Steps to annotating a poem

Topics: Free samples

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Last updated: December 17, 2019

Step 1
Skim the poem and circle any words that you do not know

Step 2
Look up the definitions of any word that is unfamiliar to you

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Step 3
Read over the poem closely marking (circling or underlining) words images or phrases that stand out as important to you.

Also mark (circle) any words or phrases that are confusing.

Step 4
Break the poem down by sections or stanzas. Write out the literal meaning(in complete sentences) of each section or stanza. This is the concrete subject of the poem.

Step 5
Identify (circle) any poetic devices that you notice…

i.e. metaphor, simile, personification, allusion etc.

Step 6
Identify the tone of the poem…ie sarcastic, bitter, melancholy, hopeful, playful, nostalgic, etc (Identify any shifts/changes in tone)

Step 7
Identify the theme of the poem in one sentence(This is the abstract subject.)

Step 8
Draw/Sketch a picture for each section of the poem.(Imagery)

Step 9
Briefly explain the significance of the title

Step 10
Identify the speaker of the poem (The speaker is not always the poet)

Choose your subject

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