Myles Hilbert, Poetry Unit Lit Term Cards
Repetition of initial consonant soundsExample: “bugles blowin” in “Danny Deever” by Rudyard Kipling is an example of alliteration.
A brief and indirect reference to a person, place, thing or idea of historical, cultural, literary or political significance.Example: “knight-at-arms” in “La Belle Dame Sans Merci” by John Keats is an example of allusion because that was a term used in their culture in that certain time period.
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Repetition of a vowel sound within two or more words in close proximityExample: The phrase, “continue cutting” is an example of assonance because the o and u sound in the poem “Reapers” by Jean Toomer.
An idea or feeling that a word invokes in addition to its literal or primary meaningExample: The word “Universe” in the poem by Stephen Crane, invokes a feeling that makes me feel very small compared to everything else.
Repetition of a consonant sound within two or more words in close proximity.
Example: In the poem, “Reapers” by Jean Toomer, “steel on stones” is an example of consonance because the t sound after both of the s sound is repeated.
The dictionary definition of a wordExample: hag·gard?ha??rd/adjective1.
looking exhausted and unwell, especially from fatigue, worry, or suffering.
A writer’s or speaker’s choice of wordsExample: In the poem “Theme for English B”, by Langston Hughes, the very personal word choice like I and adding the age, gives the poem its own meaning.
A figure of speech that uses exaggeration to express strong emotion, make a point, or evoke humorExample: “I felt the life sliding out of me” is an extreme exaggeration, or hyperbole, in the poem “Making a Fist”, by Naomi Shihab Nye.
Description that appeals to the senses (sight, sound, smell, touch, taste)Example: “The sound of steel on stones”, is an example using the sense sound, that was written by Jean Toomer in the poem “Reapers”
A comparison of two unlike things without using “like” or “as”Example: The poem “Making a Fist” by Naomi Shihab Nye, uses the metaphore “My stomach was a melon split wide inside my skin.
A word that imitates the sound it represents.Example: Boom and Crash are examples of onomatopoeia.
A figure of speech in which an object or animal is given human feelings, thoughts, qualities or attitudesExample: In the poem by Stephen Crane personification is used when the universe is able to talk which is a human quality.
Repeated use of sounds, words, or ideas for effect and emphasisExample: The word “we” in the poem “We Real Cool” by Gwendolyn Brooks is repeated 8 times which puts an emphasis on the word.
Correspondence of sound between words or the endings of words, especially when these are used at the ends of lines of poetry.Example: In the English sonnets like the ones by William Shakespeare, the rhyme scheme is ABAB CDCD EFEF GG.
Pattern of stressed and unstressed syllablesExample: In English sonnets like the ones by William Shakespeare, each line has 10 syllables which is an example of a steady rhythm.
A comparison using “like” or “as”Example: “My mistresses eyes are nothing like the sun.” is an example of simile using like or as in the “Sonnet 130” by William Shakespeare.
A term used for the author, speaker, or the person whose perspective (real or imagined) is being advanced in a speech or piece of writingExample: In “Theme for English B”, the speaker is Langston Hughes, the author, who is writing his theme.
Something that represents something elseExample: The fist in Naomis Shihab Nye’s poem “Making a Fist” is a symbol of holding on through life’s journeys.
Central idea of a work of literatureExample: The theme in the poem by Stephen Crane is existence.
An interpretive statement articulating the central meaning or message of a textExample: Even if you are cool, you may not make the correct and best decisions. That is the thematic statement for “We Real Cool” by Gwendolyn Brooks.
A writer’s attitude toward his or her subject matter revealed through diction, figurative language, and organization on the sentence and global levels.Example: The tone in “La Belle Dame Sans Merci” by John Keats goes from really joyfully to very Erie after the dream is explained.
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