Year 1 Key Terms for Analysing Poetry

metaphor
a comparison of dissimilar things (not using ‘like’ or ‘as’)

simile
a comparison of dissimilar things (using ‘like’ or ‘as’)

alliteration
repetition of consonants at the start or inside words

assonance
repetition of vowel sounds at the start of, or inside, words

figurative language/figures of speech
not literal language, having an interesting form with layers of meaning

hyperbole
extravagant or very exaggerated

meter
a regular rhythm or beat in a line of poetry

free verse
poetry without a regular meter or beat

blank verse
poetry in iambic pentameters but unrhymed

personification
attributing living characteristics (often human) to a non-living thing

onomatopoeia
a word that sounds like what it means e.g. ‘hiss’

caesura
interrupting a line of poetry with punctuation

enjambment/run-on lines
a line of poetry with no punctuation at the end

oxymoron
combining two terms that seem contradictory

verse/stanza
a grouping of lines/a division/a unit in a poem

imagery
language that appeals to the imagination and the senses (sight, sound, smell, touch, taste)

lexical items/diction
the words chosen by the poet

tone
the attitude of the speaker towards the subject

mood
the atmosphere or predominant feeling of a poem

euphony
a pleasing, harmonious sound produced by the combination of words and sounds