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Poetry. ENG2D Block B Week 1 Ms. Westgate. Learning goals. To understand how memory impacts and inspires writers To understand that personal experience is only one source of inspiration

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ENG2D Block B

Week 1

Ms. Westgate

Learning goals
Learning goals

  • To understand how memory impacts and inspires writers

  • To understand that personal experience is only one source of inspiration

  • To familiarize ourselves with poetic devices so we may analyze the poetry we explore in terms of how they are crafted and what tools their creators utilized to invoke an emotional response and give meaning

  • To analyze a poem in terms of poetic devices, meaning, and conventions

Warm up poem
Warm up poem

  • Suli Breaks, Why I Hate School But Love Education


Minds on

The Role of Memories in Literature

Where do writers get their inspiration
Where do writers get their Inspiration?

  • Life experiences

  • Stories they hear or read

  • Observations

  • Events

  • Their imaginations

Do writer s only write from their experiences
Do Writer’s Only Write From Their Experiences?

  • Is every story Stephen King tells a reflection of his own life?

    • Did the writer experience everything they wrote about?

  • Of course not, however, they get their inspiration from their own experiences that are stored in memories

  • Memories are treasure troves for writers

    • Every story and character they create has roots in something the writer experienced whether virtually (through reading, watching, hearing other’s stories both fact and fiction)


  • Are the foundation for all literature

  • Poetry is one genre that is often used to express personal experiences and deep emotions more than any other genre

  • In this Module and the next, we are going to explore some forms of poetry that are particularly reflective of the poets experiences, emotions and memories

  • While you read the poems presented to you, ask yourself:

    • Is the poet speaking from personal experience?

    • Is the poet sharing their personal response to an event?

    • What role does memory play in the poem?

Poetry is
Poetry is

  • A literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style and rhythm; poems collectively or as a genre of literature

    Oxford English Dictionary

  • Although poetry is written and read, it is most powerful when it is read aloud

  • Poetry has been put to music and sung since the time of bards


  • Is a genre of literature

  • Has genres of its own like?

Concrete poetry

Prose poetry

Romantic poetry

Lyric poetry

Pastoral poetry

Slam poetry




Free verse





Narrative poetry

Blank Verse








And so on . . .


  • For definitions of the various subgenres of poetry go to: www.poetryfoundation.org

  • There are as many forms of poetry as there are emotions and feelings to express

  • We cannot possibly delve into every form during this course

    • So we will touch on a few

Poetic devices
Poetic devices

  • Go over and discuss the handout on poetic devices

  • Familiarize yourself with the common ones and refer to this handout as we analyze and create poems

  • Many of these devices, if not all, are used by authors of all forms of literature so they are important to know and understand as we analyze how skilled writers use them to create and enhance meaning, evoke emotion, and tell the stories in interesting, even provocative, ways

What form of poetry is this
What form of Poetry Is This?

"Dr. Afua Cooper." Who's Who in Black Canada, 2013. Web. 16 Sep 2013. <http://www.whoswhoinblackcanada.com/2011/04/19/dr-afua-cooper/>.

What is dub poetry
What is Dub Poetry?

  • Poetry of West Indian origin which originated out of dub music consisting of spoken word over reggae rhythms;

  • Generally performed without music

    • The rhythms is built into the poem through chanted speech with rhythmic accentuation and dramatic stylization of gesture

      "Dub poetry." En.wikipedia.org, 2013. Web. 16 Sep 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dub_poetry>.

  • Could you hear the reggae rhythm as Afua Cooper recited her poem?

The assignment
The Assignment

  • Read “Memories Have Tongue” by Afua Cooper

  • While you read it try to recite it with reggae rhythm as your beat

  • Identify the poetic devices Cooper utilizes

    • What affects do they have?

    • How do they enrich meaning?


  • In Part 1, we discussed and considered how the writer’s memories shape their poems and inspire them

  • We also looked at poetic devices and familiarized ourselves with them

  • In Part 2, we will consider how the reader’s own experiences and perspectives inform how they interpret a poem

    • Do your experiences, memories and perspective affect how you interpret a poem?

    • Can you be moved by a poem written from experiences that are very different from your own?

Discussion question
Discussion Question

  • How can you relate to a poem that is written from an opposing perspective?

  • Can we read and respond to a poem without our own bias getting in the way?

  • Are poems open to interpretation and is it okay that we take from a poem something different than what the writer is trying to convey?

  • How important is it to know the background of the writer when reading?

Case study lenore keeshig tobias
Case Study: Lenore Keeshig-Tobias

  • Read I Grew Uponce before reading about Keeshig-Tobias’ background

  • What do you learn about her from the poem?

"Publisher: Sister Vision Press (Open Library)."OpenLibrary.org, 2013. Web. 17 Sep 2013. <http://openlibrary.org/publishers/Sister_Vision_Press>.

Lenore keeshig tobias
Lenore Keeshig-Tobias

  • An interview with Keeshig-Tobias discussing her culture, her life and how they have influenced her writings

    • How do her memories and experiences influence her writing?

  • Re read the poem I Grew Up

    • How does knowing her background and perspective influence you as you read the poem?

    • Do you believe knowing the writer’s background is important? Why or why not?

What form of poem is i grew up
What form of poem is I Grew Up?

  • Is there a clear beginning, middle and end?

  • Does it rhyme?

  • Is there a pattern?

  • Is there a rhythm?

A narrative poem
A Narrative Poem

  • Tells a story (has a beginning, middle and end)

  • Is told by a narrator or character

  • May include several characters

  • Has a conflict: in short narrative poems, “the conflict tends to involve the emotional transformation of a single character”(Edel).

  • Has line breaks that contribute to meaning


A Narrative Poem

  • Has punctuation at the end of sentences

  • Enjambment – line breaks that do not coincide with sentence breaks

  • Has a persona – NOT THE AUTHOR – represents a fictitious character unique to the work

  • Uses symbols and metaphors

  • Uses powerful imagery

I grew up
I Grew Up

  • Who is telling the story? A narrator or a character?

  • What is the conflict?

  • How does it get resolved? Or does it?

  • What is the narrator like?

  • What symbols are present?

  • Identify some of the imagery

  • What is the theme or main idea?

  • What message does the narrator try to convey?

I grew up1
I Grew Up

  • Is a unique style of narrative poetry

  • It is a Native poem that deals with the issues of identity and native culture

  • They address the complexities around being Native in Canada

The assignment1
The Assignment

  • There are 2 parts:

    • Respond in complete sentences using concrete examples from the poem to the questions put forward

    • Create your own I Grew Up poem following the pattern of Keeshig-Tobias’ poem in terms of rhythm, line length, number of lines in the stanzas, number of stanzas, and the reversal in the refrain at the end

Part two of the assignment
Part TWO of the Assignment

  • Create your own narrative poem about growing up

    • Use Keeshig-Tobias’ poem as a model

    • Your lines should be about the same length

    • It should have the same number of stanzas

    • It should have a refrain which is slightly inverted at the end

    • You can rhyme if you like

    • You may use humour

    • It must have a beginning, middle, and end

    • It must have imagery and symbolism


  • "Dub poetry." En.wikipedia.org, 2013. Web. 16 Sep 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dub_poetry>.

  • "Dr. Afua Cooper." Who's Who in Black Canada, 2013. Web. 16 Sep 2013. <http://www.whoswhoinblackcanada.com/2011/04/19/dr-afua- cooper/>.

  • Edel, Ryan. "What is a Narrative Poem?." 2010. Web. 17 Sep 2013. <http://ifp.12writing.com/2010/01/testing-1-2-writing-workshops- online.html>.

  • "Keeshig-Tobias also storyteller." nurun.com, 2013. Web. 17 Sep 2013. <http://www.owensoundsuntimes.com/2012/02/21/keeshig-tobias- also-storyteller>.

  • "Publisher: Sister Vision Press (Open Library)."OpenLibrary.org, 2013. Web. 17 Sep 2013. <http://openlibrary.org/publishers/Sister_Vision_Press>.

  • Suli Breaks. Digital image 2013. Web. 4 Mar 2014 <http://mariamuir.com/why-i- hate-school-but-love-education/suli-breaks-1/>.