Major Poetry

My Papa’s Waltz (my best guess! this one is Mr.Dodd’s favorite!)
Author: Theodore Roethke
Speaker: Young son of drunk, hardworking man
Audience: the father
Setting: in the Kitchen of their home; middle /lower class household; at night/ the kids bedtime; jolly but with darker layer
Theme / Main Idea: the father and son portrays much of their relationship – lots of love and fun, but there is a sense of domination and fear as well — every close relationship one has with another is like a waltz in this fashion

Significant pattern / form elements:
ABAB rhyme scheme—some are feminine rhymes; every other syllable is stressed (6 beats per line – like a waltz—3 beats)
4 stanzas, 12 lines – 4 lines per stanza

2 Literary Devices:
Personification -“whiskey on your breath”
Simile -“hung on like death” strength of boy hanging on to father = death hanging on to someone

Author: Theodore Roethke
Speaker: neat freak, precise, writer(?), bored with their life
Audience: themself
Setting: someone’s office / place with school supplies; meticulous, stuffy; looking back through time – their life
Theme / Main Idea: sadness of a repetitive life in an office – sometimes a profitable profession is not the best thing for one’s heart
Significant pattern / form elements:
1 stanza; 13 lines
No rhyme scheme

2 Literary Devices:
Alliteration “misery.. manilla.. mucilage”
Imagery- “dropping a fine film on nails and delicate eyebrows, glazing the pale hair, the duplicate grey standard faces”

The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner
Author: Randall Jarell
Speaker: young man who is drafted into the war; scared; dies
Audience: himself
Setting: American forces in a different country which they are at war with; looking back into the past (boy is already dead); sad, helplessness.
Central Idea/Theme: Anti-war – sending a child off to war is guaranteeing his death and the washing away of his potential for the world.
Note significant form or pattern elements:
1 stanza, 5 lines; no rhyming scheme except end rhyme of lines 2 and 5; syllables per line- 11, 12, 11, 11, 14;
Describe the use of at least two literary devices in the poem:
tactile imagery – “my wet fur froze”
alliteration – “fur froze”

Portrait d’une Femme
Author: Ezra Pound
Speaker: man describing a woman, well educated, a bit full of himself
Audience: the woman the speaker is describing, has nothing that she can truly call her own, despite receiving much from others
Setting: London; lonely, sad; 1912
Main idea / theme: even if you learn much from others, if you do not learn anything for yourself than you will truly have nothing to call your own
Significant pattern or form elements: last line is indented
Each line has 10 syllables, every other one being stressed — except for lines 15 and 29 and 30, single stanza, 30 lines
Literary devices:
Personification – “London has swept about you this score years and bright ships left you this or that in fee”
Imagery- ” the tarnished, gaudy, wonderful old work”
Metaphor- bright ships = intelligent people
Overarching metaphor of her interactions of different people to things about the sea

Acquainted With the Night
Author: Robert Frost
Speaker: walking along, lonely, well educated, unhappy

Audience: people that the speaker wants to wake from their trance of happiness and ease of mind

Setting: multiple nighttime walks, town/city surrounded by nature

Central Idea/Theme: to understand(become acquainted it) darkness in one’s life, you must experience it deeply

Note significant form or pattern elements:
end rhymes–121,232,343,414,11
repetition “I have”
repetition 1st and last lines “I have been one acquainted with the night” (and title of poem)
3 line stanza’s (except for last)
5 stanza’s total

Describe the use of at least two literary devices in the poem:
“saddest city lane” – personification
metaphor – Luminary clock = moon