For this discussion, we continue to practice reading poetry closely, paying atte


For this discussion, we continue to practice reading poetry closely, paying attention to language, rhythm and rhyme, imagery, symbolism, themes and commentary. To do so, we will use the LYSK Poems available as downloadable PDFs in Module 4. Read the two lectures in Modules 4.1 and 4.2, and download the PDFs to read all the poems. For best results, I recommend that you download and read the poems before you tackle the lectures, and see if you can apply the concepts of the lecture to the poems as you go through the lectures. I recommend that you read the poems aloud to get a better sense of their diction and sounds, particularly poems originally written in English. When you are ready, choose one poem and answer all seven questions listed below. If you post early, you can choose any of the poems listed below. Carolyn Forche’s poem “The Colonel” is featured in Professor Dancoff’s lecture about the LYSK approach to poetry, so you cannot use it for this discussion or the written LYSK assignment. After four other students have posted their close readings, you must choose a different poem! In other words, the later you get started, the fewer choices you have! The assigned LYSK poems are the following:
Amichai, “An Arab Shepherd Is Searching for His Goat …”
Atwood, “At First I was Given Centuries”
Brecht, “A Worker Reads History”
Dove, “Testimonial” Frost, “The Road Not Taken” Hayden, “Those Winter Sundays” Longfellow, “The Sound of the Sea” Lum, “Minority Poem”
Nye, “Where Children Live”
Shakespeare, “Sonnet 130” Soto, “Dirt”
Springsteen, “Streets of Philadelphia” Questions for discussion post:
Who is the speaker, and whom is that speaker addressing? Who else forms the audience for the poem? Determine whether the poem is a narrative poem, that is, whether it tells a story. If you think the poem is a narrative poem, what is the central conflict? Who is the protagonist? What antagonists does the protagonist face? If the poem does not tell a story, decide whether there is a central conflict, and what that conflict may be. What poetic techniques has the poet used to get our attention? What kinds of sound work can you detect in the poem? Do you see a rhyme pattern? Is there a rhythm to the poem? How is that rhythm created? Explain four instances of symbolism and figurative language in the poem. What tone does the imagery conjure? What themes do you find? Is there a main theme? How do you know? Do you find a key message in the poem? What clues has the poet provided?


Leave a Reply