2.T.S.Eliot
    3.The naming of cats is a difficult matter,/It isn’t just one of your holiday games;/You may think at first I’m as mad as a hatter/When i tell you, a cat must have three different names./First of all, there’s the name that the family use daily,/Such as Peter,Augustus,Alonzo or James./
    4.i think this poem is unusual and kind of silly because cats only need one name. And i love how unusual and very strange.
    5.The book is named “Old Possum’s Book of Pactical Cats” and its on page 1

    • For #4, I was really hoping more kids would include a literary analysis, using some of the vocabulary that we have been given in class. For example, “Agustus, Alonzo or James” has alliteration. Why not mention these kinds of peotic devices to enhance your opinion with intelligent vocabulary?

  4. 1. “The Pains of Sleep
    2.Samuel Taylor Colerige
    3. Ere on my bed my limbs I lay,
    It hath not been my use to pray
    With moving lips or bended knees;
    But silently, by slow degrees,
    My sprit I Love to compose…
    4.I think that this poem is about right before you go to bed like when it says “my use to pray” and you might be having a bad dream or something like that.
    5.The Rime Of The Ancient Mariner and other poems I found my poem on page 67-68

  5. 1.sonnet 154

    2.William Shakespeare

    3.The little Love-god lying once asleep,
    Laid by his side his heart-inflaming brand,
    Whilst many nymphs that vowed chaste life to keep,
    Came tripping by, but in her maiden hand,
    The fairest votary took up that fire,
    Which many legions of true hearts had warmed,
    And so the general of hot desire,
    Was sleeping by a virgin hand disarmed.
    This brand she quenched in a cool well by,
    Which from Love’s fire took heat perpetual,
    Growing a bath and healthful remedy,
    For men discased, but I my mistress’ thrall,
    Came there for cure and this by that I prove,
    Love’s fire heats water, water cools not love.

    4. Skakespeare truley defines Cupids power. Shakespeare wrote mostly of his sonnets were written for “a young man” or “The Dark Lady,” Shakespeare’s last two sonnets, were written about Cupid and his power. In this sonnet,cupid causes a man, Shakespeare, to fall in love with a woman who has chosen to stay a virgin forever, and the lesson he learns because he loves her. I like this poem because it shows how a man can stay with a woman no matter what if he truley loves her, and it shows Cupid has power to control love givin.

    5.http://poetry.eserver.org/sonnets/154.html

  6. 1.”come Up from the Fields Father”
    2.Walt Whitman
    3.Open the envelope quickly,
    O this is not our son’s writing, yet his name is sign’d,
    O a strange hand writes for our dear son, O stricken mother’s soul!
    All swims before her eyes, flashes with black, she catches the main words only,
    Sentences broken, gunshot wound in the breast, cavalry skirmish,
    taken to hospital,
    At present low, but will soon be better.
    4.I think this a good poem its sad and touching.
    5.I got off the website
    http://www.daypoems.net/poems/2029.html

  7. 1. “Touched by an Angel”
    2. Maya Angelou
    3. We are weaned from our timidity/
    In the flush of love’s light/
    we dare be brave/
    And suddenly we see/
    that love costs all we are/
    and will ever be./
    Yet it is only love/
    which sets us free./
    4. I think that Maya Angelou is talking about how love can be so horrible, but yet so amazing at the same time.
    5. I got this poem from the book “Just Give Me A Cool Drink of Water ‘Fore I Diiie. .. and on page 24.

    • If you’re going to hit the enter button and send your typing down to the next line, then you don’t need the / symbol. That’s only used when you include poetry lines in a sentence of prose, like this: When crane says, “‘However,’ replied the universe/ ‘The fact has not created in me/ A sense of obligation…'” the universe is supposedly talking, and that’s personification.

      So only use / when you’re inserting lines of poetry into a sentence. Otherwise, just make it look like this:
      A man said to the universe:
      “Sir I exist!”
      “However,” replied the universe,
      “The fact has not created in me
      A sense of obligation.”

      (No / symbol, you see…)

  8. 1. The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls.
    2. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
    3. The tide rises, the tide falls./
    The twilight darkens, the curlew calls;/
    Along the sea-sands damp and brown/
    The traveler hastens toward the town,/
    And the tide rises, the tide falls./
    Darkness settles on roofs and walls,/
    But the sea, the sea in darkness calls;/
    The little waves, with their soft, white hands/
    Efface the footprints in the sands…/
    4. I believe that Henry’s message has something to do with the existance of Humans. Like in lines 8 and 9, I think what Henry is trying to say is, Humans walk on the beach, and nature (the waves) will eventually wash away the remains we have left behind. And where it says “The tide rises, the tide falls”, I think it’s representing life and death. The tide rises (life), the tide falls (death). I like the poem, and it sorda makes sense to me.
    5. http://www.online-literature.com/henry_longfellow/924/ Sorry, I forgot my poetry book so there’s the link I used to get the poem.

    • I’m giving you eight out of the ten points possible, because a.) you’ve only quoted four lines here, not five and b.) your #4 isn’t so much a study of the poem, but just a vague impression. As I said in class, it’s not enough to just make a single statement telling what the poem’s about. You need to give your opinion of the poem you’ve chosen and write A FEW SENTENCES (not just one) describing your reason for connecting with that poem.

      This is meant to be a practice run before we start creating a thesis. Would you want a thesis like this: It talks about nature…? Nah. That’s not enough. Really make a statement here.

  9. 1. “Taking Leave of a Friend”
    2.Ezra Pound
    3.
    Blue mountains to the north of the walls,
    White river winding about them;
    Here we must make separation
    And go out through a thousand miles of dead grass.

    Mind like a floating wide cloud,
    Sunset like the parting of old acquaintances
    Who bow over their clasped hands at a distance.
    Our horses neigh to each others
    as we are departing.
    4. I think this poem is a little sad because it is about the parting of friends.
    5. http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/taking-leave-of-a-friend/.

    • I’m going to give you full credit, because your analysis is absolutely right. However, in your essay, I’d like to see more analysis than just a single statement. Say things like:

      The line, “Blue mountains to the north…White river winding about them…” reminds me of the mountains around Fairfield. It uses wonderful IMAGERY, because I’ve pictured mountains that I’m familiar with, as I’ve read these words.

      A statement like that uses the literary terms we’ve learned (i.e. imagery), and it also incorporates your personal experience in the statements you make, personalizing your analysis. That’s more like what I’m looking for.

  10. 1.”Forbearance”
    2.Ralph Waldo Emerson.
    3.Hast thou named all the birds without a gun;
    Loved the wood-rose, and left it on its stalk;
    At rich men’s tables eaten bread and pulse;
    Unarmed, faced danger with a heart of trust;
    And loved so well a high behavior
    In man or maid, that thou from speech refrained,
    Nobility more nobly to repay?—
    O be my friend, and teach me to be thine!
    4.This poem is very meaningful and shows a lot of compation towards your friends. This also shows that you are known by your friends.
    5.http://www.emersoncentral.com/poems/forebearance.htm.

    • I don’t get the same impression from this poem that you do. To me, it seems like Emerson is telling us to be nature-lovers in lines like “named all the birds without a gun”–meaning just enjoy them as living animals rather than as a dead trophy to a hunter. It’s about being a “friend” to NATURE, the way I see it.

      Where do you get the impression that it has something to do with human friendship? What lines tell you that? Maybe you need to go to an earlier stanza to find something that implies human friendship. Please reply by this Friday, or your score will remain 9/10. You need to clarify your statement in #4.

  11. 1.”I Didn’t Go To Church Today”
    2.Ogden Nash
    3.I didn’t go to church today,
    I trust the Lord to understand.
    The surf was swirling blue and white,
    The children swirling on the sand.
    He knows, He knows how brief my stay,
    How brief this spell of summer weather,
    He knows when I am said and done
    We’ll have plenty of time together.
    4.I really like this poem because it shows a belief that I have in religion. I don’t think that if you skip out on church one day something horrible is going to happen to you. I think God and I will have “plenty of time together” after I die just like Ogden Nash does. I was surprised how true this poem seemed to be to me.
    5.I got it from poemhunter.com…
    http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/i-didn-t-go-to-church-today/

  12. 1.”Silence”

    2.Marianne Moore.

    3.My father used to say,
    “Superior people never make long visits,
    have to be shown Longfellow’s grave
    nor the glass flowers at Harvard.
    Self reliant like the cat —
    that takes its prey to privacy,
    the mouse’s limp tail hanging like a shoelace from its mouth —
    they sometimes enjoy solitude,
    and can be robbed of speech
    by speech which has delighted them.
    The deepest feeling always shows itself in silence;
    not in silence, but restraint.”
    Nor was he insincere in saying, “`Make my house your inn’.”
    Inns are not residences.
    4.I like this poem beacause it is comparing people to cats. It makes sense and I like the way they compare the differences between cats and humans.
    5.http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/silence/ here is the link to my poem.

    • I’m going to give you full credit, because you put some thought into #4. However, I don’t think the statement in #4 will be adequate in a formal essay. Instead, you’ll need to use the word “simile” and terms like that. Otherwise, you’re limiting your “word choice” score.

  13. 1. The poem is called “Happiness”
    2. My poet is Carl Sandburg.
    3. I asked professors who teach the meaning of life to tell me
    What is happiness.
    And I went to famous executives who boss the work of
    thousands of men.
    They all shook their heads and gave me a smile as though
    I was trying to fool with them
    And then one Sunday afternoon I wandered out along the
    Desplaines river
    And I saw a crowd of Hungarians under the trees with their
    women and children and a keg of beer and an
    accordion.
    4. I think what Sandburg is trying to say is that happiness cannot have a full definition that applies to everyone. Peoples happiness must be experienced by them, and no one can tell them what they think is happiness and expect them do think the same. The most certainly can, of course though. People can also have one or more happiness experiences, there is no limit to what can make one person happy, and Sandburg express that in the poem “Happiness”. I guess the title is kind of a giveaway 😉
    5. I received this information from the book The American Experience: Poetry. The poem can be found on 183-184 within the book.

  14. 1.) “This is Just To Say”
    2.) by William Carlos Williams
    3.) I have eaten/the plums/that were in/the icebox

    and which/you were probably/saving/for breakfast

    Forgive me/they were delicious/so sweet/and so cold

    4.) I think this is a very cute poem! I know it’s short, but it’s awesome, because it sounds like a note on the fridge.

    5.) website:
    http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15535

    • I’m looking for something a little more in depth than your analysis in #4. I gave you nine of the 10 points possible. When you write your essay, try to say a little more about a poem than “it’s cute”–use the vocabulary we’ve been learning in class to express your ideas. That’ll help.

  15. 1. “Renascene”
    2. by Edna St. Vincent Millay
    3″ … Deep in the earth I rested now. / Cool is its hand upon the brow/And soft its breast beneath the head/ Of one who is gladly dead./ And all at once, and over all/ The pitying rain began to fall;/ I lay and heard each pattering hoof/ Upon my lowly, thatched roof,/ And seemed to love the sound far more/ Than ever I had done before./ For rain it hath a friendly sound/ To one who’s six feet under ground;/ And scarce the friendly voice or face,/ A grave is such a quiet place.”
    4. This poem is about a woman who wants to die but when she does she realizes that its a lonely place. She can’t touch the rain or see the Spring-silver. This woman wishes she was still alive now that she got her first wish. I chose this piece of the poem because when I read the line “A grave is such a quiet place.” it made the hair on the back of my neck stand up.
    5. From the book The American Experience: Poetry.

  16. 1. Quality time
    2. Shel Silverstein
    3. My father is a golfer-/He lets me be his tee./He puts the ball uponmy nose/And hits it right off me./He says that Ican share the joy/Of every ball he hits./Oh, ain’t it grand to have a dad/Who spends time with his kids.
    4. I picked this poem because its funny how the kid doesn’t know how mean the dad is being.
    5. Falling up by Shel Silverstein, and on page 143

    • Like Haley, you don’t have enough written here for #4. It’s funny? Is that all? Do you see anything unusual about the choice of words Silverstein uses? Why do you think he gave this poem the title, “Quality Time”? Is there anything ironic or sarcastic in the poem? If so, try using that kind of vocabulary (irony/sarcasm) to describe the humor here.

  17. 1. “i carry your heart with me”
    2.E.E. Cummings
    3.no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want/
    no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)/
    and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant/
    and whatever a sun will always sing is you/
    4. I think this poem is a good poem. I also think that it has some weird lines in it though.
    5. I got it off a website so…………………………..
    http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/i-carry-your-heart-with-me-2/

    • Haley student #11: I thank you for the link. That can be helpful for me and for your fellow commenters. However, I will not give you full credit for this, for two reasons: a.) your third item only offers four lines; five were required and b.) To just say, “I think this poem’s good; it’s weird though” does not constitute much of a comment. I’m looking for a more extensive (bigger), more reflective (look inside yourself) response to the poem. Take another look at my example for #4:

      4.Most people are familiar with “The Pied Piper of Hamlin”, a tale in which a town is infested with rats. A piper comes to rid the town of their vermin, but when they refuse to compensate him as per the agreement they’d made, the magical piper steals their children from the people of Hamlin town. I love this poem, partly because it’s just a fun narrative to read to children, and also because it has a good moral. In this last line, it says, “If we’ve promised them aught, let us keep our promise!” What a good moral this tale has! People should keep their promises.

      That’s the kind of response I’m looking for, rather than, “I liked it, but it was weird.” To get all the points, you’ve got to challenge yourself to really delve into the poem.

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