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  • Uploaded on proudly presents. Introduction to Poetry. Poetry is the most misunderstood form of writing. It is also arguably the purest form of writing. Poetry is a sense of the beautiful; characterized by a love of beauty and expressing this through words. .

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Pakfaizal web id proudly presents

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Introduction to Poetry

Poetry is the most misunderstood form of writing. It is also arguably the purest form of writing. Poetry is a sense of the beautiful; characterized by a love of beauty and expressing this through words.

Poetry is not easily defined. Often it takes the form of verse, but not all poetry has this structure. Poetry is a creative use of words which, like all art, is intended to stir an emotion in the audience. Poetry generally has some structure that separates it from prose.

Robert Frost's

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim

Because it was grassy and wanted wear,

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I marked the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way

I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

Eve Merriam’s metaphor 

Morning isa new sheet of paperfor you to write on.

Whatever you want to say,all day,until nightfolds it upand files it away.

The bright words and the dark wordsare goneuntil dawnand a new dayto write on.


ALLAH, we thank Thee for the night

And for the pleasant morning light

For rest and food and loving care,

And all that makes the world so fair.

Help us to do the things we should,

To be to others kind and good.

In all we do, in all we say,

To grow more loving everyday.


Say, Allah is ONE,

Like HIM there is none.

No son or daughter has HE,

Nor born to any is HE.

All things bright and beautiful,

All creatures so, so wonderful.

All things, big and small,

Allah alone made them all.

Elements of poetry

  • Some important elements of poetry are:

  • Figurative language

  • Imagery

  • Rhythm

  • Rhyme and alliteration

  • Forms of poetry

  • tone

Simile a comparison made between two objects of different kinds which have, however, at least one point in common (Wren & Martin, 1981:480).

The words indicating simile are: like, as, so, appear, seem and more than.

O my love, is like a red, red rose,

That’s newly sprung in June.

O my love is like the melody

That’s sweetly played in tune.

(Robert Burns)

Emily Dickinson’s There is no frigate like a book

There is no frigate like a book

To take us lands away,

Nor any coursers like a page

Of prancing poetry:

Note: frigate=kapal perang gerak cepat, courses=kuda2 pelari cepat, prancing=berjingkrak2


Metaphor is an implied simile. It does not, like the simile, state one thing is like another or acts as another, but takes that for granted and proceeds as if two things were one (Wren & Martin 1981:489).

Robert Herrick’s a meditation for his mistress (kekasih) .

You are a tulip seen today

But, dearest, of so short a stay(tak berumur panjang)

That were you grow scarce man can say

You are a lovely July-Flower,

Yet one rude wind or ruffling shower(hujan gerimis yang mengganggu)

Will force you hence, and in an hour.

Personification is the attribution of personal nature or character to inanimate objects or abstract entities.

  • The old train crept along the narrow path

  • Flames ate the house

  • That leaves look pale, dreading (takut oleh)the winter’s near (Shakespeare)


figure of speechin which some absent or nonexistent person or thing is addressed in a dialogue or conversation as if present and capable of understanding.

John Donne’s Holy Sonnet

Death, be not proud, though some have called thee (you)

Mighty and dreadful, for you art(are) not so.



Is a statement which is made emphatic by overstatement


  • why, man, if the River were dry, I am able to fill it with tears.

  • For a falling in love couple the attack of tsunami is just like a splash of water.

  • All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten the smell of bloods in this little hand.


An apparent contradiction that is nevertheless somehow true (Perrine :1974:649)


1.and death shall be no more: death thou shall die

2. The world’s laziest workaholic.

3.Silent scream


Is a part is used to designate the whole.

  • He has many mouth to feed ”ia memberi makan banyak mulut”

  • A hundred wings(birds) flashed by.


Something that means more than what it is (Perrine: 1974:628)

Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening

Whose woods these are I think I know.His house is in the village though;He will not see me stopping hereTo watch his woods fill up with snow.My little horse must think it queerTo stop without a farmhouse nearBetween the woods and frozen lakeThe darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shakeTo ask if there is some mistake.The only other sound's the sweepOf easy wind and downy flake.The woods are lovely, dark and deep.But I have promises to keep,And miles to go before I sleep,And miles to go before I sleep.


*harness=pakaian kuda


One syllable: I, go

Two syllables: sym-bol, slen-der

Three syllables: yes-ter-day, re-vol-ver

Elements of syllable recitation:

Loudness (keras-lembut suara)

Duration (panjang-pendek suara)

e.g: I will neeeeeeeever do it again.

It soooooo awesome!

It read it whoooooooooole night

Timbre (kualitas suara)


U ------

Good night,

U -----

Fair one;

U ------

The day

U -----

Is done

b. Dimeter

U --- U _____

Give me one word

----- U -------

And no more;

U ---- U -----

If so be, this

------ U -------

Makes you poor,

c. Trimeter

U --- U ----- U ---- U

When I was one and twen- ty

U ---- U ----- U -------

I heard a wise man say,

U ----- U ------ U ----- U

Give crowns and pounds and gui neas

U ----- U ----- U ------

But not your heart a- way

d. Tetrameter

U ---- U ---- U ------ U ------

Some say the world will end in fire

U ----- U ----------

Some say in ice

U ----- U ---- ------ U ------ U -------

From what I ’ve tes ted of de-sire

U --- U ---- U --- U ----

I hold with those who fa vour fire

e. Pentameter

U ---- U ---- U ---- U ----- U -----

That time of year thou mayst in me behold

U --- U ---- U ---- U ----- U ------

When ye llow leaves , or none, or few, do hang

U --- U --- U ---- U --- U ----

Upon those boughs which shake againts the cold,

U --- U --- U ---- U ---- U ---

Bare ruin - ed choirs where late the sweet birds sang

The basic unit of poetry is the line. It serves the same function as the sentence in prose, although most poetry maintains the use of grammar within the structure of the poem. Most poems have a structure in which each line contains a set amount of syllables; this is called meter. Lines are also often grouped into stanzas.

The stanza in poetry is equivalent or equal to the paragraph in prose. Often the lines in a stanza will have a specific rhyme scheme. Some of the more common stanzas are:

Couplet: a two line stanza

Triplet: a three line stanza

Quatrain: a four line stanza

Cinquain: a five line stanza

Meter is the measured arrangement of words in poetry, the rhythmic patternof a stanza, determined by the kind and number of lines. Meter is an organized way to arrange stressed/accented syllables and unstressed/unaccented syllables.

Whose woods / these are / I think /I know

Rhyme is when the endings of the words sound the same. Read the poem with me out loud.

Dust of Snow

by Robert Frost

The way a crow

Shook down on me

The dust of snow

From a hemlock tree

Has given my heart

A change of mood

And save some part

Of a day I had rued.

Rhyme scheme is the pattern of rhyming words at the end of each line. Not all poetry has a rhyme scheme. They are not hard to identify, but you must look carefully at which words rhyme and which do not.

Dust of Snow

by Robert Frost

The way a crow

Shook down on me

The dust of snow

From a hemlock tree

Has given my heart

A change of mood

And save some part

Of a day I had rued.

Poems of more than one stanza often repeat the same rhyme scheme in each stanza.









Repetition is the repeating of a sound, word, or phrase for emphasis.


Inside the house (I get ready)Inside the car (I go to school)Inside the school(I wait for the bell to ring)

Whenever you describe something by comparing it with something else, you are using figurative language. Figurative language is any language that goes beyond the literal meaning of words in order to furnish new effects or fresh insights into an idea or a subject. The most common figures of speech are simile, metaphor, and alliteration. Figurative language is used in poetry to compare two things that are usually not thought of as being alike.

A something else, you are using simile is a figure of speech in which two essentially unlike things are compared, often in a phrase introduced by like or as.

The clouds looked like cotton candy.

Grandpa was asstubborn as amule

Tom's head is ashard as arock.

A something else, you are using metaphor is a figure of speech in which an implied comparison is made between two unlike things that actually have something important in common.

Clouds are cotton candy.

Grandpa was a mule.

Tom is a rock.

They are fluffy.

They are stubborn.

They are hard.

Alliteration is the repetition of the something else, you are using same sounds or of the same kinds of sounds at the beginning of words or in stressed syllables, as in "on scrolls of silver snowy sentences"(Hart Crane). Modern alliteration is predominantly consonantal. To find an alliteration, you must look the repetitions of the same consonant sound through out a line.

Silvery snowflakes fall silently

Softly sheathing all with moonlight

Until sunrise slowly shows

Snow softening swiftly.












Now you try the one in your packet.

Imagery something else, you are using is an appeal to the senses. The poet describes something to help you to see, hear, touch, taste, or smell the topic of the poem.


The fog comes on little cat feet.

It sits looking over harbor and city

on silent haunches and then moves on.

Carl Sandburg




Now do the poem in your packet.

An something else, you are using exaggerated statement used to heighten effect is a hyperbole. It is not used to mislead the reader, but to emphasize a point.

I’ve told you a million times not to leave the dirty glass on the table.

The exaggeration in the number of times.

In your packets, write two more hyperbole. Have your partner check them.

An something else, you are using idiom is a phrase where the words together have a meaning that is different from the dictionary definitions of the individual words. This can make idioms hard for students to understand.

A day late and a dollar short.

 This idiom means

it is too little, too late.

Write two more examples of idioms to share with the class.

The formation or use of words such as something else, you are using buzz or murmur that imitate the sounds associated with the objects or actions they refer to is called an alliteration. It is a word or a grouping of words that imitatesthe sound it is describing, such as animal noises like "oink" or "meow", or suggesting its source object (these are the more important ones), such as "boom", "click", "bunk", "clang", "buzz", or "bang".

SOUND OF NATURE something else, you are using

by Marie Josephine Smith

Ticking, tucking.Head is rocking.Tippy toeing.

Quietly.Snap, crack.Crushing branch.Helter, shelter.Run for shelter.Pitter, patter.Rain starts to fall.Gathering momentum.Becomes a roar.Thunder booms.

A figure of speech, which gives the something else, you are using qualities of a person to an animal, an object, or an idea is called personification. It is a comparison, which the author uses to show something in an entirely new light, to communicate a certain feeling or attitude towards it and to control the way a reader perceives it.

A brave handsome tree fell with a creaking rending cry.

The author is giving a tree the human quality of bravery and the ability ot cry.

Free verse something else, you are using is just what it says it is - poetry that is written without proper rules about form, rhyme, rhythm, and meter. In free verse the writer makes his/her own rules. The writer decides how the poem should look, feel, and sound.

Winter Poem something else, you are using

By Nikki Giovanni

once a snowflake fell

on my brow and i loved

it so much and i kissed

it and it was happy and called its cousins

and brothers and a web

of snow engulfed me then

i reached to love them all

and i squeezed them and they became

a spring rain and i stood perfectly

still and was a flower

The simplicity of the something else, you are using limerick quite possibly accounts for its extreme longevity. It consists of five lines with the rhyme scheme a a b b a. The first, second, and fifth lines are trimeter, a verse with three measures, while the third and fourth lines are dimeter, a verse with two measures. Often the third and fourth lines are printed as a single line with internal rhyme.

Old Man with a Beard

Edward Lear

There was an Old Man with a beard,

Who said, 'It is just as I feared!

Two Owls and a Hen,

Four Larks and a Wren,

Have all built their nests in my beard!'






A something else, you are using narrative poem, often of folk origin and intended to be sung, consisting of simple stanzas and usually having a refrain.

The Ballade Of The Mistletoe Bough by Ellis Parker Butler

I am standing under the mistletoe,And I smile, but no answering smile repliesFor her haughty glance bids me plainly knowThat not for me is the thing I prize;Instead, from her coldly scornful eyes,Indifference looks on my barefaced guile;She knows, of course, what my act implies—But look at those lips! Do they hint a smile?

I stand here, eager, and beam and glow, something else, you are using And she only looks a refined surpriseAs clear and crisp and as cold as snow,And as—Stop! I will never criticize!I know what her cold glance signifies;But I’ll stand just here as I am awhileTill a smile to my pleading look replies—But look at those lips! Do they hint a smile?

Just look at those lips, now! I claim they showA spirit unmeet under Christmas skies;I claim that such lips on such maidens oweA—something—the custom justifies;I claim that the mistletoe rule appliesTo her as well as the rank and file;We should meet these things in a cheerful guise—But look at those lips! Do they hint a smile?

Some might consider the study of poetry old fashioned, yet even in our hurried lives we are surrounded by it: children's rhymes, verses from songs, trite commercial jingles, well written texts. Any time we recognize words as interesting for sound, meaning or construct, we note poetics.