poetry journal

1. Romance - Edgar Allan Poe
The rhyme scheme makes this poem a lighthearted read. Personification of “romance” in the form of a bird gives the poem a lively twist.

2. A Girl – Ezra Pound
Interesting comparison of a girl to a growing tree. I can almost see in my head how the tree wraps and grows on the speaker’s body.

3. Portrait of Adamine - Ryan Flaherty
The title reminded me of van Gogh’s Portrait of an Artist. Lots of imagery in this poem. I especially like the poem describes the speaker’s feelings of longing.

4. A Mystic As Soldier - Siegfried Sassoon
I love war poetry! Despite having to face death, the soldier’s continued patriotism and love for God is absolutely inspirational.

5. The Poor Boy’s Christmas - Ellis Parker Butler
This short poem is rather sad, and even more heartbreaking to think that reality is worse. The repetition of “widow” emphasizes the sorrow of losing a father.

6. The Rich Boy’s Christmas - Ellis Parker Butler
Compared to the previous poem, this poem is equally as gloomy. The last line ends strangely with a word that does not fit the rhyme and smooth flow the poet established throughout the poem.

7. Morning Rain - Tu Fu
Lots of enjambment to emphasize words and to create pauses. Original poem is in Chinese, would be interesting to see how the translation differs.
Could you compare the translation?

8. The Phantom Horsewoman - Thomas Hardy
Title is misleading because the poem actually talks about a man..

9. And God Created Abortion - Sharon Ester Lampert
The structure of the poem is very unique; the poet numbered each sentence / line. Interesting take on the creation of mankind.

10. The Abortion - Anne Sexton
The poet uses a large variety of descriptive verbs for personification. Repetition emphasizes on the “death” aspect of an abortion, adding a sad feeling to the poem.

11. The Hippopotamus - T.S. Eliot
Two completely unrelated things, a hippopotamus and the church is brought together in this entertaining poem. The poet praises the church through comparing it to a hippo. Most stanzas contain solid arguments, with the first two lines talking about the hippo and the last two lines talking about the church.

12. *This is not a weather poem, oh well They were Too Poor for Buttons - Ellie Evans
This poem reflects the idea that money is not the most important. The mother in the poem is a very creative woman, who loves her daughter very much. The last line of the poem ("... I envied her for the magic wart proud on her knuckles.) was slightly confusing.

13. The Fury Of Rainstorms - Anne Sexton
The poem personifies rain as "red ants", then proceeds to describe the ants with great imagery. Towards the end of the poem, the poet changes subjects and talks briefly about depression. I like the way the poet linked the rain / ants with depression.

14. Of Nature I shall have enough - Emily Dickinson
This short four-lined poem is basically one sentence with enjambment. It is interesting how the poet "entitles" nature to a "Bumble bee's / Familiarities"; I guess it makes sense since bumble bees fly around nature all day long.

15. Where the Sidewalk Ends - Shel Silverstein
In the poem, the poet describes a place where conditions are better than the present. I think this is a really creative take on our society (with its pollution etc). It is almost as if the poet wants us all to be children again; to be more naive and simple.

16. Dream Deferred - Langston Hughes
This poem is really fun to read! I think how the poem has both a "playful" side, and a more serious side. The playful side explores what crazy things might when a dream is postponed, while the more serious side explores the possible consequences of an unfollowed dream. I really how the poet plays with the different connotations of "dream".

Checked 18 September 15/15-25 KBoyce
Seems like you are enjoying yourself. Keep going..and expand commentary.

17. The Road Not Taken – Robert Frost
Poet’s contemplation on which road to take; it reflects the process people endure everyday when making decisions. Calm and curious tone.

18. Television – Roald Dahl
Very fun and lighthearted read. Strong message regarding the modern transition for kids from books to television. Lots of imagery and sensory devices.

19. Mother to Son – Langston Hughes
Inspiring message. Poem is rhythmic with lots of imagery and juxtaposition within the imagery. The use of apostrophes for abbreviation gives the poem a cultural spin.

20. One Art – Elizabeth Bishop
Interesting referral to “losing” as a form of art that everyone practices. The repetition of “disaster” builds up to emphasize the disaster in the last stanza. As the poem progresses, stanzas in the poem introduce “bigger” losses.

21. Chemin De Fer – Elizabeth Bishop
Characterization and personification of the hermit adds a lively twist to this otherwise calm and slightly sad poem. Some imagery, but also many sound devices.

22. Letter To N.Y. – Elizabeth Bishop
Many references to New York that I can relate to personally. Seems like the speaker is always one step behind everyone else, trying to adjust and catch on. Repitition of “what you are doing and where you are going” ironically outlines the confusion of the speaker.

23. The Fish – Elizabeth Bishop
Lots of imagery giving a lively description of the fish. The fish is personified to a war veteran, interesting imagination of the speaker (fisherman). Structure of the poem is filled with enjambment and long sentences. Great ending where the fish is let free.

24. I Loved You (English translation)– Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin
A poem donning the message that if you love something, set it free. Rather sad tone and mood, but also hopeful. Would be interesting (if I can understand it) to read the original poem for comparison.

25. Sea Fever – John Masefield
Repetition of the starting line of each stanza emphasizes the vast possibilities of the sea. Rhyme gives the poem a sing-song feel. Lots of imagery.

26. An Almost Make Up Poem – Charles Bukowski
The lack of traditional poetry form makes focusing on the content of the poem difficult. The poem speaks truth from a cynical perspective and voice.

27. The Tiger – William Blake
Rhyme in the poem creates a rhythmic flow. Questions the creation of the tiger (referring to God as a creator). Poem has disbelieving tone. The speaker is puzzled on how the same God can create such a beat (tiger) while also create lambs (everything opposite of a tiger).

28. Solitude – Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Great use of contrasting attitude to illustrate contrasting responses. The repetition of the structure demonstrates that when all remains the same but one’s attitude, everything else can change. The sad tone of this poem delivers a sad, yet often times true message.

29. The Rose that Grew from Concrete – Tupac Shakur
Interesting contract between often delicate, “soft” life to the hard concrete. Short poem with very straightforward language.

30. She Walks in Beauty – George Gordon Byron
Beautiful description of a female, however the poem describes the female from the idea male perspective, where beauty is superior to all else. Calm tone.

31. A Crazed Girl – William Butler Yeats
A lively depiction of a girl gives the poem a gleeful tone. The “crazed girl” in this poem is either very liberated and free, or mentally insane.

32. Have A Nice Day – Spike Milligan
Very funny but twisted poem. Lots of sarcasm. The use of conversation within the poem paints a lively image of the scene that is described.

5 December 2011 32/45-75


Title - Poet
Looking For a Sunset Bird in Winter - Robert Frost
- Very rhythmic and pleasant to read; follows a rhyme scheme
- "The breath of air had died of cold" - sounds like what I feel every morning!
- Contrast between the summer bird and the winter bird is interesting
- Disappointed tone, perhaps a little sad mood
The Garden in Winter - Lucy Maud Montgomery
- Enjambment in order to create rhythmic 7 syllable lines (all lines except one are 7 syllables long)
- AABBCC rhyme scheme
- Lots of imagery
- While the poem describes a winter scene (which most associate with the color white), different colors are incorporated into the poem (e.g. "red / Banner of poppies", "
sunsets o'er it throw / Flame-like splendor, lucent glow", "Rainbow", "golden cup")
In Winter in my Room - Emily Dickinson
- Lots of enjambment creates may pauses; enjambment used to emphasize certain words
- I do not generally associate worms and snakes with my room
- Interesting diction to describe the worm and snake (e.g. "creeping blood", "surveyed my chamber floor", "Propitiation's claw", "He fathomed me -- / Then to a Rhythm Slim / Secreted in his Form / As Patterns swim / Projected him")
- Little surprise at the end as the poet reveals that all is but a dream
Winter Song - Wilfred Owen
- War poetry? "The browns, the olives, and the yellows died" - possibly referring to difference races of people dying in war
- Religious references ("swept up to heaven", "Christmastide")
- While the majority of the poem 'feels' cold, "The sun-brown and the summer-gold are blowing" gives a warm, toasty feeling
- The cold weather emphasizes the sadness in death
- Generally gloomy tone, however some phrases gives the feeling of light shining through the darkness --> hope ("But they shall gleam with spiritual glinter")
Fast Rode the Knight - Stephen Crane
- Sounds like the stereotypical description of Prince Charming --> "To save my lady!"
- The horse in the poem ends tragically; the knight can achieve very little without his horse, but ruthless enough he is able to leave his horse at the door of the castle to die..
- Contracting emotions regarding the knight; at first the knight seems heroic and brave, however his treatment towards his horse suggests a cruel nature
Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night - Dylan Thomas
- Repetition of "Rage, rage against the dying of the light" reminds reader of the main idea of this poem: (sounds cliché.. ) to live each day fully and to not idle life away
- Darkness is associated with death = negative connotation
- Lightness is weaved into the darkness ("sang the sun in flight", "blinding sight", "blaze like meteors")
- Although poem revolves around death, mood is more hopeful and encouraging rather than somber and depressing
Let Me Died A Youngman's Death - Roger McGough
- HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA <-- my first reaction
- This poem is hilarious, I would love to quote some parts everything
- Very fun and pleasant to read; although title seems gloomy - lighthearted, motivational, optimistic mood
- 1st stanza = not too interesting introduction, 2nd / 3rd / 4th stanzas = exciting scenarios, 5th stanza = dies down to a not too interesting conclusion
- Interesting to see elders participating in activities generally perceived to be for younger people
A Smile To Remember - Charles Bukowski
- The title implied a cheerful memory but the poem was quite depressing and horrifying
- Imagery of the goldfish really freaked me out because I have fear of fish
- Lacks structure of a poem, seems more like a prose spread across several lines
- The greatness of maternal love is shown once again through the braveness of the mother when faced with domestic violance
- Still freaked out by the goldfish..
Drinking Alone - Li Po
- First thought: I did not know ancient Chinese drank wine
- Beautiful nature imagery contrasts with the stereotypical drunk "scene" / what is associated with excessive drinking (often unclassy and unpleasant)
- I like this: "We share life's joys when sober. Drunk, each goes a separate way."
Alone And Drinking Under The Moon - Li Po
- Can this possibly be a sequel?!
- There are lots of similarities between the two poems, for example the idea of the moon, shadow and speaker together, the nature imagery and the ending with the Milky Way
- More lonely and somber tone compared to the first poem
- Personification of the moon seems to amplify the poet's loneliness
Talking Turkeys! - Benjamin Zephaniah
- I felt like I was reading rap song lyrics typed by a 10 year old through text message (dey ofen typ lyke dis)
- A powerful and sad message delivered through a fun and lively poem, however I don't feel like the context of the poem fits with the mood
Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night - Dylan Thomas
- Interesting way to plea for life
- Life symbolized by light, thus death the dying of light
- Somber mood
Don't Go Far Off - Pablo Neruda
- A touching poem, very longing mood
- Lots of enjambment used to slow down pace of the poem
Invictus - William Ernest Henley
- Rhyme gives poem a smooth flow
- Title of poem reminds me of the rugby movie (haha)
- Powerful last lines that summarize the theme of the poem: taking control of your own destiny
Fire and Ice - Robert Frost
- Obvious contrast between fire and ice
- Context of poem can be applied to so many situations....
- Enjambment towards the end helps emphasize the short lines even more
On the Ning Nang Nong - Spike Milligan
- Abundance of sound devices: onomatopoeia and alliteration
- Fun poem, chaotic but mood is light: fun to read
- Don't really understand what it's talking about though
Let Me Die A Youngman's Death - Roger McGough
- Strange: "Or when I'm 104 / and banned from the Cavern / may my mistress / catching me in bed with her daughter"
- Wonder is there is a significance between the ages 73, 91 and 104
Do not stand at my grave and weep - Mary Elizabeth Frye
- Repetition of "I am (something)" emphasizes the poet's view of death
- Rhythm of poem is fast
- Perhaps the intent of the poem is to comfort the family of the dead
I Speak Not - George Gordon Byron
- Ironic how the poem is entitled "I Speak Not", yet the content of the poem speaks about a secret love
- The poem seems more like a prose broken into lines
Anywhere You Choose - Ernestine Northover
- Beautiful poem, very sensual
- Definitive structure
- Repetition of "With ... I'll .. you" and "... you choose" defines clearly the relationship between the speaker and the audience
Childhood - David Bates
- Captures the essence of childhood with great imagery and similes
- Simple language
- ABAB rhyme gives poem a smooth rhythm
- Mood is lighthearted
To an Athlete Dying Young - Alfred Edward Housman
- Talks about a promising athlete's sad early death
- Perhaps a metaphor to dreams that die young and are unable to come true
- Mood changes from ambitious and exciting, to sad and neutral
Disabled - Wilfred Owen
- Another sad, pensive poem by Wilfred Owen
- Depicts the quickly change of events: a sad truth, soldier who fight with their lives often fade out of glory upon the end of war, their sacrifice forgotten
- Lots of gruesome imagery
Last Night I Dreamed of Chickens - Jack Prelutsky
- Imagery of chickens is quite funny
- I don't know if chickens are a metaphor for something more serious..
A Clear Midnight - Walt Whitman
- Very short poem
- Interesting how the hour of the soul is AWAY from books, art etc; these are elements we turn to today for enjoyment
Trees - Joyce Kilmer
- The rhyme contribute to the poem's lighthearted tone and mood
- Comparing manmade to natural; perhaps trying to say that we can never "make" nature
- May be talking about deeper themes such as resource exploitation
As Soon as Fred Gets Out of Bed - Jack Prelutsky
- It's a silly poem
- I'm not sure whether the poem is simply telling a story, or explaining something deeper
We Wear the Mask - Paul Laurence Dunbar
- The mood of the poem is neutral at first, but more exciting towards the end
- It's interesting how instead of demoting hiding behind a facade, this poem promotes and shows the positive of hiding
- Contrast between start of poem and end of poem
I Cry - Tupac Shakur
- Quite sad to cry alone
- The end of the poem is a lonely and depressing mood
Love's Philosophy - Percy Bysshe Shelley
- Lots of imagery with nature
- Loose rhyme
- Theme: everything deserves to be loved
My Papa's Waltz - Theodore Roethke
- Perhaps talking about abuse?
- Waltz, an elegant dance, to describe a horrific event: method of coping
- Lots of dark imagery
Not Waving but Drowning - Stevie Smith
The poet states very un-subtlely (e.g. "And now he's dead"). Although the poem talks about death, the mood is quite neutral. The contrast between the man's "larking" and his sudden death is interesting, almost as if the man has been hiding behind a mask of larking, hiding his dark side.
Who Ever Loved That Loved Not at First Sight? - Christopher Marlowe
"It lies not in our power to love or hate, / For will in us is overruled by fate" - These two lines are interesting. Relates to our world today, where our actions are ruled by so many guidelines, we may not always act as our hearts desire.
The Passionate Shepherd to his Love - Christopher Marlowe
Rhyme and meter create strong rhythm. This poem is very different from the previous Marlowe poem I read; this has a more lively and optimistic tone. It talks about love and its endless possibilities.
On Raglan Road - Patrick Kavanagh
Lots of enjambment in this poem, although I don't really understand its purpose. The lines of the poem are very long. Punctuation in this poem serve to escalate the mood of the lines.
A Broken Appointment - Thomas Hardy
I do not feel bad for the speaker even though he was stood other; on the contrary, I think that the speaker's self pity is sad. He seems to be dwelling on the past rather than moving on. The entire poem has a depressing mood and the speaker's tone is disappointed.
A Happy Man - Edwin Arlington Robinson
Although the title suggests happiness, the mood of the poem feels rather neutral and even sad. I think the speaker is reflecting on the past happiness. It seems that the speaker is dead ("Leave me to my quiet rest / In the region of the blest").. but I don't understand how he/she can be speaking from the grave.
In a Station of the Metro - Ezra Pound
This poem is two lines long, and I don't understand either lines.. The first line evokes a dark mood, as the faces in the crowd are painted like ghosts. In my mind, I have an extremely strange image regarding the poem: a fruit tree, except instead of fruits there are ghostly faces hanging on the branches. Strange.
This is Just to Say - William Carlos Williams
This is a fun poem. The enjambment cuts the line of the poems extremely short and creates lots of pauses. Enjambment acts to emphasize words in the lines of the poem.
Amidst The Flowers A Jug Of Wine - Li Po
Again, Li Po talks about wine / drinking in this poem. It's often difficult to analyze structure, punctuation etc. in translated poems, as it may not be the intent of the original writer. The mood of the poem is quite neutral; the speaker feels lonely as he drinks under the moonlight.
Knoxville Tennessee - Nikki Giovanni
Enjambment makes the poem feel like a list of things. There are lots of imagery, especially that of nature. Similar to the poem we read in class (it was about some state..), this poem focuses on promoting Knoxville through nature imagery and heartwarming descriptions.
Tarantella - Hilaire Belloc
First thought: reminds me of Nora Helmer and her tarantella dance! The rhyme and rhythm of the poem almost renders the poem lyrical. Enjambment emphasizes the rhythm. Mood is lighthearted and adventurous.
All the World's a Stage - William Shakespeare
Like many other poems, this Shakespeare piece explores the stages of life. Perhaps Shakespeare is making a reference to his playwrights through the title "stage"; life is like a stage, and we are like actors, each show has a climax but eventually ends.
"Hope" is the thing with feathers - Emily Dickinson
In this poem hope is compared to a thing with feathers, presumably a bird. However at the same time, the poet may be conveying the idea that hope is elusive. Comparison of hope to a bird may also signify that hope can truly propel us to newer and greater heights.
As I Grew Older - Langston Hughes
In the start of the poem, the speaker's dream is described as intense, bright light. However towards the end, contrast is created as the dream dies and everything becomes dark. Contrast in lighting emphasizes the downfall of the dream.
Mother to Son - Langston Hughes
The contrast between crystal stair and roughness create great imagery. Climbing stairs may be a metaphor for overcoming obstacles in life. I like how the poem is very rhythmic and the tone is confident. I don't, however, like the abbreviation of words (e.g. reachin', goin').
A Fairy Song - William Shakespeare
This poem was fun to read because of the meter and the rhyme, but I don't have a clue what the content is about..
I Am Not Yours - Sarah Teasdale
The tone of the poem is definitely longing. Imagery exemplifies the degree of love.
One Art - Elizabeth Bishop
The poem is filled with a detaching mood. The speaker begins my talking about loosing items. As the poem progresses the speaker begins to loose untouchable things. In this case, Bishop talks about losing friendship. It's interesting that Bishop considers loosing a form of art.
No man is an island - John Donne
I think the poet's intent is to show the whole is greater than the sum of parts. Again though, this poem feels more like a prose to me.
Bright Star - John Keats
The poet juxtaposes the pain and joy of love in this poem. Bright star may be a symbol of long lastingness; at the same time a star cannot be touched, but only admired from a distance. Perhaps the poet is suggesting that his love is within reach, but so far away.
Hot and Cold - Roald Dahl
I'm not sure if this poem is about infidelity. If it is, then this poem is very funny and witty. The poem portrays the innocence of childhood against adult affairs. Must be awkward for the mistress.. ;)
Another Reason Why I Don't Keep A Gun In The House - Billy Collins
I hope the poem is not comparing the music of Beethoven to the barking of dogs. If so, I am extremely offended as Beethoven is my favorite composer. Juxtaposition of barking and imagery of the performing orchestra gives the poem a chaotic mood.
Introduction To Poetry - Billy Collins
In this poem, Collins urges reader to simply enjoy poems, rather than tear them apart through analysis. Ironically enough, I am trying to dissect the poem as I read, and the theme of this poem goes against everything I've learnt in the years of English class. It's interesting, because I've often wondered whether authors and poets wish for their works to be analyzed in depth like we often do.
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening - Robert Frost
I really enjoy this poem's winter imagery. Perhaps the purpose of this poem is to show that we cannot always spend time to enjoy the different parts of life, as we must move on the keep up with the pace of things.
A Time to Talk - Robert Frost
Unlike the previous Frost poem, this poem expresses the leisurely pace of life. Perhaps Frost wants to stress the importance of balancing out the aspects of life; in the case of this poem, it's important to not neglect one's relationships with others because of work.
Still I Rise - Maya Angelou
This poem about rising above the ashes and defying odds is told in a neutral tone. The use of questions within the poem works to exemplify the speaker's statements. I especially enjoy the poet's use of wide vocabulary, such as "sassiness" and "sexiness".
Five Ways To Kill A Man - Edwin Brock
The poem begins with an allusion to the death of Christ. As the poem progresses, time also progresses, making references to gas chambers in WWII. Despite the gruesome imagery, the poem comes to a surprising end when the poet advertises to simply leave the man alone rather than kill him.
Be Glad Your Nose is on Your Face - Jack Prelutsky
Along with it's rhyme, this poem is an easy read and very lighthearted and funny. It's unlikely assumptions serve to remind us to appreciate ourselves.
Dreams - Langston Hughes
Similar to Emily Dickinson's poem where hope is the thing with feathers. In this case, dreams are compared to dreams. Again, the idea of dreaming being elusive is expressed. The rhyme is very loose, and the structure of the poem divides the different scenario of dreams.
If You Forget Me - Pablo Neruda
The poem is written in very simplistic language. There are lots of beautiful imagery that help express the beauty of human feelings. The tone is calm, yet the mood is rather emotional and exciting. I'm sure the original poem in Spanish is much more beautiful (or at least sounds nicer)
All That is Gold Does Not Glitter - John Ronald Reuel Tolkien
The ABAB rhyme gives the poem a lyrical feeling. Imagery of glittering gold, fire and light contrast with imagery of ashes, shallows and deep roots. It's a nice poem, but I don't really understand it.
Annabel Lee - Edgar Allan Poe
This poem talks about a woman who loved and died young. The rhyme scheme varies within each stanza, and the mood of the poem is longing. The narrator seems to loved Annabel Lee very much, almost so much to worship her. Repetition serves to assert the narrator's strong love for Annabel Lee. The simplistic language has a childish tone, perhaps to reflect the young love between the narrator and Annabel Lee.
Richard Cory - Edwin Arlington Robinson
The poem talks about a man, Richard Cory, who seems to have everything: money, education and physique. Yet the poem ends with a bang (pun intended!) when Richard Cory "put a bullet in his head". The first three stanzas sound envious, as they talk about the wealth of Richard Cory. The reason behind Richard Cory's suicide is unknown, perhaps the poet intends the reader to fill in the blanks regarding the unknown reason.
"Faith" is a fine invention - Emily Dickinson
In this poem, Dickinson again compares something unseen to an object. "Microscopes are prudent / In an Emergency" because we cannot simply rely on faith in times of extreme need, rather we need to see in order to believe. However, that does not mean faith is not "a fine invention".
A Very Short Song - Dorothy Parker
This poem is simplistic and easily understood. The ABAB rhyme scheme renders this heartbreaking poem rather lighthearted. The humorous language contrasts with the sad theme of heartbreak.
All You Who Sleep Tonight - Vikram Seth
The mood of this poem is somber, and the rhyme contributes to the calm tone. The first stanza contrasts with the second stanza, as the first deals with loneliness, while the second stanza attempts to comfort loneliness by saying that others are just as lonely.