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Jazz Fantasia. By Carl Sandburg. Lyric Poetry. This poem, like all the other poems we have read so far, is lyric poetry Lyric poetry is Heavy on poetic sound devices Uses a lot of figurative language Focuses on capturing emotions and imagery Does NOT tell a story.

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Jazz Fantasia

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Jazz Fantasia

By Carl Sandburg

Lyric Poetry

  • This poem, like all the other poems we have read so far, is lyric poetry

  • Lyric poetry is

    • Heavy on poetic sound devices

    • Uses a lot of figurative language

    • Focuses on capturing emotions and imagery

    • Does NOT tell a story

Poems that tell a story are called narrative poetry…

  • Narrative poems

  • Contain either simple or complicated plots

  • Have characters

  • Often contain dialog

  • Use all the devices and elements of prose stories

  • Narrative poems are still written in verse, not sentences and paragraphs

So… “Jazz Fantasia” is a lyric poem

  • It conveys an image

  • Uses many sound and poetic devices such as alliteration and assonance

  • Uses a lot of figurative language

  • Does NOT tell a story

Let’s Take a look at the poem:

Sandburg is encouraging the jazz musicians to play their music…

Drum on your drums, batter on your banjoes,

sob on the long cool winding saxophones.

Go to it, O jazzmen.

This is called an apostrophe… not like the punctuation. In poetry, an apostrophe is a direct address, directly talking to someone or something by name.

Stanza #2

Sling your knuckles on the bottoms of the happy

tin pans, let your trombones ooze, and go husha-

husha-hush with the slippery sand-paper.

“Slippery sand-paper” is an oxymoron. An oxymoron is a pair of words that are used together but are opposites. Like “jumbo shrimp”

Stanza #3

Moan like an autumn wind high in the lonesome treetops,

moan soft like you wanted somebody terrible, cry like a

and scratch each other's eyes in a clinch tumbling down

racing car slipping away from a motorcycle cop, bang-bang!

you jazzmen, bang altogether drums, traps, banjoes, horns,

tin cans — make two people fight on the top of a stairway

the stairs.

This stanza uses similes to help bring the music alive.

The people fighting on the stairs is a metaphor. Why?

Stanza #4

Can the rough stuff . . . now a Mississippi steamboat pushes

up the night river with a hoo-hoo-hoo-oo . . . and the green

on the humps of the low river hills . . . go to it, O jazzmen.

lanterns calling to the high soft stars . . . a red moon rides

  • This stanza is rich with imagery. The steamboat, the green lanterns, the red moon and the river hills all help to create a picture in the reader’s mind.

  • These gentle images help to show the softer and smoother sound jazz can have, as opposed to the loud, harsh sounds captured in the previous stanza.

So… what is the theme of this poem?

  • Jazz music is beautiful and diverse. It can be pleasant and soothing or rough and exciting.

  • What literary elements does Sandburg use to convey this theme?

  • 1.

  • 2.

  • 3.

If you were asked to write an essay that defines the theme of this poem and then discuss the manner in which the author conveys the theme, how might you begin?

Ways to begin intros…

  • A general statement:

  • “Poets use many different poetic elements to convey their message or theme.”

  • A question:

  • “What is the most effective way to share a theme or message with a reader when writing a poem?”

  • A shocking statement.

  • “Many people hate poetry, but they should at least appreciate the methods and elements used to write a poem”

The LAST sentence in your intro should be your thesis.

  • In his free verse poem “Jazz Fantasia,” Carl Sandburg uses imagery, onomatopoeia and form to convey the theme that jazz is a beautiful genre of music that can be both soothing and exciting.

Next… you would have a paragraph on each element…

  • Be sure to have a topic sentence.

  • Use specific examples from the poem.

  • You must analyze each example.

  • You should have three examples that you analyze in each paragraph.

Lastly, you would have a conclusion…

  • Restate your thesis.

  • Do not simply copy your thesis. You must reword it!

  • Don’t introduce any new material!

  • Sum up your points.

  • Come to a conclusion!

But you don’t have to write an essay yet….

  • Tonight, you just have to write a paragraph, with a clear topic sentence including TAG, that characterizes and analyzes Sandburg’s diction.

  • The paragraph must be handwritten on looseleaf.

  • It should have at least three pieces of evidence that you ANALYZE!!

  • It should end in a clincher sentence that returns to your main idea.

  • It’s due at the beginning of class on Wednesday!

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