the poetry of robert frost emily mullins n.
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The Poetry of Robert Frost Emily Mullins. Let’s Begin With a Review of Poetic Terms. Repetition: The repetition of sounds, syllables, words, elements of a preceding line, lines, and metrical patterns establishing cycles of expectation which are reinforced for emphasis as the poem continues.

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let s begin with a review of poetic terms
Let’s Begin With a Review of Poetic Terms
  • Repetition: The repetition of sounds, syllables, words, elements of a preceding line, lines, and metrical patterns establishing cycles of expectation which are reinforced for emphasis as the poem continues.
  • Rhyme: a type of echoing which uses the sound in the final accented vowels and all that follows of two or more words, but the preceding consonant sounds must differ, as in the words, bear and care. A close similarity of sound.
  • Assonance: Vowel rhymes with different consonant beginnings, such as date and fate.
  • Consonance: The close repetition of the same end consonants of stressed syllables with differing vowel sounds, such as boat and night, or the words drunk and milk.
  • Alliteration: Also called head rhyme or initial rhyme, the repetition of the initial sounds (usually consonants) of stressed syllables in neighboring words or at short intervals within a line or passage, usually at word beginnings
  • Meter: A measure of rhythmic quantity; the organized succession of groups of syllables at basically regular intervals in a line of poetry, according to definite metrical patterns.
  • Figurative Language: The use of words, phrases, symbols, and ideas in such as way as to evoke mental images and sense impressions. This is often characterized by certain poetic devices listed above.
robert frost 1874 1963
Robert Frost (1874-1963)
  • Four-time Pulitzer Prize winning American Poet
  • Robert Lee Frost (named after Southern General Robert E. Lee) was born on March 26th, 1874 in San Francisco, California to Isabelle Moodie, a teacher, and William Prescott Frost Jr., a teacher and journalist.
  • He was named Poet Laureate by JFK.
  • He had two books published in England, where he lived for some time.
  • He suffered devastating losses in his life including the untimely deaths of his sister, two of his children, and his wife.
  • His poetry is often conversational, rural, and simple, but is constructed into complex poems. He once said he chose “the old fashioned way to be new.”
  • He had social significance without becoming a political poet.
  • His words are often ironic, bittersweet, but also full of wonder and awe at the simplest of things. He wrote about the rural landscape, the people, vernacular, and culture of New England in traditional verse style, yet his poetry is often thought to be profound. He looks deeply at the metaphysical significance and the complex nature of the human mind and spirit.
  • Human nature in all her beauty and contradictions is discovered in Frost’s poetry.
before we get to the poem
Before we get to the poem…
  • Narrative: The narration of an event or story, stressing details of plot, incident, and action.
  • Persona: The speaker or voice of a literary work, i.e., who is doing the talking.
stopping by woods on a snowy evening
“Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”

  1 Whose woods these are I think I know.

              2 His house is in the village though;

              3 He will not see me stopping here

              4 To watch his woods fill up with snow.

              5 My little horse must think it queer

              6 To stop without a farmhouse near

              7 Between the woods and frozen lake

              8 The darkest evening of the year.

              9 He gives his harness bells a shake

            10 To ask if there is some mistake.

            11 The only other sound's the sweep

            12 Of easy wind and downy flake.

            13 The woods are lovely, dark and deep.

            14 But I have promises to keep,

            15 And miles to go before I sleep,

            16 And miles to go before I sleep.

let s look at the poem again
Let’s look at the poem again…

  1 Whose woods these are I think I know.

              2 His house is in the village though;

              3 He will not see me stopping here

              4 To watch his woods fill up with snow.

              5 My little horse must think it queer

              6 To stop without a farmhouse near

              7 Between the woods and frozen lake

              8 The darkest evening of the year.

              9 He gives his harness bells a shake

            10 To ask if there is some mistake.

            11 The only other sound's the sweep

            12 Of easy wind and downy flake.

            13 The woods are lovely, dark and deep.

            14 But I have promises to keep,

            15 And miles to go before I sleep,

            16 And miles to go before I sleep.

Questions to think/infer about while reading:

  • Who is the speaker?
  • What are the strongest images?
  • Whose story is this telling?
  • What questions does the speaker create? Is this a mystery?
  • What could the speaker be concealing/omitting? Why?
  • Whose woods are they? Is he concerned about the owner’s presence?
  • Where has the speaker come from and where is he going?
  • Continue looking at what the poetic devices due to add to the narrative aspect of the poem…
class activity
Class Activity
  • Working in groups of three, come up with a way of creating a story from this poem. You may make inferences about the speaker or any aspect of the poem, and the story can be told from any point of view. You may even personify the horse.
  • Then in your groups devise a way of depicting your story. It can be a concept for a music video (story board or a director’s vision), a comic strip, perhaps the intro to a movie (what would be the story line for the rest of the film?), a short story (Halloween is close-it can be scary!), or any other way you can think of being creative. Markers and paper are up front!
homework
Homework
  • Choose any of Frost’s poems, and come in tomorrow prepared to share the poetic devices you have discovered in the lines of your Frost poem, as well as any inferences you have made concerning the persona of the speaker or the narrative of the poem.
  • Make inferences about the speaker’s motivations and their character (internal and external conflicts, perspective, point of view, etc.). You will need to have evidence for those inferences in the words of the poem. You can make notes on the poem itself, draw a picture, journal about how it relates to you, or find another way of analyzing the poem’s meaning.
  • A few options are: “The Road Not Taken,” “Birches,” “Come In,” “Design,” “Mending Wall,” “Two Tramps in Mud Time,” and “Out, Out—”