English Poetry Terms and Short Story Terms

An indirect comparison between two thing using the words like, as or than. (figure of speech)

a direct comparison between two thing NOT using the words like, as or than. (figure of speech)

an object that has meaning in itself, but it also represents something which is larger than itself. (figure of speech)

giving human characteristics or qualities to something which is not human. (Figure of Speech)

a reference in another area of learning (history, Bible, mythology, etc.) which the author expects you to know. (Figure of Speech)

a regular pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables in a line of poetry. (Iambic pentameter) (sound device)

Rhyme Scheme
the regular pattern of end rhyme. (sound device)

End rhyme
rhyme at the end of a line of poetry (sound device)

Internal rhyme
rhyme within one or more lines of poetry (sound device)

the repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words to create a certain effect.
(sound device)

the repetition of vowel sounds within lines of poetry to create a certain effect. (sound devices)

the repetition of words, phrases or ones to create a certain effect. (sound devices)

free verse
unrhymed poetry which has no regular metrical patter. It sounds more like regular speech. (sound device)

Imagery (images)
word pictures which appeal to one or more of the five senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste, or sell)

the poet’ style of writing shown by the choice of words which may be simple, flowery. formal, slangy, orange, etc.

Lyric or lyrical poem
a short poem which expresses the poet’s thoughts and feeling.

Narrative poem
a poem which tells a story.

the poem’s message, lesson or moral.

the person speaking or narrating the poem.

Iambic tetrameter
4 stressed syllables

branch out ideas from one idea

jotting down ideas randomly

free writing
sitting down and just writing

the struggle or clash between opposing characters, forces, or emotions.

internal conflict
a conflict within the character’s own heart or mind. An ______ ________ is usually created when the main character undergoes an emotional struggle.

any scene that presents events that happened before the main time frame of a story.

The use of clues given earlier in a story to hint at what is going to happen later in a story.

the feeling of uncertainty or anxiety about what is going to happen next.

the time period and place in which the action of a story takes place.

an atmosphere that affects the way we feels we read a story.

the people you meet in a story, poem, or play.

the “good guy” of the story

conflicts with the protagonist, attempting to prevent the protagonist from attaining his or her goals.

round character
a character with many different character traits

flat character
a character with only 1 or 2 traits, which can be described in 1 or 2 words.

static character
a character that does not change in the story.


foil characters
contrast characters

dynamic character
A character who seems to live and breathe, who grows and changes during a story.

the reason a character behaves a certain way.

The writer’s revelation of a character’s personality, which can either be direct or indirect.

direct characterization
The writer plainly tells us about the people who inhabit the characters’s fictional worlds.

indirect characterization
the reader has to judge what the character is like by observing the character through dialogue in the story.

conversations between characters. We can learn about a so try’s characters not only by what they say, but also by how they respond to one another.

a physical description of a character

private thoughts
a charter’s thoughts that can also reveal their personality traits.

learn about characters
how other characters in the story feel about other characters is a way we can…

something the rear sees being done by the character

a storyteller that controls everything we know about the characters and events in a story. We the reader see the story through their point of view.

third person omniscient narrator
the narrator is not a story character and almost never refers to him/herself directly

first-person narrator
a character in the story that is talking to the reader using the 1st person pronoun “I.”

unreliable narrator
a character in the story that is talking to the reader in 1st person and isn’t reliable in their way of telling the story.

third person limited narrator
a narrator that plays no part in the story and just tells it. In this point of view, the narrator focuses on just one character but talks about the character in 3rd person using he or she.

the attitude a speaker or writer takes toward a subject, character, or audience.

the writer’s unique use of language and style.

events which make the protagonist(s)’s life more difficult.

The turning point on the story; the dramatic or emotional high point in the story; the point when the major protagonist confronts a major conflict.

Resolution or Denouement
The falling action after the climax; “tying up the loose ends;” the reader discovers how everything is resolved.

struggle between two forces.

man vs. man external conflict
one man having a conflict with another man

man vs. nature external conflict
man having a conflict with something in nature

man vs. society external conflict
man having a conflict with the society.

man vs. supernatural external conflict
man having a conflict with God or a “supernatural being” ghosts, etc.

man vs. himself internal conflict
man having a conflict with his inner-self, could be morals, etc.

Something that is ironic. Can be verbal, situational, or dramatic

Situational Irony
It occurs when there is a contrast between what would seem appropriate and what really happens or when what we expect to happen is in fact the opposite of what really does take place.

Verbal Irony
A writer or speaker says one thing but really means something completely different.

Dramatic Irony
The audience or reader knows something important that the character in the story does not know. If the character knew what the reader knew, then the character would have acted differently.

When at least 3 things are being exposed; usually the setting, some characters, and the basic situation.

Rising Action
The part that builds up to the climax. Contains complications and conflicts that the characters in the story face.

A person who is blamed for the mistakes, problems, or sins of others. THe people who accuse the ____________ believe that if they get rid of the scapegoat, they would get rid of their problems.

Mass Hysteria
When a large group of people (mass) lack self control and show unrestrained excitement or emotion. They often lose their ability to think rationally, reasonably and logically.

Pretending to be what one is not.

A severe test or trial.

A container in which metals, ores, etc., can be melted.