Poem Analysis Essay Guide: Outline, Template, Structure
Poetry analysis, which is similar to poetry review, involves analyzing the language and figures of speech used by a poet. It also entails sharing personal views regarding the poem and breaking down the poetic instruments utilized by the said poet. However, it’s not just about the words used (Headrick, 2014). It entails reading between the lines and understanding what made the poet come up with a particular poem. So it may require some background research on the author and history behind the creation of the poem.
Do not worry, we can take care of your academic needs! If you feel that you do not have enough time to complete the assignment then order a custom essay online from us. Our essay writers service have vast experience with this type of work. We have a wide range of free guides and blogs to help you so that you will have more time for the important things. If you still have doubts, you can easily check essayservice review on sitejabber.
What Is A Poetry Analysis?
Poetry analysis may define as a critical review given on a poem, a reflection on the depth and gravity of a poem. It revolves around multiple aspects of a poem starting from the subject of a poem, its theme (meaning), tone, literary devices or speech figures, form to the feeling of the poet to how a reader feels about the poem. It is not only the analysis of techniques used in a poem, but poetry analysis provides a broader and wider picture of the poem, its reality, its hidden meanings between the lines, a study of poet’s mind, feeling and intention behind a poem. Different techniques used in poetry analysis are helpful tools in investigating and reviewing the poem. Behind every review or analysis vital research on poet (author), era (time frame), possible reasons, the background behind the conceptualization poem is vital.
One should read, understand and develop a thesis. Writing services also recommend researching more on the poet and his past works to understand the root of this particular idea.
If you have been asked to write a poem analysis essay, then it means to examine the piece and further dissect it into key elements including its form, techniques used and historical value. Then further appreciating the poem and highlighting to others these points, and gaining a better understanding.
It is also important to show as many ideas as possible that relate to the poem and then create conclusions on this.
To start writing a poetry analysis essay let's look at the prewriting stage.
How to Choose a Topic for a Poetry Analysis Essay?
- In the subject of the poem we mainly focus on the reasons such as why is the poem written or what is it all about?
- What is the context, the central content of the poem?
- Who wrote the poem and why?
- When and where the poet did write the poem, what or who has influenced the poet and what are the key features of the poem?
A topic should be chosen based on the theme you want to write. The theme is the message that the poem is trying to convey. You need to look therefore for concepts and notions that pop up in the poem and come up with an appropriate theme based on those perceptions or "feelings". If you can’t still figure out what topic you should choose for your analysis, it is recommended that you go through other poems similar poems and get a suitable topic for your analysis. Don’t also forget to cite your poem well. And also use in-text citations while quoting from the poem.
Related: COMING UP WITH ESSAY TOPIC IDEAS .
Poem Analysis Essay Outline
To create a good essay, it is needed to plan out the structure of a poem analysis essay so the writing stage will be easier and faster.
Here is an outline of a poem analysis essay to use:
Opening paragraph - Introduce the Poem, title, author and background.
Body of text - Make most of the analysis, linking ideas and referencing to the poem.
Conclusion - State one main idea, feelings and meanings.
Poem Analysis Essay Introduction
To start an introduction to a poem analysis essay, include the name of the poem and the author . Other details like the date of when it was published can also be stated. Then some background information and interesting facts or trivia regarding the poem or author can also be included here.
Poem Analysis Essay Body
When writing the main body of text keep in mind you have to reference all ideas to the poem so include a quotation to back up the sentence, otherwise, it will be a wasted comparison and not count. Be clear with your statements.
Poem Analysis Essay Conclusion
Now, this is where you should take a step back from analyzing the individual elements of the poem and work out its meaning as a whole. Combine the different elements of the analysis and put forward one main idea.
What is the poet trying to say, and how is it enforced and with what feeling? Then look at the meaning and what timeframe does this evolve over?
For example, is it obvious from the start, or does it gradually change towards the end? The last few lines can be very significant within a poem and so should be included in the poem analysis essay conclusion and commented on the impact on the piece.
Remember that you can always send us a " write an essay for me " text and have your assignment done for you.
How to Analyze a Poem?
Before even thinking about your first draft, read the poem as much as possible. If it's possible, listen to it in the original form. This depends on many factors which include if the poet is still alive?
Also reading aloud can help identify other characteristics that could be missed and even to a friend or colleague will give a chance to more insight. It is important to remember that poetry is a form of art painted with only words, this said it could take time to fully appreciate the piece. So take note of any first thoughts you have about the poem, even if they are negative.
Your opinions can change over time but still mark these first thoughts down.
So that to analyze a poem properly, you have to pay attention to the following aspects:
Title of the Poem
So let's go deeper into the poem analysis essay and look at the title. The poet may have spent a lot of time thinking about naming the piece so what can be observed from this and what further questions can be asked?
- What are your expectations? For example, the poem could be titled “Alone” written by Edgar Allan Poe and from this it is natural to assume it will be sad. After reading further does the reality turn out to be different?
- What is the literature style used? So for example, the work could be called “His last sonnet” by John Keats. From appearance, it is possible to deduce that it could be in sonnet form and if not why did the poet choose to mislead the audience?
- What is the poem about? In the poem, “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways” by Elizabeth Barrett, it already states what could be included and what to expect but if it differs from the title what would this suggest?
Literal Meaning of the Poetry
According to our to fully appreciate a piece, it is needed to understand all the words used. So, for example, get a good dictionary and look up all the unknown words. Then go through partly known words and phrases and check these too. Also, maybe check the meaning of words that are used a lot, but remember some text may have had a different meaning a century ago, so use the internet to look up anything that is not clear. Furthermore, people and places and any cultural relevance of the time should be researched too to get a deeper look at the poet's attitude towards the piece. Patterns might become visible at this point and maybe the theme of the poem.
Structure of the Poem
When looking at the structure of the piece this will reveal more information so pay close attention to this. Look at the organization and sections, this will unlock more questions:
- What does each part discuss?
- How do the parts relate to each other?
- Can you see formal separations?
- What logical sense does it have?
- Is there emotional sense that can be evaluated?
- Does having a strict format say anything about the poet?
- Also failing to have a strict structure does this reveal something?
Once you have observed the structure, it is possible to go deeper into the poem analysis essay and investigate how the speaker communicates the poem to the reader.
Tone and Intonation of the Poetry
So now it is possible to look at the poet and see what details can be obtained from them. Is it possible to see the gender or age of the speaker? Is there some race or religious references to pick up on? Then can we see if the speaker is directly communicating their thoughts and ideas to the reader? If not, what is the character the poet has created to convey the ideas or messages? Does the poet's persona differ to the character created and what can be analyzed from this? Also the mood of the speaker could be available now, are they happy or sad, and how can you find out this from the poem?
Once the poet is understood it is possible to move onto who or what the poem is designed for. Then you can see the purpose of the poetry, what does the poet want from the reader? It is also possible that the poet does not desire a response from the audience and is simply making a statement or expressing themselves.
For example, a poem about spring could just be a happy statement that winter has ended. Looking from the other side, this could be an attempt to attract someone's attention or maybe just an instruction to plow the field.
Purpose of the Poem
The subject of the poem can help identify the purpose, as this usually will be what the poet is describing. Then the theme can be identified also, and what does it say about the work? Are there any links between the theme and the subject and what can analyzed from that? The timeframe is also an important factor to consider, for example, the poet's goal back when it was written, may have changed and why? Furthermore, has the original purpose survived the test of time and can it be said to be the best indicator of success?
Language and Imagery of the Poetry
Until this point it was only possible to analyze the literal information available which is the denotative meaning.’ Now let's look at the imagery, symbolism and figures of speech, this is the connotative meaning.
This is where you should look for pictures described within the text and analyze why they have been depicted? So for example, if the poet thas decided to describe the moon this could set the time in the work or maybe the mood of the poem. Also look for groups of images described and patterns within this, what can be deducted from that?
So when looking for symbolism within the text this could be an event or physical object, including people and places that represent non-physical entities like an emotion or concept. For example, a bird flying through the air can be seen as freedom and escaping usual conforms.
In your analysis you will look at techniques like metaphors, similes, personification and alliteration to include just a few. It's important to identify the actual device used and why it was chosen. For example, when comparing something within the text using a metaphor then look at how they are connected and in what way they are expressed? Try to use all available clues to gain better insight into the mind of the poet.
Music of the Poem
Poetry and music have deep connections and can be compared together due to the history and uses throughout the ages.
Here are some things to look out for to help with those comparisons:
- Meter - This can be available to investigate in different ways, for example, iambic pentameter has a strict five beats per line just like a musical score if used what does it say?
- Rhythm - Just like with music, poem can have a rhythm but if there is no given meter, it is needed to look closer and observe what this does to the work. For example, a particular beat that is fast could make the poem happy.
- Special effects - Looking for not so obvious signs where the poet has written in a way so you take longer to pronounce words. Also it is possible to grab your attention in other ways, for what reason has the writer done that?
- Rhyme - There are many different types of rhyming techniques used within poetry, once identified look at how it impacts on the work like make it humorous for example? Be careful to look for unusual patterns for example rhymes within the lines and not just at the end of the sentences, even reading out aloud might help find these and then what does it this say about the poem?
- Sound effects - The depiction of different sounds can be powerful and also using different voices, look at what impact this has on the piece and why?
- Breaking Rules - Rhyme and meter for example can have very specific rules but what if the poet decided to break these conventional techniques and make something new, what does this add to the work and why
How to Write a Poem Analysis Essay?
Below you will find a compelling guide on how to analyze poetry with handy writing tips:
- Choose a suitable poem - If possible, before you start, pick the main subject of your essay, a poem that you would like to analyze. The more you find it interesting, the easier it will be to handle the task.
- Read it fully - If you are wondering how to analyse poetry, the first step you can’t go without is carefully reading the chosen poem multiple times and, preferably, out loud.
- Always double-check the meanings - When reading a poem, don’t forget to check for the meanings of unknown (and known as well) words and phrases.
- Collect all the details you need - To write a compelling essay, you need to study the poem’s structure, contents, main ideas, as well as other background details.
- Explore hidden meanings - When analyzing poem, be sure to look beyond the words. Instead, focus on finding broader, hidden ideas that the author wanted to share through his piece.
- Make an outline - Once you have analyzed poem, outline your essay and write it following the plan.
- Proofread and edit - Finally, once your essay is ready, take your time to revise and polish it carefully.
Poetry Analysis Template
To write a winning poem analysis essay, use the template below or order an essay from our professionals.
- Name of Poem
- Name of Poet
- Date of Publication
- Background or any relevant information
Form of poem
- Structure of poem
- Rhyme of poem
Meaning of poem
- Overall meaning
- How can we relate the poem to our life
- Literary devices
Form of the Poem
Poems are written in some ways, here one need to identify which structure the poet has used for the poem. The forms of poems broadly are stanzas, rhythm, punctuation and rhymes. Carefully analyze the length and number of stanzas , does the rhythm impacts the meaning of the poem, is there many punctuations or little, either the rhyme is consistent, or it’s breaking and what is the rhyme contributing to the meaning of the poem or is it random.
Theme, Meaning or Message of the Poem
In this part, we focus on the topic, main issue or idea of the poem. There are layers of meaning hidden in a poem.
- Meaning: surface meaning that what is actually or physically happening in the poem which a reader can sense.
- Deeper Meaning: the central idea of the poem or what is it actually about.
- Theme: in poetry, there is always a hidden meaning in every line, which depicts the message about life.
Numerous topics can be covered in poems such as love, life, death, birth, nature, memory, war, age, sexuality, experience, religion, race, faith, creator and many others.
Tone of the Poem
The tone of the poem shows attitude or mood of the language used by the poet. Analyze the different shades of the language used in the poem for example; is it formal, judgmental, informal, critical, positive, bitter, reflective, solemn, frustrated, optimistic, ironic, scornful, regretful or morbid.
Literary Device used in the Poem
Find out what the different literary devices are or what sort of figures of speech is used by the poet . Analyze these techniques and suggest their use in the poem by the poet. The poem can contain a symbol, similes, metaphor, alliteration, allegories, oxymoron, assonances, dissonances, repetition, hyperbole, irony.
Conclusion or Feel of the Poem
Lastly, analyze the emotions and feelings linked with the poem; of the poet and what do you feel when you read the poem. This is the very critical part of reviewing a poem because we analyze the inner depth of the poem, the intention & feelings of the poet, the targeted audience, does the poem reflect the poet’s persona, perspective or it does not match with the poet.
Poetry Analysis Essay Example
Analysis of Edgar Allan Poe’s Poem “Annabel Lee”
Written in 1849 and first published after the author’s death, Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe is a beautiful story of true love that goes beyond life. In the poem, the author is commemorating the girl named Annabel Lee, whom he knew since childhood. Despite the young age, the love between the narrator and Annabel was so deep and true that even angels were jealous, and, according to Edgar Allan Poe, their jealousy was so severe that they killed the love of his life. The poem ends with young Annabel Lee being buried in a tomb, leaving the readers with a feeling that the author kept holding on to his love for her for many years after her death.
The two evident topics in the poem are love and loss. The entire narration revolves around the author’s agonizing memory, at the same time demonstrating to the readers the purity and power of true love that makes him cherish the memory of his beloved one even after she is gone. Apart from that, Edgar Allan Poe also discusses such issues of love as jealousy and envy. The author states that the love of the two teens was so strong that even angels in heaven were not half as happy as Annabel and Edgar, which caused them to invade the teens’ romantic “kingdom by the sea” and kill the girl.
The topics discussed in the poem, as well as the style of narration itself, give the poem a very romantic atmosphere. It follows the main principles of the romantic era in poetry in the 18th and 19th centuries, which Edgar Allan Poe was representing. At the same time, the author also gives his poem a sense of musicality and rhythm. The poem’s rhyme scheme puts emphasis on the words “Lee”, “me”, and “sea”. The repetition of these words gives the poem a song-like sound.
A significant role in Edgar Allan Poe’s poem is played by imagery, which emphasizes the author’s unique style. The main imagery used by Allan Poe in Annabel Lee is the Kingdom. The author uses this imagery to set the right tone for his poem and give it a sort of a fairytale feel. At the same time, this imagery is used to take the reader to a different place, though not specifying what exactly this place is. To confirm this - the author uses the phrase “the kingdom by the sea” multiple times in his piece, never specifying its meaning. This trick enables the readers to leave this to their own imagination.
Apart from the Kingdom, the author also operates with the imagery of angels and demons. The narrator blames them for their envy for their deep love, which resulted in the death of Annable Lee. Thus, the author gives a negative attitude towards this imagery. This brings us to another big topic of good and evil discussed in the poem.
Nevertheless, even though the angels’ intervention seems to be clear to the reader from what the author says, Poe’s choice of words doesn’t directly implicate their responsibility for the girl’s death. The narrator blames everybody for his loss. However, he does this in a very tactical and covert way.
In conclusion, it becomes clear that the narrator in Annabel Lee did not only pursue a goal to share his pain and loss. He also emphasizes that true love is everlasting by stating that his love for the gone girl lives with him after all these years. With all its deep topics, imagery, and musicality, Annabel Lee is now considered one of the best works by Edgar Allan Poe.
She was flawless! first time using a website like this, I've ordered article review and i totally adored it! grammar punctuation, content - everything was on point
This writer is my go to, because whenever I need someone who I can trust my task to - I hire Joy. She wrote almost every paper for me for the last 2 years
Term paper done up to a highest standard, no revisions, perfect communication. 10s across the board!!!!!!!
I send him instructions and that's it. my paper was done 10 hours later, no stupid questions, he nailed it.
Sometimes I wonder if Michael is secretly a professor because he literally knows everything. HE DID SO WELL THAT MY PROF SHOWED MY PAPER AS AN EXAMPLE. unbelievable, many thanks
You Might Also Like
New Posts to Your Inbox!
Stay in touch
How To Write A Poetry Essay
- Views 24093
- Author Sandra W.
A Guide On Writing A Poetry Essay
A poetry essay evaluates a poem. It analyzes the words, sounds, feelings, and topics that the poet uses in the poem. A poetry essay should include analysis of the topic, message, rhythm, and word choice. In addition, it should have both an introduction and a conclusion. Below is how to write a poetry essay:
- Introduce your poem with an introductory paragraph - Write the title of the poem and its author then give a brief summary of the poem’s contents.
- Write about the poetic language and imagery - Does the poet use precise and vivid vocabulary to create detailed images? What literary devices are used to enhance meanings? Answer these questions by explaining and analyzing specific examples from the poem. Tell how the poet creates those images.
- Write about sound and sense - Does the poet use rhythm and meter to create meaningful sounds in the poem? Which word sounds does the poet use to create pictures? Does the poet use vocabulary that appeals to the five senses? Answer these questions by explaining in your poetry essay how the poet’s choice of words creates meaningful sound.
- Write about emotion and feeling - Is the poet creating a feeling or mood? Does the poem evoke an emotional response? Answer these questions in your poetry essay by explaining what kind of response the poet is trying to evoke in his audience.
- Write a conclusion to your poetry essay - Explain what the author’s intentions were and whether or not he or she achieved that goal. Support your opinion with details from the poem.
- A Sample Essay on Birds 21-08-2023 0 Comments
- Is Homeschooling an Ideal Way... 21-08-2023 0 Comments
- Essay Sample on Man 14-08-2023 0 Comments
- Academic Writing(23)
- Admission Essay(172)
- Book Summaries(165)
- College Tips(312)
- Content Writing Services(1)
- Essay Help(517)
- Essay Writing Help(76)
- Essays Blog(0)
- Letter Writing(1)
- Photo Essay Assignment(4)
- Resume Writing Tips(62)
- Samples Essays(315)
- Writing Jobs(2)
What's on poetry essay, exemplar english literature essays, poetry analysis support, how to analyse a poem, aqa gcse english language and literature grade boundaries, aqa power and conflict poems, exemplar poetry essays, exemplar poetry essay - comparing two poems - gcse standard (grade 9), exemplar poetry essay - analysing an unseen poem - gcse standard, romeo and juliet characters.
- Craft and Criticism
- Fiction and Poetry
- News and Culture
- Lit Hub Radio
- Reading Lists
- Literary Criticism
- Craft and Advice
- In Conversation
- On Translation
- Short Story
- From the Novel
- The Virtual Book Channel
- Film and TV
- Art and Photography
- Bookstores and Libraries
- Behind the Mic
- Beyond the Page
- The Cosmic Library
- Emergence Magazine
- First Draft: A Dialogue on Writing
- Just the Right Book
- Literary Disco
- The Literary Life with Mitchell Kaplan
- The Maris Review
- New Books Network
- Otherppl with Brad Listi
- So Many Damn Books
- Tor Presents: Voyage Into Genre
- Windham-Campbell Prizes Podcast
- The Best of the Decade
- Best Reviewed Books
- BookMarks Daily Giveaway
- The Daily Thrill
- CrimeReads Daily Giveaway
5 Writers Who Blur the Boundary Between Poetry and Essay
"poets are the hoarders of the literary world".
There is a Bernadette Mayer writing exercise that suggests attempting to flood the brain with ideas from varying sources, then writing it all down, without looking at the page or what spreads over it. I have attempted this exercise multiple times, with multiple sources, and what I love about it—along with many of Mayer’s other 81 prompts—is that what comes out can literally take any form. The form is not dictated by the content I read, nor the rules of the exercise. The information I collect prior to writing may be entirely disparate, seemingly unrelated, but through the writing, it begins to take shape, and links are found. In the process of communicating information in a lyric way, barriers to form withheld, I am able to develop a richer portrait of what thinking really looks like.
I heard someone say once that poets are the hoarders of the literary world: collectors of facts, dates, quotes, newspaper headlines, ticket stubs, and love letters. Indeed, another of Mayer’s prompts is to keep a diary, or diar ies , of such useful things. As these journal pages begin to overflow, content spilling over the borders, the writing becomes something we might not always call a poem. Reflecting on his poetry collection The Little Edges and a book of essays The Service Porch , both of which appeared in 2016, poet and critic Fred Moten said , “The line between the criticism and the poetry is sort of blurry. I got some stuff in the poems that probably could’ve been collected with the essays.”
There is a long-standing tradition of poets who have refused genre, or reinvented it, and who continue to push the boundaries of form. Here are five, but just a cursory glance into any of their work will lead you to uncover many more.
The first essay in Jenny Boully’s latest collection Betwixt and Between: Essays on the Writing Life, published last month, is a journey into two illusive linguistic temporalities: “the future imagined and the past imagined. ” By positioning the reader in a space of hypothesis, Boully tests the limits of memory and lived experience, never quite allowing her reader to land on stable footing. With this linguistic trick, a redefinition of what is the personal begins to emerge.
Throughout her work, Boully is interested in reorienting the role of the reader from passive to participatory and reorienting the structure of the text from chronological to sensory. In an introduction to Boully’s work, Mary Jo Bang writes , “She uses form in a way that undercuts our every expectation based on previous encounters with poetry.” It’s no wonder that excerpts from her first book The Body , written as footnotes to an imaginary text, were included in both John D’Agata’s The Next American Essay and The Best American Poetry 2002 .
Dodie Bellamy is a seamstress of language. Her work stretches the definitions of narrative writing by incorporating literary appropriation, cut-ups, collage, and détournement, or the act of turning a recognizable cultural product on itself, a technique developed by the Situationist International in the 1950s. Her poetic “cunt ups” take works of the traditional poetic canon and reinvent them with a contemporary feminist voice, directly splicing the historic masculine texts with pornographic imagery. The 2013 collection Cunt Norton employs the original language of 33 canonical poets, twisting them into erotic poems as an act of love for her predecessors. “These patriarchal voices that threatened to erase me—of course I love them as well,” Bellamy wrote of the work . Her experiments began to take a more prosaic form as she desired further space for her content. “I was writing linked poems that kept getting longer and more narrative,” she said in an interview .
Due to her inventive and often hysterical treatment of language, Bellamy’s voice is engaging on any topic. The themes she tackles in her collected essays When the Sick Rule the World range from the gentrification of San Francisco, her experiences with a women’s writing group and a moving tribute to the late equally inventive writer Kathy Acker, in the form of a catalogue of the contents of her wardrobe.
When Claudia Rankine’s Citizen won the National Book Critics Circle Award, the judges’ citation read, in part, “It’s not (just) poetry.” The prose-poetry hybrid is a current throughout her work; her previous poetry title Don’t Let Me Be Lonely was described, alongside Citizen , as “lyric essays” in the The New York Review of Books . Rankine’s work uses investigative tools of poetry to probe what it means to be human and to encourage readers to examine their personal responsibility to others. Through experiments in form, she highlights the dangers of lazy classification of people and experiences; her words in any medium provoke self-reflection.
In Citizen , a 2015 essay on Serena Williams finds a comfortable home alongside prose and list poems. With her employment of the second person throughout the collection, Rankine prompts her readers to enter into the very experiences she is describing, whether they are wholly familiar or not. As such, her approach is in equal measure confrontational and humanizing.
When the poet, critic, and renowned translator David Rattray passed away at the age of 57 in 1993, the experimental writer Lynn Tillman wrote , “He swept us away also with his ‘bad attitude,’ his insubordination to authority and to the authority of what he knew.” This was true not just in the manner he lived his life, but also how he captured life in text. A principle translator of Antonin Artaud, Rattray’s own poems display a diary-like quality: they are grand narrations stuffed full of dates, places, people.
A collection of essays and stories exploring his relationship to close friends, grief, drugs, travel, and literature called How I Became One of the Invisible was put together by Chris Kraus just before his death. Through narratives that are at once breathless and directional, and full of poetic references and quotes, Rattray reveals his deep feelings for those with whom he shared his life. “He believed people were gems, precious, and treated them accordingly,” Betsy Sussler wrote , following his passing. And so too did he treat his words, allowing us to enter into his world imbued with sensitivity.
Asked in an interview by Emily Gould as to how she decides on which genre(s) she will employ when writing a new book, Maggie Nelson replied , “Genre, for me, is determined by the unfolding of my interests, which is unknowable at a projects’ start.” Her defiance of category is not only evident in her bibliography, but in the bibliography of each book which makes it up. Bluets , which began as an investigation into the color blue and its varying manifestations throughout history, became a book of prose poems. The Art of Cruelty , a personal reflection on the employment of violence in art, became a book of academic criticism. Begun as a work of criticism, The Argonauts became a personal memoir, with its background research spilling, literally, into the margins. “I find my way to the right tone, idiom, form or set of subjects as I bumble along,” Nelson says.
It is her very adaptability of form and expression that has become one of her signature attributes, despite the literary world’s continued insistence on writerly classification, and in turn mimics the fluidity of her subjects. Hilton Als writes , “It’s Nelson’s articulation of her many selves . . . that makes her readers feel hopeful.”
Listen: Claudia Rankine talks to Paul Holdengräber about objectifying the moment, investigating a subject, and accidental stalking.
- Share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)
Previous article, next article, to the lithub daily, support lit hub..
Join our community of readers.
Follow us on Twitter
12 Famous Authors at Work With Their Dogs
- RSS - Posts
Created by Grove Atlantic and Electric Literature
Sign Up For Our Newsletters
How to Pitch Lit Hub
Advertisers: Contact Us
Support Lit Hub - Become A Member
Become a Lit Hub Supporting Member : Because Books Matter
For the past decade, Literary Hub has brought you the best of the book world for free—no paywall. But our future relies on you. In return for a donation, you’ll get an ad-free reading experience , exclusive editors’ picks, book giveaways, and our coveted Joan Didion Lit Hub tote bag . Most importantly, you’ll keep independent book coverage alive and thriving on the internet.
Become a member for as low as $5/month
- How to Cite
- Language & Lit
- Rhyme & Rhythm
- The Rewrite
- Search Glass
Body paragraphs, write poetry: what is a verse paragraph and how to write a poetry essay.
A poem analysis essay evaluates a poem in a literary analysis. It analyzes the words, sounds, feelings and topics that the poet uses in the poem. A poetry analysis essay should include analysis of the topic, message, rhythm and word choice. It should have both an introduction and a conclusion, similar to normal essay writing or research paper.
Introduce your poem with an introductory paragraph that includes your thesis statement in the topic sentence. Write the title of the poem and its author. Paraphrase the poem’s contents without going too in depth. A brief summary on Edgar Allen Poe's "The Raven," for example, would state that the speaker of the poem is longing for his lost love and becomes beguiled by a raven that speaks only one word, "nevermore."
Write about the poetic language and imagery. Does the poet use precise and vivid vocabulary to create detailed images? What literary devices are used to enhance meanings? Answer these questions by explaining and analyzing specific examples from the poem. Tell how the poet creates those images. A good example of this would be the poetry essay found at Bookstove.com . The poetry essay analyzes Poe's use of simile and metaphor in "The Raven."
Write about sound and sense. Does the poet use rhythm and meter to create meaningful sounds in the poem or is it free verse? Does the poet use iambic pentameter or alliteration? Which word sounds does the poet use to create pictures? Does the poet use figurative language? Answer these questions by explaining in your poetry essay how the poet’s choice of words creates meaningful sound. For example, a poetry essay on Poe's "Raven" would show how the ABCBBB rhyme scheme helps to create a deeper sense of melancholy.
Write about emotion and feeling. Is the poet creating a feeling or mood? Does the poem evoke an emotional response? Do they use personification in their writing process or any figures of speech? Answer these questions in your poetry essay by explaining what kind of response the poet is trying to evoke in his audience through a particular poem. A poetry essay on "The Raven" would describe how the use of melancholy word choices and repetition, coupled with the creepy raven and mourning for the lost Lenore, create a deep sense of sadness and despair for the reader.
Write a conclusion to your poetry essay. Explain the author’s intent, point of view, writing style, and poetic techniques with the poem and whether or not he or she achieved that goal. Support your opinion with details from the poem. Also, do some research on background information. Is there a cultural context or historical context the poet is writing from? This could give the reader a better understanding of the poem.
Make sure to use quotation marks when quoting lines of poetry
You can use a writing service to check your spelling and grammar
- Plagiarism checker Do The Check
- Academic editing Ask For Help
- Samples database View Samples Base
How to Write a Poetry Essay: Step-By-Step-Guide
14 Nov 2022
❓ What Is A Poetry Analysis?
☝ How to Choose a Poem for Analysis?
📝Poem Analysis Essay Outline
📍 Tips on How to Analyze a Poem
Title of the Poem
Poetry background, structure of the poem, tone and intonation of the poetry, language forms and symbols of the poetry, poetic devices, music of the poem, purpose of poem.
📚 Poetry Analysis Template
📑 Example of Poem Analysis
Edgar Allan Poe once said:
“Poetry is the rhythmical creation of beauty in words.”
The reader's soul enjoys the beauty of the words masterfully expressed by the poet in a few lines. How much meaning is invested in these words, and even more lies behind them? For this reason, poetry is a constant object of scientific interest and the center of literary analysis.
As a university student, especially in literary specialties, you will often come across the need to write a poetry analysis essay. It may seem very difficult when you encounter such an essay for the first time. This is not surprising because even experienced students have difficulty performing such complex studies. This article will point you in the right direction and can be used as a poetry analysis worksheet.
Need help with an essay?
Get your paper written by a professional writer
What Is A Poetry Analysis?
Any poetry analysis consists in an in-depth study of the subject of study and the background details in which it is located. Poetry analysis is the process of decomposing a lyrical work into its smallest components for a detailed study of the independent elements. After that, all the data obtained are reassembled to formulate conclusions and write literary analysis . The study of a specific lyric poem also includes the study of the hidden meaning of the poem, the poet's attitude and main idea, and the expression of individual impressions. After all, the lyrics aim to reach the heart of the reader.
The goal of the poetry analysis is to understand a literary work better. This type of scientific research makes it possible to study entire categories of art on the example of specific works, classify them as certain movements, and find similarities and differences with other poems representing the era.
A poetry analysis essay is a very common type of an essay for university programs, especially in literary and philological areas. Students are often required to have extensive knowledge as well as the ability of in-depth analysis. Such work requires immersion in the context and a high level of concentration.
Is writing essays your hobby?
Participate in our "Independence Day of the United States" essay writing competition and get a 12-month Quizlet subscription.
- Deadline: July 24, 2023
- Topic: Declaration of Independence
- Language: English
- Length: 1000-5000 words
- Font size: 11 or 12
How to Choose a Poem for Analysis?
You are a really lucky person if you have the opportunity to choose a poem to write a poetry analysis essay independently. After all, any scientific work is moving faster and easier if you are an expert and interested in the field of study. First of all, choose a poet who appeals to you. The piece is not just a set of sentences united by a common meaning. Therefore, it is primarily a reflection of the thoughts and beliefs of the author.
Also, choose a topic that is interesting and close to you. It doesn’t matter if it is an intimate sonnet, a patriotic poem, or a skillful description of nature. The main thing is that it arouses your interest. However, pay attention to the size of the work to make your work easier. The volume should be sufficient to conduct extensive analysis but not too large to meet the requirement for a poem analysis essay.
Well, in the end, your experience and knowledge of the poetry topic are important. Stop choosing the object of study that is within the scope of your competence. In this way, you will share your expert opinion with the public, as well as save yourself from the need for additional data searches required for better understanding.
Stuck with finding the right title?
Get plenty of fresh and catchy topic ideas and pick the perfect one with PapersOwl Title Generator.
Poem Analysis Essay Outline
A well-defined structure is a solid framework for your writing. Sometimes our thoughts come quite chaotically, or vice versa, you spend many hours having no idea where to start writing. In both cases, a poem analysis outline will come to your aid. Many students feel that writing an essay plan is a waste of time. However, you should reconsider your views on such a work strategy. And although it will take you time to make a poetry analysis essay outline, it will save you effort later on. While a perfect way out is to ask professionals to write your essays online , let’s still take a look at the key features of creating a paper yourself. Working is much easier and more pleasant when you understand what to start from and what to rely on. Let's look at the key elements of a poem analysis essay structure.
The essence of a poetry essay outline is to structure and organize your thoughts. You must divide your essay into three main sections: introduction, body, and conclusions. Then list brainstormed ideas that you are going to present in each of these parts.
Your essay should begin with an introductory paragraph . The main purpose of this section is to attract the attention of the reader. This will ensure interest in the research. You can also use these paragraphs to provide interesting data from the author of the poem and contextual information that directly relates to your poem but is not a part of the analysis yet.
Another integral part of the poem analysis essay introduction is the strong thesis statement . This technique is used when writing most essays in order to summarize the essence of the paper. The thesis statement opens up your narrative, giving the reader a clear picture of what your work will be about. This element should be short, concise, and self-explanatory.
The central section of a literary analysis essay is going to contain all the studies you’ve carried out. A good idea would be to divide the body into three or four paragraphs, each presenting a new idea. When writing an outline for your essay, determine that in the body part, you will describe:
- The central idea.
- Analysis of poetic techniques used by the poet.
- Your observations considering symbolism.
- Various aspects of the poem.
Make sure to include all of the above, but always mind the coherence of your poem literary analysis.
In the final paragraph , you have to list the conclusions to which your poetry analysis came. This is a paragraph that highlights the key points of the study that are worth paying attention to. Ensure that the information in the conclusion matches your goals set in the introduction. The last few lines of a poem usually contain the perfect information for you to wrap up your paper, giving your readers a ground for further thought.
Know how to structure your paper
- 12-point Times New Roman
- 0" between paragraphs
- 1" margin all around
- double spaced (275 words/page) / single-spaced (550 words/page)
- 0.5" first line of a paragraph
PapersOwl editors can also format your paper according to your specific requirements.
Tips on How to Analyze a Poem
Now, having general theoretical information about what a poetry analysis essay is, what its components are, and how exactly you can make an outline, we are ready to move on to practical data. Let's take a closer look at the key principles that you should rely on in the poetry analysis. As you might guess, just reading a poem will not be enough to make a comprehensive analysis. You have to pay attention to the smallest details to catch what other researchers have not noticed before you.
And although the poems do not always have a title, if the work you have chosen has a name, then this is a good basis for starting the poetry analysis. The title of the poetic work gives the understanding of what the poet considers to be the key ideas of his verse. In some cases, this element directly reflects the theme and idea of the poem. However, there are also common cases when the poet plays with the name, putting the opposite information into it. Look at the correlation between the title and the content of the poem. This may give you new clues to hidden meanings.
To fully immerse yourself in the context of the verse, you need to study the prerequisites for its writing. Analyze poetry and pay attention to the period of the author's life in which the work was written. Study what emotions prevailed in a given time. The background information will help you study the verse itself and what is behind it, which is crucial for a critical analysis essay . What was the poet's motivation, and what sensations prompted him to express himself specifically in this form? Such in-depth research will give you a broad understanding of the author's intent and make your poem analysis essay writing more solid.
This fragment of your poem analysis essay study also includes interpretations of all the difficult or little-known words. Perhaps the analyzed poem was written using obsolete words or has poetic terms. For a competent poem analysis, you need to have an enhanced comprehension of the concepts.
Each lyrical work consists of key elements. The theory identifies four main components of a poem’s structure: stanza, rhyme, meter, and line break. Let’s clarify each of the terms separately so that you know exactly what you are supposed to analyze.
The stanza is also called a verse. This element is a group of lines joined together and separated from other lines by a gap. This component of the poem structure exists for the ordering of the poem and the logical separation of thoughts.
The next crucial element is rhyme. This is a kind of pattern of similar sounds that make up words. There are different types of a rhyme schemes that a particular poem can follow. The difference between the species lies in the spaces between rhyming words. Thus, the most common rhyme scheme in English literature is iambic pentameter.
The meter stands for a composite of stressed and unstressed syllables, following a single scheme throughout the poem. According to the common silabotonic theory, the poem’s rhythm determines the measure of the verse and its poetic form. In other words, this is the rhythm with which lyrical works are written.
Finally, the line break is a technique for distinguishing between different ideas and sentences within the boundaries of one work. Also, the separation serves the reader as a key to understanding the meaning, thanks to the structuring of thoughts. If the ideas went continuously, this would create an extraordinary load on perception, and the reader would struggle to understand the intended message.
Writing an essay about poetry requires careful attention and analysis. Poems, although short, can be intricate and require a thorough understanding to interpret them effectively. Some students may find it challenging to analyze poetry and may consider getting professional help or pay to do an assignment on poetry. Regardless of the approach, it is essential to create a well-structured essay that examines the poem's meaning and provides relevant examples.
Build your thesis statement
This is AI-powered online tool that lets you create a thesis statement about any topic you need.
- Simple interface
- Works with any type of paper
- Absolutely free
- Unlimited attempts
The tone and intonation of the poem could be analyzed based on two variables, the speaker and the recipient. Considering these two sides of the narrative, you can reach a better overview of the analyzed poem.
The first direction is to dig deeper into the author's ideas by analyzing thematic elements. Pay attention to any information about the poet that can be gleaned from the poem. What mood was the author in when he wrote it, what exactly he felt, and what he wanted to share? What could he be hiding behind his words? Why did the poet choose the exact literary form? Is it possible to trace a life position or ideology through analysis? All of this information will help you get a clue on how to understand a poem.
The analysis of the figure of the recipient is also going to uncover some crucial keys to coherent study. Analyze a poem and determine whether the poem was written for someone specific or not. Find out whether the poet put motivational value into his work or even called readers to action. Is the writer talking to one person or a whole group? Was the poem based on political or social interests?
Having sufficiently analyzed the evident elements of the poem, it is time to pay attention to the images and symbols. This is also called the connotative meaning of the work. It can sometimes get challenging to interpret poems, so we will see which other poetic techniques you should consider in the poetry analysis essay.
To convey intricate ideas and display thoughts more vividly, poets often use figurative language. It mostly explains some terms without directly naming them. Lyrical expression works are rich in literary devices such as metaphor, epithet, hyperbole, personification, and others. It may sometimes get really tough to research those poem elements yourself, so keep in mind buying lit essay online. Descriptive language is also one of the techniques used in poems that requires different literary devices in order to make the story as detailed as possible.
To fully understand poetry, it is not enough just to describe its structure. It is necessary to analyze a poem, find the hidden meanings, multiple artistic means, references the poet makes, and the language of writing.
Poetic devices, such as rhythm, rhyme, and sounds, are used to immerse the audience. The poets often use figurative techniques in various poems, discovering multiple possibilities for the readers to interpret the poem. To discover the composition dedicated to the precise verse, you need to read the poem carefully. Consider studying poetry analysis essay example papers to better understand the concepts. It is a certain kind of reader’s quest aimed at finding the true meaning of the metaphor the poet has hidden in the poem. Each literary device is always there for a reason. Try to figure out its purpose.
Many poems formed the basis of the songs. This does not happen by chance because each poem has its own music. Lyrical works have such elements as rhythm and rhyme. They set the pace for reading. Also, sound elements are often hidden in poems. The line break gives a hint about when to take a long pause. Try to pay attention to the arrangement of words. Perhaps this will reveal you a new vision of the analyzed poem.
While you analyze a poem, you are supposed to search for the purpose. Each work has its purpose for writing. Perhaps this is just a process in which the author shares his emotions, or maybe it's a skillful description of landscapes written under great impressions. Social lyrics illuminate the situation in society and pressing problems. Pay attention to whether the verse contains a call to action or an instructive context. Your task is to study the poem and analyze the motives for its writing. Understanding the general context, and especially the purpose of the poet will make your analysis unique.
Poetry Analysis Template
To make it easier for you to research, we have compiled a template for writing a poetry analysis essay. The best specialists of the our writing service have assembled the main guides that will serve as a layout for your essay. Choose a poem that suits you and analyze it according to this plan.
- The title of the poem or sonnet
- The name of the poet
- The date the poem was first published
- The background information and interesting facts about the poet and the poem
- Identify the structure of the poem, and the main components
- Find out the data about the speaker and recipient
- State the purpose of the poem
- Distinguish the topic and the idea of the verse
- Study the literary devices
- Search for the hidden meanings
Following these tips, you will write a competitive poem analysis essay. Use these techniques, and you will be able to meet the basic requirements for quality work. However, don't forget to add personality to your essay. Analyze both the choices of the author of the poem and your own vision. First of all, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Do not limit yourself to dry analysis, add your own vision of the poem. In this way, you will get a balanced essay that will appeal to teachers.
Example of Poem Analysis
Maya Angelou's "Still I Rise," is a powerful anthem of strength and resilience that has become an iconic piece of literature. The poem was written in the 1970s during the civil rights movement and was published in Angelou's collection of poetry, "And Still I Rise," in 1978. The structure of the poem is unique in that it is not divided into stanzas but is composed of a series of short phrases that are separated by semicolons. This creates a sense of continuity and momentum as the poem moves forward. The lack of stanzas also reflects the speaker's determination to keep going, regardless of the obstacles she faces. The tone of the poem is confident and defiant, with a strong sense of pride in the speaker's identity and heritage. The intonation is rhythmic and musical, with a repeated refrain that emphasizes the theme of rising above adversity. The language forms used in the poem are simple and direct. One of the most powerful symbols in the poem is the image of the rising sun… FULL POEM ANALYSIS
Our database is filled with a wide range of poetry essay examples that can help you understand how to analyze and write about poetry. Whether you are a student trying to improve your essay writing skills or a poetry enthusiast looking to explore different perspectives on your favorite poems, our collection of essays can provide valuable insights and inspiration. So take a look around and discover new ways to appreciate and interpret the power of poetry!
Was this article helpful?
Thanks for your feedback.
I’ve always been a hard-working person (got zero Cs since my primary school:)). Although, it doesn’t mean I’m a super nerd or something. You know, I just manage my time successfully. I never skip typos and don’t accept plagiarism, because I realize how important it is for students.
Readers also enjoyed
Insider's guide how to beating turnitin.
Student Tips 91 likes
Redundancy in Writing: Guide on Succinctly Writing
Student Tips 77 likes
Draw Our Owl In Your Own Style (Art Competition)
Student Tips 64 likes
WHY WAIT? PLACE AN ORDER RIGHT NOW!
Simply fill out the form, click the button, and have no worries!