Poetry Terms (8th Grade)

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Last updated: November 27, 2019

alliteration
repetition of initial consonant sounds

connotation
the implied or suggested meaning of a word; emotional overtones of the word; what it suggests to the reader

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couplet
two consecutive rhyming lines

denotation
the literal definition of a word

figure of speech
a word or phrase that identifies or describes something in a way that is not literally true, but may be meaningful in a deeper sense.

hyperbole
gross exaggeration for effect

irony
an unexpected twist; the contrast between what is expected to happen and what actually occurs

metaphor
a direct comparison

onomatopoeia
the use of words whose sounds imitate natural sounds

personification
giving an object or an animal human qualities or characteristics

rhyme scheme
the pattern of rhymes at the ends of lines in a poem.

sarcasm
a form of verbal irony; saying something and meaning the exact opposite, with the intent to be witty or insulting

simile
a comparison using “like” or “as”

stanza
lines grouped together to form a division of a poem, separated from other lines by space

symbol
an object, person, place, event that stands for something more than itself; something concrete that stands for an abstract concept.

Genre
is a division or type of literature. Literature is commonly divided into three major genres drama, poetry, and prose. Each major genre is in turn divided into smaller genres.

For example, poetry is divided into narrative poetry, dramatic poetry, and lyric poetry.

Narrative poetry
is poetry that tells a story. Narrative poems present dramatic events in a vivid way, using some of the same elements as short stories–for example, plot, characters, and dialogue. Narrative poems have a narrator.

Dramatic poetry
is poetry that involves the techniques of drama. One or more characters speak to other characters who may or may not be present in the poem. A dramatic monologue is a poem in which one person addresses a listener or listeners who do not speak.

The speaker reveals his or her character by commenting on a crucial problem or conflict in his or her life.

Lyric poetry
is highly musical verse that expresses the emotions, attitudes,

Ballad
is a song-like poem that tells a story, often one dealing with

Diction
is word choice. To discuss a writer’s diction is to consider the vocabulary

Image
is a word or phrase that appeals to one or more of the senses (sight,

Speaker
is the person whose voice we hear in the poem. The use of “I” does not

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