Poetry Final Terms

martian poetry
form: no set rhyme or meter, but must be composed of wild metaphors (“heterogeneous ideas yoked together by violence”)
content: poems focus on visual description; they achieve radical estrangement from the familiar by using structural irony (a naïve narrator who doesn’t understand what he/she sees + hears)
EX: Craig Raine, “A Martian Sends a Postcard Home”

modern medeas
form: no set form, but poets are drawn to form and typically use strict forms like sestina, villanelle, and sonnet
content: subset of confessional school that looks at the violence of intimate family relationships, such as domestic violence, maternal ambivalence

confessional school
a group of poets who felt they needed to “confess” their sins through all different types of poetry; subject matter was usually drug abuse, failed love affairs, adultery, pregnancy, miscarriage, abortion, or suicide; the reader acts as a priest; EX. Sylvia Plath

the art of persuasion

calligraphic design that allows a word to be read the same backwards and forwards, though the word is not a palindrome

kinetic poetry
attempts to capture energy + motion through the arrangement of words on the page
EX: e.e. cummings, “Cat”

concrete poetry
typographical arrangement of words is as important as meaning; where words are not so much “read” as apprehended
EX: Harry Crosby, “Photoheliograph”

shape poetry
arranges the letters in the form of the idea presented; it is made of sentences that can be read; started during Protestant Reformation
EX: George Herbert, “Easter Wings”

Arabic artists word for shape poetry

Jewish mystic writers word for shape poetry

prose poem
a poem w/o line breaks – appeared as a block, paragraphed text – which retains poetic techniques like meter, imagery, rhyme, repetition, but also employs fictional prose techniques like plot + dialogue
content: b/c it’s a contradiction in terms, it’s good for working out feelings of ambivalence
EX: Charles Baudelaire, “Be Drunk”

ars poetica
form: no set rules, often in a another genre
content: “the art of poetry”; poem about writing poetry; author takes stock, revealing his/her articles of faith
EX: Marianne Moore, “Poetry”

history: grew out of Zen buddhist philosophy, seeks to capture a moment of perception
form: in english, usually 3 lines w/ 5-7-5 syllable pattern; originally composed in haiku sequences, multiples of 4, so haikus were 36, 40, 80, 100 verses long
content: turn on a kigo and offer a spiritual insight; as basho said, “the bones of haiku are oddness + plainness,” meaning each haiku should juxtapose an ordinary image with an unfamiliar one
EX: Ezra Pound, “In a Station of the Metro”

a seasonal cue; the pivotal moment in a haiku

form: 19 lines of iambic pentameter, laid out as 5 tercets and a quatrain; 2 repetends and 2 masculine rhyme; A1 b A2, a b A1, a b A2, a b A1, a b A2, a b A1 A2
content: due to high amount of repetition, form is ideal for poems about early stages of grief
EX: Elizabeth Bishop, “One Art”

hokku no renga
the firs verse of the haiku sequence

poem arranged in alphabetical order, esp. a poem with the left-hand column spelling out the alphabet when read vertically
EX: Psalm 25 + 34 (when read in Hebrew)

history: originally a Medival Persian/Arabic/Turkey love poem
form: 5-12 couplets, monorhymed: aa, ba, ca, da, ea, fa
content: celebrates mystical love + spirituality, finding one’s identity through a relationship to Allah/God; poet usually signs name in last line
EX: Catherine Bowman, “Twins of Gazelle Which Feed Among the Lilies”

history: 15th century Malayan
form: usually 4 or more quatrains with a repetend similar to villanelle except on following pattern
content: good for subtle, indirect critiques
EX: William Snyder, “If This Doesn’t Change Your Mind, Read It Again While Sitting in Your Old Truck: A Pantoum”

found poem
form: no set rhyme or stanza length; like the ode, can be combined with stricter rhyming forms
content: assembled from borrowed words occurring in poet’s environment; heightens existing poetic effects in language + offers political critique of borrowed voice
EX: Liz Ahl, “Panic Pantoum”

art that seeks to capture the fractured logic of dreams, and to honor the unconscious mind as the source of creativity

ode to an athlete
EX: B. Raquel Flowers Rivera, “Portrait of Lolo”

“drinking song”
EX: “Auld Lang Syne”

an ode written specifically for a bride on her way to the bridal chamber; Ancient Greek goddess of marriage would sing these to women

a musical poem that laments on someone’s death; sung by only one person, rather than a choir
EX. Jacob Furr, “Drift Away”; “I Remember You”

a dirge, funeral lament, or elegy performed to music which is plural in subject and performance
EX. Jacob Furr + wife, Christina, “Voices on the Sea”

pastoral elegy
an ode which mourns both the end of a simpler time, such as the author’s childhood or a rural way of life, and death; has no required form, but several content rules: a generalized lament against mortality, rhetorical questions

mock elegy
a poem which appears to be lamenting the passing of a thing, person, etc, but using irony – esp. hyperbole – to question the value of the passing, and may even be saying “good riddance”
EX: Maya Angelou, “Chicken Licken”

an ode mourning the death of one individual, many people, or an abstraction; pays tribute to that person or thing, reflects on mortality itself

a lyric, or formal song of praise, celebrating a person, event, or thing
form: ENGLISH ODES – 1 quatrain rhymed abab + 1 sestet rhymed cdecde
NORTH/SOUTH AMERICAN ODES – no stanza or rhyme rules
content: praise must move from strophe (turn) to antistrophe (counter turn) to epode (stand), taking 3 different positions on the subject matter
EX: Pablo Neruda, “Ode to the Watermelon”

2 images laid side by side for poignant or ironic effect

turn; first section of ode that takes first position on subject

counter turn; second section of ode that takes second position on subject

stand; third section of ode that takes third position on subject

the irony of exaggeration; in mock elegy, it allows heaping excessive + ridiculous praise on something or someone to actually cut him/her down

4 line stanza

3 line stanza

“farewell” or “conclusion”
final lines of a poem

a metaphor extended throughout an entire poem

when the intended meaning undermines the surface meaning
EX: sarcasm

form: quatrains with alternating iambic tetrameter + trimeter; rhyme scheme: xaxa or abab
content: once used as journalism, ballads usually have themes of class struggle, female soldiers, romantic criminals, and a functional first person “i”
EX: Robert Burns, “John Anderson My Jo”

form: tercets with a repetend, rhymed AAa or BBb
content: southern, african american music tradition; 1900-1940s; blues poems usually takes on themes such as struggle, despair, and sex; often have a first person narrator; structured like a hymn, but has dirty themes; metaphors are common
EX: Robert Johnson, “They’re Red Hot”

form: 39 lines, 6 sestets + final envoi as a tercet; no rhyme scheme, uses 6 end words in a specific pattern
content: ideal for subjects related to compulsion, addiction, and other ritualistic behaviors
EX: Elizabeth Bishop, “Sestina”

trick poetry
poetry built on a metaphoric + visual conceit that must be “solved” to add another layer of meaning to the poem
EX: Alice Walker, “Never Offer Your Heart to Someone Who Eats Hearts”