Questions tagged [poetry]

This tag should be used on questions about poetry in general or about any specific poem. Please use this tag with the appropriate author tag, and, if applicable, the language tag (such as [french-literature].

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4
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0answers
19 views

What does it mean for Venus to 'read my case' in Drummond of Hawthornden's madrigal?

I came across a madrigal by William Drummond of Hawthornden (laird of the same) yesterday. It's an astonishingly beautiful poem, but I'm having trouble making sense of some of the phrases and ...
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28 views

What is a central theme in Robert Frost's “After Apple-Picking,” and how is it revealed in the poem?

Robert Frost's After Apple-Picking, published in North of Boston (1914) is, at least at the surface level, a poem about harvesting apples and sleep. But what is actually its central theme and how is ...
4
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1answer
35 views

To which 'Argive queen' was Ben Jonson referring in his verse letter to the Countess of Rutland?

I came across a couplet today in Ben Jonson's verse letter "Epistle to Elizabeth Countess of Rutland" which I'm still trying to understand: How many equal with the Argive queen, Have beauty ...
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74 views

Meaning of capitalized nouns in a Lord Byron poem

I am in reference to Lord Byron's Childe Harold's Pilgrimage (see: wikipedia article). Here is the opening stanza of the work (TO IANTHE): Not in those climes where I have late been straying, ⁠Though ...
12
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1answer
2k views

Why is London 'the town which Brutus sought by dreams'?

In his short poem which begins 'Tagus, farewell', the English poet Sir Thomas Wyatt wrote of his longing to return to an unnamed city. For anyone familiar with the rudiments of either Wyatt's ...
4
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60 views

Why a sorrowing heart is called as “Sultan” and a stone heart is called as “burial site” in this verse of Saint Kabir?

I came up to this verse of great Indian poet Saint Kabir बिरहा बुरहा जिनि कहौ, बिरहा है सुलतान। जिस घटि बिरह न संचरै, सो घट सदा मसान॥ This page gives the English translation of that verse as Do not ...
22
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2answers
3k views

Bilbo’s song of Eärendil in “The Fellowship of the Ring”

In The Fellowship of the Ring, the character Bilbo Baggins recites a poem beginning with these lines: Eärendil was a mariner that tarried in Arvernien; he built a boat of timber felled in Nimbrethil ...
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18 views

Understanding the plotline of “The Smile” by Ted Hughes

I'm reading Ted Hughes' "The Smile" (text version), and I'm trying to understand its plotline. More specifically: what's the nature of the scenes wherein the poem's protagonist, the smile, ...
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1answer
93 views

What does stanza 4 of Defeat by Kahlil Gibran mean?

I love Defeat (by Kahlil Gibran) but I don't understand these lines in the fourth stanza of this poem: Defeat, my Defeat, my bold companion, You shall hear my songs and my cries and my silences, And ...
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2answers
698 views

Who introduced the sonnet to English literature? Wyatt or Shakespeare?

Who brought sonnet to English literature? Thomas Wyatt or William Shakespeare? Their contributions to English literature: Shakespeare wrote a book that contains 154 sonnets, but I couldn't find ...
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1answer
155 views

In how many ways can you interpret this haiku poem? [closed]

What may be the possible (hidden) interpretations of this poem (written by me), which uses a form of Japanese poetry called 'haiku'? a filled bow, stretched with zest- the smile flies How would the ...
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1answer
21 views

Interpretation of “ Time as a stuff can be wasted” in Sandburg's A Father to His Son

In the poem A Father to His Son, the poet says, "Time as a stuff can be wasted'. In most of the summaries of this poem, it is mentioned that the poet says that time can be wasted as if the poet ...
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1answer
82 views

Who is Tich Miller? What has happened to her? Why was this poem written about her?

My literature homework about poetry involves the poem 'Tich Miller' of Wendy Cope. it is as follows: Tich Miller wore glasses with elastoplast-pink frames and had one foot three sizes larger ...
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32 views

Outline the symbolism of “The astronaut in Isolation” by Rosalind Morris

“The astronaut in Isolation” by Rosalind Morris is a poem that was published on Daily Maverick on 30 April 2020. It's a new poem and there is no interpretation of this anywhere on the web. I would ...
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28 views

Is Williams's This Is Just to Say an imagist poem, an objectivist poem or neither?

The Wikipedia article about the short poem "This Is Just to Say" claims the text is an imagist poem without backing up that claim. Williams contributed to the anthology Des Imagistes, published in ...
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3answers
134 views

Two Interpretations of Robert Herrick's “To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time”

In his "To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time", Robert Herrick concluded his carpe diem plea with: For having lost but once your prime, You may forever tarry. There seems to be two ways to ...
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2answers
147 views

Edgar Allan Poe's “Alone”

The short poem "Alone" by Edgar Allan Poe was written in 1829 or 1830, when he was a young man, but only published in 1875 long after his death. Its full text is as follows: From childhood’s hour I ...
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1answer
76 views

What are the “animal heads of the flowers” in Allen Ginsberg's Transcription of Organ Music?

Here is the original text: The rambler vine climbed up the cottage post, the leaves in the night still where the day had placed them, the animal heads of the flowers where they had ...
3
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1answer
123 views

Does “the” only serve to preserve metre in “The Tyger”?

William Blake's poem “The Tyger” from Songs of Experience utilizes "the" in an interesting manner in two separate couplets of the 4th stanza, lines 9 and 11: What the hammer? what the chain, In ...
2
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1answer
57 views

What does the last line of Daniel Borzutzky's “Managed Diversity” mean?

I wonder if anybody could help me to understand the last line of the poem “Managed Diversity”, written by Daniel Borzutzky: The global economy brightens my room with the surveillance of my rotten ...
3
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1answer
33 views

“By the lives of all who’d come to console and assist the stricken” What does it mean?

I was reading the poem "The Miracle at Sea" by Shmuel HaNagid (translated from Hebrew by Peter Cole), and I came across a passage that really confused me. This is the second stanza of the poem: By ...
7
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1answer
117 views

Why do I have a different version of “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”?

The first stanza of Robert Frost's "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" reads as follows in its original publication in New Hampshire (1923): Whose woods these are I think I know. His house is ...
4
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2answers
144 views

Who is being referenced in the opening line of “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”?

The first stanza of Robert Frost's "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" goes like this: Whose woods these are I think I know. His house is in the village though; He will not see me stopping ...
4
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1answer
125 views

Origin of the title of “La Dragontea” by Lope de Vega?

Why Lope de Vega titled his poem La Dragontea, what were the prerequisites? I tried to search the etymology of this word but was not successful. Yes, I know that Chinese Dragon Tea exists, but I ...
7
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138 views

Any significance to the “Dutch clock” and “Chinese plate” in Eugene Field's “The Duel”?

I just learned from an answer to an ID question about the poem "The Duel", or "The Gingham Dog and the Calico Cat", in which Eugene Field describes a vicious fight between two stuffed animals as told ...
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0answers
56 views

Trying to remember a poem that I only have a snippet of

I'm trying to find some lost poems that were favorites of mine in high school. This one, I only have one line that I remember clearly. Not much to go on, I know, but if anyone recognizes it, I would ...
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1answer
76 views

Author and title of poem: “Follow, follow me into the South, …”

Follow, follow me into the South,         And if you are brave and wise I'll buy you laughter for your mouth,         Sorrow for your eyes. I'll buy you laughter, wild and sweet,         ...
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0answers
32 views

How is inner conflict presented in the poem “Tissue”?

We haven't studied this poem in clas due to the COVID-19 outbreak and schools shutting down, but we have made annotations for the poem. However nothing about conflict came up. Have you got anyideas ...
3
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0answers
65 views

Marianne Moore’s ‘Four Quartz Crystal Clocks’

Marianne Moore’s poem ‘Four Quartz Crystal Clocks’ (1940) was first published in The Kenyon Review 2:3, pp. 284–285, and collected in What Are Years (1941). Here's the first stanza (of seven): ...
3
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0answers
64 views

Understanding two lines from “The Wound-Dresser” by Walt Whitman

Among the hospital poems, "The Wound-Dresser" by Walt Whitman is one of the best and finest. I wonder if anybody here can help me to understand two lines of this piece. But in silence, in dreams’ ...
2
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1answer
107 views

To whom is Anne Bronte's “A Reminiscence” addressed?

Anne Bronte's short poem "A Reminiscence", originally published under the name Acton Bell in the book Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell (1846) published jointly with her two sisters, is addressed ...
2
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1answer
175 views

What is the rhythm of the line 'I want a hero, an uncommon want'?

What is the rhythm of the following line from the start of Byron's Don Juan? I want a hero: an uncommon want, Is it iambic or trochaic? It's a tetrameter and not a pentameter that I am aware of. ...
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2answers
70 views

Can stream of consciousness have punctuation/structure?

Our English teacher showed us a poem about someone trying to organize thoughts/feelings that haunt them into a list, and revising the list as they go. She claims that this style of writing is stream ...
1
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1answer
322 views

Ezra Pound's “In a Station of the Metro”

Ezra Pound wrote a very short poem entitled "In a Station of the Metro". It is, in full: The apparition of these faces in the crowd: Petals on a wet, black bough. What kind of meaning and ...
4
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1answer
90 views

Does anyone recognise this poem - from my mum (90)?

Once upon a summer in the hills by the river Was a deep green forest where the wild things grow. There were paths as ...?....? There were ...?...?...? And a thousand little spaces where the ...
2
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1answer
63 views

What game are they playing in Elizabeth Moody’s ‘The Temptation’?

Here’s an extract from ‘The Temptation; or, Satan in the Country’ by Elizabeth Moody: The verdant table Satan spy’d, And took his seat by Lydia’s side; Soon as he hovers o’er her hand, Lydia ...
3
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1answer
154 views

Michael Field’s ‘To Christina Rossetti’

‘Michael Field’ was a joint pen-name used by Katharine Bradley and Edith Cooper. Their elegy ‘To Christina Rossetti’ (1896) was written after Rossetti’s death in 1894. Lady, we would behold thee ...
2
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1answer
84 views

Keats' views on beauty

In the poem Endymion: A poetic romance (1818), the first stanza of Book I (beginning, "A thing of beauty is a joy for ever") focuses a great deal on beauty where Keats presents some of his views on ...
2
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1answer
72 views

Are “simple sheep” a biblical reference in Keats' “Endymion”?

In the poem Endymion: A poetic romance (1818), the first stanza of Book I (beginning, "A thing of beauty is a joy for ever") contains the following passage:-                                       ...
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1answer
96 views

Why “a creeper climbs” in Our Casuarina Tree by Toru Dutt?

In the poem "Our Casuarina Tree" by Toru Dutt, why has she written 'a creeper climbs...'? Instead, she might have written 'a climber climbs'! Does it imply anything?
2
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1answer
67 views

Anne Bronte's “The Penitent”

Anne Bronte's poem "The Penitent", originally published under the name Acton Bell in the book Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell (1846) published jointly with her two sisters, reads as follows: ...
3
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2answers
879 views

What does Wordsworth mean by “A pagan suckled in a creed outworn”?

I have two questions regarding this sonnet by William Wordsworth, first published in 1807: The world is too much with us; late and soon, Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers: Little we ...
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2answers
212 views

What's the meaning of this phrase in The Invitation

In Oriah Mountain Dreamer's poem The Invitation, the sixth paragraph is: It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to ...
3
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1answer
377 views

Explain the third stanza of Donne's “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning”?

This is the third stanza of John Donne's "A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning": Moving of th' earth brings harms and fears, Men reckon what it did, and meant; But trepidation of the spheres, ...
3
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1answer
46 views

What is the meaning of Brodsky’s saying in the context of Sagan & Schneider’s book “Into the Cool”?

I came across this paragraph while reading Into the Cool by Sagan and Schneider and I was intrigued by a reference to Joseph Brodsky’s poetry but I can’t seem to understand what it means exactly: ...
4
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1answer
73 views

A slightly different interpretation in the poem “Boat Stealing” by Wordsworth

I have recently annotated this poem and when looking online, I have found that my interpretation of the poem in some aspects is a bit different to most others. I just want to make sure that my ...
3
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1answer
102 views

Meaning of “tally” in Whitman's “When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d”

From "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d" by Walt Whitman: To the tally of my soul, Loud and strong kept up the gray-brown bird, With pure deliberate notes spreading filling the night. ...
5
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1answer
2k views

Meaning of “cloudless at dawn” and connection with Shakespeare's head?

I was reading one of the master-pieces by Stephen Spender, "An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum". Following are the starting lines of the second of four octaves: Our sour cream walls, ...
0
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1answer
95 views

What figure of speech does “alive enough to have strength to die” by Hardy contain?

The poem "Neutral Tones" by Thomas Hardy was written in 1867 and published in the 1898 collection Wessex Poems and Other Verses. It contains the stanza: The smile on your mouth was the deadest ...
2
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1answer
529 views

Theme of William Wordsworth's poem “We Are Seven”?

"We Are Seven" is a poem by William Wordsworth and this poem depicts the innocent nature of a child who just does not want to understand that her siblings have passed away of natural causes and ...

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