Author Archives: Elsa

Authentic Edible Gold Leaf

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Edible gold leaf is really a luxury garnish; it could possibly be utilized to pay for confectionery items. Sugar candy may be covered completely in gold, or it may be flecked softly with real gold leaf to boost the appearance as well as to communicate a feeling of luxury.

Genuine gold leaf garnishes do not add or remove from the flavor of this dish whatsoever; they are utilized entirely due to their visual appeal.

Utilizing gold foliage in luxury gourmet trainings

> Luxury confectionery items such as special-occasion desserts and cakes also use edible gold leaf garnishes. The golden leaf used in those requires to be real and unalloyed, unlike that used in jewellery or other decorative, non-edible purposes.

> Edible leaf garnishes are increasingly being utilized by experienced chefs as well as comparative novices at cooking and bakery. As is true with most technical components, this foliage also has to be utilized with some ability and experience.

> Edible gold comprises highly purified gold alloy brought down to the thickness of a few microns across. One careless or confused touch is that it needs to be displaced or have dropped on the user’s skin or adhere to an unintended place on your gourmet dish or confection or candies.

> Edible gold is also available in flake form. However, the sheet shape is more practical when covering larger surface locations. The flake kind can come in more practical when decorating surfaces with pieces and flakes of gold, or to provide an overall shimmer. Special-occasion beverages such as champagne and specialty desserts or wines can be flecked with edible gold flakes.

> Because it is made of real gold alloy, edible leaf preparations are used as garnishes. A garnish is normally the final decorative touch awarded into a dish, until it’s served. This rule works for golden foliage as well, because though it is an inert metal, devices such as microwave ovens may react to its shimmering surface if meals utilizing edible metal foliage is cooked in it.

Ingesting gold foliage

Such leaf is a non-reactive inclusion since gold is an aluminum alloy. However, to be used in raw preparations, it has to be as purified as possible. For this reason, gold of some top carat value is usually utilized in edible foliage preparations. Gold of carat value of 22 to 24 is considered pure enough to be used for edible purposes.

In this case, it is consumed by the body . It can be impossible to recognize genuine gold leaf by simply looking at it. Since touching raw gold or silver leaf is near impossible since it will stick to your fingers, the next best step to take would be to buy it from a trusted source.

If you are catering to an eclectic guest list, then you may choose to make sure that the edible gold leaf you are purchasing is kosher or halal certified as well. You may locate leaf sheet packaged in the form of many sheets inside a leaflet. Sizes may vary, but usually, edible foliage will probably be around or less compared to 0.13 microns in breadth.

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Unique Ways to Create Your Own Special Bath Bombs

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Bath bombs are an superb pick for a handmade Christmas present or stocking stuffer. It is a fantastic idea to generate a huge batch at the start of the Christmas period to keep available for celebration gifts or final second office gift exchanges.

There are plenty of innovative ways to decorate your bath bombs to turn them to very unique presents. The regional craft store will probably take many different Christmas colored soap molds which are a fantastic method to generate bath bombs. You could also find a great deal of soap mould choices on the internet.

In the event you do not need to invest the excess cash on vacation molds (or you have procrastinated and it is too late to get them sent!) , there are plenty of alternatives for decorating plain curved ones.

Shea butter makes fantastic “icing.” Soften it from the microwave in a small bowl before it’s the consistency of cream. When it’s too runny just let it sit a few minutes before it thickens up. After the consistency is correct, dip the bath bombs inside around 1/4 of the manner in so only the shirts are coated.

You will have a few moments to operate until the shea butter stinks, so do 4 in a time and then decorate them. Even though the shea butter remains tender, scatter “toppings” to the bath bombs. I like the coloured sugar that you purchase to scatter on biscuits since they provide them a joyous appearance. Alternatives include grated green, dried rose petals and dried spice like a spoonful of cinnamon or nutmeg.

You’re able to earn bath bombs which are modest in size (1 1/4″) and decorate and bundle them to seem like truffles. Purchase the little candies papers in your supermarket and set a little bathroom bomb in every one and set them in a candy box to get a super cute present. Just make sure you tag them rather than edible!

There are tons of alternatives for aromas. Cinnamon and vanilla equally exude festive feelings and so are good to get in the Christmas mood whilst relaxing in the conclusion of the day.

Also remember that if you are giving them to somebody on Christmas afternoon, it may be a fantastic idea to utilize a wonderful relaxing odor such as lavender. A pleasant unwinding bath to recuperate from this Christmas season is really a great present!

This is my beloved Christmas bath bomb recipe. The gingerbread scent constantly sets me in a fantastic mood.

2 tablespoons coconut soda
1 Fragrant uric acid
1 c tapioca starch

2 tablespoons.


Blend shea butter and essential oils, then drizzle over dry mix and blend with hands. Spritz with witch hazel necessary to hold mixture together.

To Learn More and Fantastic recipes for making bath bombs, see our website:

"Jenny Kissed Me" by Leigh Hunt, A Discussion of the Poem and the Poet

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Jenny kissed me when we met,

Jumping from the chair she sat in;

Time, you thief, who love to get

Sweets into your list, put that in:

Say I’m weary, say I’m sad,

Say that health and wealth have missed me,

Say I’m growing old, but add

Jenny kissed me.

Leigh Hunt was a 19th century English essayist, critic, poet, and publisher. Hunt was not a renowned poet, though his “Jenny Kissed Me” has been enjoyed and often quoted for nearly two centuries. However, Hunt lived during an age of English Romanticism and was influential in the lives of Percy Bysshe Shelley, Lord Byron, and John Keats. He was also contemporary with Samuel Coleridge, William Wordsworth, and Charles Dickens. Such great company has given Leigh Hunt a distinguished status.

About “Jenny Kissed Me”

In 1835 Leigh Hunt and his large family moved to Chelsea in London and became neighbor to poet and author, Thomas Carlyle, at his suggestion. The two became close friends and Hunt’s home was always open to his circle of friends, of which there were many.

Two stories exist. One story is that Leigh Hunt visited the Carlyles to deliver the news that he was going to publish one of Thomas Carlyle’s poems. When the news was delivered to Carlyle’s wife, Jane, she jumped up and kissed him.

The other story is that during one winter Hunt was sick with influenza and absent for so long that when he finally recovered and went to visit the Carlyles, Jane jumped up and kissed him as soon as he appeared at the door. Two days later one of the Hunt servants delivered a note, addressed, “From Mr. Hunt to Mrs. Carlyle.” It contained the poem, “Jenny Kissed Me.”

The second story is the one most often repeated.

Thankfully, Hunt was a wise editor, because in the original draft Jenny was Nelly and the word “jaundiced” was used instead of “weary” in the fifth line.

Reputedly, Leigh Hunt was a flirtatious man, often in trouble with his wife. Also reputedly, Jane Carlyle was a bit sour and better known for her acid tongue than for impulsive affection.

The poem, “Jenny Kissed Me” has been described variously as whimsical, charming, simple, and unaffected. Many readers encounter it for the first time during their school-age years and remember it all their lives. Numerous girls have been named “Jenny” as a result of the fond memory of the poem.

The first striking structural feature of “Jenny Kissed Me” is the trochaic meter. This is characterized by a foot that contains an accented syllable followed by an unaccented one. This meter is not commonly used in formal English poetry because it can sound singsong.

The trochaic meter is more common in children’s nursery rhymes where a singsong rhythm is welcome. Think of “Twinkle, twinkle little star, How I wonder what you are.”

The singsong effect is offset by the abab rhyme scheme in the poem, as opposed to an aabb rhyme scheme. The former rhyme scheme produces a four line verse as the basic unit of the poem, as in “Jenny Kissed Me.” The latter rhyme scheme produces two line couplets which enhance the singsong effect, as in children’s nursery rhymes.

Trochaic meter can also sound solemn or heavy due to the fact that the trochaic foot has a falling pattern (stressed syllable followed by an unstressed syllable). However, “Jenny Kissed Me” is a lighthearted poem and is supported by the use of feminine rhymes.

Lines that end with a stressed syllable are said to be masculine and lines that end with an unstressed syllable are said to be feminine. In “Jenny Kissed Me” lines 1, 3, 5, and 7 are masculine, but that rhyme pattern is not carried throughout the poem. Lines 2, 4, 6, and 8 are feminine, helping to offset the masculine rhymes and helping to make the poem feel lighter and brighter.

The insightful ending to “Jenny Kissed Me” invariably brings a smile to the reader’s face.

About Leigh Hunt

James Henry Leigh Hunt was born in England in 1784 and died in 1859. Many English poets and writers were contemporaries of Leigh Hunt, including Keats, Shelley, Byron, Coleridge, Wordsworth, Dickens, Carlyle, Jeremy Bentham, and Charles Darwin.

During Hunt’s lifetime England engaged in the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 with America, and the 23 year period of the Napoleonic Wars with France. During Hunt’s lifetime the French Revolution occurred and Napoleon became Emperor of France. Later, steam engines created an industrial revolution, and Darwin sailed to the Galapagos Islands and reported his findings. During a three year period Hunt’s friends and supporters, Keats, Shelley, and Byron all died at young ages.

Leigh Hunt was born into a poor family near London in 1784 and attended school in London at Christ’s Hospital, a school founded 240 years earlier for the education of poor children. Following his schooling, Hunt took a job as a clerk in the war office.

In 1805 Hunt partnered with his older brother, John, a printer, to establish a newspaper called The News. Three years later the brothers abandoned the newspaper and created a political weekly that established their liberal reputation called the Examiner. Among other topics, the Examiner called for many reforms in Parliament, criticized King George III, and called for the abolition of slavery.

The power of journalism came of age during this period of English history with the publishing of numerous critical newspapers which collectively became known as the “radical press.” Consequently, the government became very busy, though mostly unsuccessfully, prosecuting the “radical press” for seditious libel.

In 1812 the Hunts wrote an article in the Examiner that called the Prince Regent, the future King George IV, “a violator of his word, a libertine over head and ears in disgrace, a despiser of domestic ties, the companion of gamblers and demireps.” As a result, John and Leigh Hunt were convicted by a jury of libel and sentenced to two years in prison.

Though he continued to write for the Examiner while in prison, Leigh Hunt’s separation from his family convinced him to turn away from political writing and to focus on literary writing.

Shortly after being released from prison, Leigh Hunt moved into his favorite house in Hampstead where he was able to spend precious time with his wife and three children and with his literary friends. Among those friends who stayed with Hunt for periods of time in his Hampstead house were Percy Bysshe Shelley and John Keats.

Hunt had earlier introduced the world to the writings of Keats and Shelley in the pages of the Examiner. His section on “Young Poets” gave Keats and Shelley access to valuable space where some of their first works were published.

Keats welcomed Hunt’s tutelage for about a year. He broke away from Hunt when a critic labeled Hunt and Keats as members of “The Cockney School of Poetry.”

In 1818 Shelley and his family decided to move to Italy for health and financial reasons. His friend, Lord Byron, was living in Italy at the time and the two corresponded for several years while each lived in different parts of Italy.

In 1821, when Shelley and Byron were both located in Pisa, Shelley envisioned a new magazine called The Liberal, which Shelley, Byron, and friend, Leigh Hunt, would publish in Italy. Shelley sent money and an invitation to Hunt and promised to provide a house and income for Hunt and his large family.

Hunt liked the prospect of joining Shelley and Byron in Italy and took his family to Genoa and then to Leghorn to meet Shelley. After their meeting Hunt and his family went to Pisa to join Byron, and Shelley set sail in his boat, the “Don Juan,” for his home up the coast at Casa Magni.

Shelley’s boat was caught in a thunderstorm and sank. Shelley’s body and his crew washed ashore in Corsica a few days later. Local health laws prohibited the moving of the bodies to Rome or Pisa, so a month later Hunt, Byron, and family members attended a cremation of Shelley’s body. After the cremation Hunt ended up in possession of Shelley’s heart, which he eventually returned to Shelley’s wife, Mary.

Lord Byron was not interested in The Liberal and soon left Italy to take a commanding interest in the civil war unfolding in Greece. Byron died in Greece of respiratory disease in 1823.

Hunt and his family were left in Italy without their friends and without an income. Hunt published a few editions of The Liberal, but it lacked heart and soul and failed. Hunt received an advance for literary works and took his family, which now included seven children, back to England.

Hunt was impoverished most of the rest of his life. Charles Dickens was instrumental in agitating the government for the grant of a pension to be paid to England’s needy authors. In 1847 Hunt began receiving the pension which eased, but did not eliminate, his financial constraints.

Shortly after returning from Italy, Hunt moved to Chelsea, where, as he had done at the Hampstead house, he opened his home to his literary friends.

The publication of Dickens’ novel, Bleak House, considered by some critics to be his finest work, though certainly not his most popular, included a character said to be modeled after Leigh Hunt. The book caused a rift to develop between Dickens and Hunt.

The Bleak House character, Harold Skimpole, was described as “airy, improvident and objectionable.” Skimpole claims to be a child when it comes to finances and manages to have everyone else pay his way through life.

Though Dickens denied that this was a characterization of Hunt and offered apologies, Hunt and his literary friends were offended.

Leigh Hunt died at age 75, well-remembered by his many friends. William Hazlitt, the painter and writer, said that “in conversation he is all life and animation, combining the vivacity of the school-boy with the resources of the wit and the taste of the scholar.”


‘Begging’ by Siphiwe Ka Ngwenya

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Should we feel compassion or any sense of empathy for beggars? It may often seem as if beggars should be Oscar winning nominees for their acting abilities. They seem to be masters at acting sad and desperate. And what can we do but feel sorry for them? Siphiwe Ka Ngwenya wrote the poem ‘begging’ because he realised the plight of those who were genuine beggars. He saw those who were really suffering in sad circumstances.

The poem is written in free verse. There are no punctuation marks. This gives a sense of desperation. The beggars have made begging their profession. They beg in order to survive another day. Some people work for an institution from nine to five. Others are self-employed. Whatever the case, nobody at work or in the community really cares about how we survive another day. Some go home after work and start drinking. Others flop down in front of the television. And then there are those that go out and socialize or work a second job.

Beggars beg to survive another day. The poet uses a small letter “i” to diminish the status of the narrator. The narrator is witnessing what many of us prefer not to see: the desperation on the streets. He merely tells us what he sees. And who is the narrator? Well, if you’re walking down a crowded street, every unknown person you pass is nobody in particular. In fact, you’re nobody too. The beggars are “nobodies”. Yet, each person that is on the street, for whatever reason, has a facial expression that tells a story. Some expressions are etched deeply and, like graffiti, are not easy to remove. The beggars’ faces show pain. Their faces are somber. They have sores and bruises on their hands and bodies. They are blistered and quiver. Fever? Cold? They suffer anxiety.

When there is no work there is no money, which means there is no food, no shelter, no security, no clothes, no medicine … nothing. When we have nothing, we feel desperate and anxious. When we need things and we have no money, we feel the need to ask someone for help. The extreme case of asking is begging.

But why then do beggars lie? They do this to cover up for their inadequacies; their shortcomings. They can’t find work, and feel useless. They hide behind lies to get something … anything … to survive another day. Their lies are self-serving and cannot hurt those who are being lied to. The lies are harmless. In South African cities there are many different cultures. In each culture and in every language, there is poverty: someone is suffering; someone is asking; someone is begging.

And the poet sees them all … as he walks on by.


Poetry At Its Roots

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I love good poetry. I can spend hours at a time reading excellent poetry, particularly reading it aloud to taste its musicality and experience the words in three dimensions. Few among us are capable of writing good poetry, though. I know because I’ve also seen my share of bad poetry. As an editor, I occasionally am called upon to edit a series of poems. I approach such an opportunity cautiously, for I have come across few contemporary writers who can actually write good poetry.

Well, maybe I should modify that last sentence: I have found few contemporary writers (except for those already published and/or famous) who have written good poetry. Maybe they could write good poetry if they had a better understanding of how to go about it. Anyone who can communicate through poetry has achieved the ultimate writing craft, so creating a fine poem is a worthy goal.

I’m not a poet. I am a connoisseur of fine poetry. I can help readers fully enjoy a good poem, and I can help aspiring poets dramatically improve their craft, but I don’t claim to be a poet myself. Still, I’ve had enough success with inexperienced poets that I think I have some insight to offer, and that’s the point of this article. If you feel, deep inside, that you could write a really fine poem, you probably can. If you sense an inner need to write effective poetry, then you probably should try. If you have not yet mastered that art, perhaps you simply need some guidance.

Verse is not Necessarily Poetry

Let me first distinguish between poetry and verse, because I believe that is where most people go wrong. Verse, you see, is the musical arrangement of words for a melodious or metrical effect. We all like to play with rhyme and economy of words and imagery. If you take a well-known tune and write new lyrics to celebrate your best friend’s birthday, you’ve written verse, not a poem. If you hit upon a rhythm and a clever theme and then arrange funny or mushy phrases around that rhythm and theme so that they rhyme (or nearly do), you’ve written verse, not poetry. What you read in greeting cards, 99.9% of the time, is verse, not poetry.

That, of course, begs the question: What is poetry? In my opinion, poetry often (but not always) includes all the characteristics of verse, but it has so much more, insight and emotion being the two most critical factors. So, can you take a little piece of verse, inject a bit of insight and a dash of emotion, and end up with a poem? I don’t think so. Maybe that’s why the world is immersed in verse but poetry-poor. Many of us can write verse; I have done it often. Few successfully write a poem, however. The reason for that phenomenon, I believe, is the sacred and mysterious process of birthing a really good poem. While verse can spawn from a scrap of music or a second-rate jingle, poetry is born of things precious and rare.

Insight Born of Experience

A true poem begins with an experience. We all have a thousand experiences a day so, I suppose, each of us comes across the raw material of a thousand poems everyday. Why don’t those poems materialize? Why do a handful of such experiences evolve, a little later, as cute or clever verse, but most just disappear? What transforms an experience into a poem? Consider what the icons of poetry have done with a jar of cold plums, a red wheelbarrow, a stone fence, grass. Truly, it is not the experience itself that ignites the poem. I see stone fences everyday, yet I’ve never written anything to rival “Mending Wall.” Most wheelbarrows I come across are not red, but, even if they were, would I realize how much depends on a wheelbarrow? Have you or I ever seen Chicago as Carl Sandburg saw it, “husky… brawling… city of the big shoulders,” or a snake as Emily Dickinson saw it, “a narrow fellow in the grass”? I’ve heard a fly buzz – I’ve heard many flies buzz – yet I’ve never associated the sound with my own death. Hmmm…

What transforms an experience into the stuff of poetry, I am quite certain, is the insight the experience brings. And here I use that word very literally: to see into the experience. Thousands of people ride ferries everyday, but Edna St. Vincent Millay saw the ferry-riding experience as a metaphor for her crowd’s Roaring Twenties lifestyle: “We were very young, we were very merry/ We rode back and forth all night on the ferry.” And so her experience, offering insight, became the stuff of poetry. Thousands of us, at various points in our lives, look at spiders weaving their webs, but it was Walt Whitman who took insight from “a noiseless, patient spider” as he did from a starry night sky viewed right after a boring lecture on astronomy. A poem begins, very often, with the insight gained from experience, but it is insight so crystal clear that you know it to the depths of your heart and the soles of your feet. Often that insight comes as suddenly as a punch to the jaw; it can even take your breath away.

A Psychic or Emotional Response

Most all mature adults have gained insight from their experiences, yet few of us write poems about those insightful experiences. So what comes next? We generally learn from experience, grow from the insight therewith provided, and evolve as persons, but do we write poetry about it? No, and I’ll bet many of us could! For reasons I will not try to identify, the vast majority of us fail to respond to insightful experiences as poets respond: A poet is immersed in the insight, filled up with the experience, bowled over by the new understanding, consumed by the emotion, inspired by the possibilities. So that, I believe, is the next step: an emotional or psychic response to an insightful experience. Writers of verse probably skip that step.

The highly charged response of the poet does not have to be a lesson learned. It might be the awakening of a new, hitherto unfelt emotion, or a deeper level of pleasure from the same old experience, or a sense of wonder or humor or understanding. The point is that poets stop to fill themselves with the feelings and thoughts – fill themselves up until something has to give. And that takes us to the fourth step in the birth of a poem: the need to express the new insight, emotion, understanding or desire. Only when we are filled up do we have the urgent need to express.

Still, we haven’t yet reached the crux of the poetry issue. Many people are moved by an experience, do take the time to feel the emotions and insights, and do produce some sort of communication directed at the rest of humanity. What is produced is often prose: a letter to the editor (or, on a more personal basis, a letter to a relative or old friend); a screaming, raging email message; a carefully composed essay; a glowing testimonial. All prose. Others now make a stab at poetry, and they produce things made out of words, arranged in stanzas, desperate to communicate, not quite there. All prosaic. What does the successful poet do differently?

Connecting Insight to Image

The poet makes a connection that others fail to make, and that connection gives genesis to the seed of the new poem. In his or her need to communicate this overwhelming experience, the poet seeks and finds an image to which this new insight can be compared – something of the everyday world, an object or event or process the reader will recognize as familiar, understand, and readily grasp. Now we have the birth of figurative language, the metaphor or simile or personification that lies at the heart of the new message. In a sense, this comparison, never before made, is the message. This is the new connection, a deeper level of insight, a creative way of seeing; without this, a would-be poem is merely words. So, when we read that “the fog comes in on little cat feet” we share a unique connection made by a poet who saw fog in a whole new way. Now the poet (in this case Carl Sandburg) has found the vehicle of expression: a unique, creative comparison that instantly brings his experience to our doorstep. We all know something of little cat feet. Sandburg’s connection between the fog and the little cat feet is an act of creative genius.

Musicality Enhances Insight and Image

That creative accomplishment, however, is not yet the making of a poem. Now the other elements of poetry come into play. Economy of words is, of course, the hallmark of poetry, the feature that most differentiates it from prose. And when words are used economically, there is not a word, not a letter, not a sound to spare. Every carefully selected word has a sterling ability to convey the sound and sense of a particular facet of the idea. Next come the musical qualities: rhyme, rhythm and meter, repetition, alliteration. Now, all of these forces can be developed simultaneously, but this is the important thing to keep in mind: the insight comes first, then the image or vehicle, and only then the words and music. Those verbal tools must elucidate the insight and support the image.

Words and music without insight and image produce only verse (or drivel, sometimes). The same is true for cute similes and metaphors embedded into the text for no other reason than poetry’s traditional use of similes and metaphors. Figurative language that is not part and parcel of the message – born of the insight or inherent in the fundamental image – is only window dressing, sure to fade as the seasons change. The same can be said of forced rhyme, lines manipulated all out of proportion to make the ending sounds alike: mere decoration, but not the stuff of poetry. Using onomatopoeia because you can, or personifying an inanimate object because you can – these are techniques of verse, not of poetry. All the verbal and musical components of a good poem serve the central insight and interlock naturally with the central image. That is poetry.

It would now only make sense, I believe, to present to you a poem that I think is outstanding in every one of these ways, and so I shall. I choose “Gold Glade” by Robert Penn Warren, not a popular poem (although a famous author), but one that stirs my heart and my intellect with every reading, so near to the perfect poem it is. I should warn you: it takes several focused readings to gather it all in.

Gold Glade

Wandering, in autumn, the woods of boyhood,

Where cedar, black, thick, rode the ridge,

Heart aimless as rifle, boy-blankness of mood,

I came where ridge broke, and the great ledge,

Limestone, set the toe high as treetop by dark edge

Of a gorge, and water hid, grudging and grumbling,

And I saw, in mind’s eye, foam white on

Wet stone, stone wet-black, white water tumbling,

And so went down, and with some fright on

Slick boulders, crossed over. The gorge-depth drew night on,

But high over high rock and leaf-lacing, sky

Showed yet bright, and declivity wooed

My foot by the quietening stream, and so I

Went on, in quiet, through the beech wood:

There, in gold light, where the glade gave, it stood.

The glade was geometric, circular, gold,

No brush or weed breaking that bright gold of leaf-fall.

In the center it stood, absolute and bold

Beyond any heart-hurt, or eye’s grief-fall.

Gold-massy in air, it stood in gold light-fall,

No breathing of air, no leaf now gold-falling,

No tooth-stitch of squirrel, or any far fox bark,

No woodpecker coding, or late jay calling.

Silence: gray-shagged, the great shagbark

Gave forth gold light. There could be no dark.

But of course dark came, and I can’t recall

What county it was, for the life of me.

Montgomery, Todd, Christian-I know them all.

Was it even Kentucky or Tennessee?

Perhaps just an image that keeps haunting me.

No, no! in no mansion under earth,

Nor imagination’s domain of bright air,

But solid in soil that gave it its birth,

It stands, wherever it is, but somewhere.

I shall set my foot, and go there.

Robert Penn Warren

A Life-changing Experience, not Mere Technique

I had read this beauty at least six times before I ever realized the absolutely perfect rhyme scheme: ababb. Attention is so focused on the discovery of the achingly beautiful tree that the rhyme is barely noticeable. The simile so perfectly complements the feeling and actions of the speaker that it hardly calls attention to itself: “heart aimless as rifle.” The “grudging and grumbling” water is so naturally personified that it does not shout “personification!” The same can be said of this subtle personification: “where cedar, black, thick, rode the ridge.” The metaphors are both brilliant and inherent: “leaf-lacing… bright gold of leaf-fall… heart-hurt… eye’s grief-fall.”

“Gold Glade” is a wonder of musicality, yet those techniques always serve the insight and image. The alliteration (“rode the ridge… boy-blankness… ledge/Limestone… foam white on/Wet stone, stone wet-black, white water tumbling… glade gave) and assonance (“woods of boyhood… grudging and grumbling… mind’s eye… glade gave… far fox bark… late jay”) serve to communicate the wonder of the unparalleled tree-beauty, not to call attention to their own cleverness or to intellectualize a barren line.

Reading this poem is to vicariously experience the speaker’s boyhood discovery of a tree so powerfully lovely that it has haunted him and drawn him back throughout his lifetime. As precisely and musically worded as Robert Penn Warren’s poem is, it is absolutely the recounting of a life-changing experience rather than a display of words or poetic techniques. There can be no doubt this poem was born of the discovery of a serene glade, filled with the golden rays of the setting sun, dominated by an oak tree of breathtaking magnificence. From that experience developed the birth of a superior poem.


African American Poetry – The Players, The Times, The Themes, The Struggle!

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African American Poetry is a form of literature that is basically an expressive and colorful form of the emotions of the black and enslaved populations of America. Many of the themes of early African American Poetry revolve around issues such as slavery, murder, familial problems, and lifestyle. The tone of most of the literary works of this era entertain an emotional tone rather than reserved philosophical style. This allows the poems to be more personal and engaging. The journey of African Americans in America from the days of slavery until now can be traced through the history of these poems.

This genre found its roots during the 18th and 19th centuries with poets such as Phillis Wheatley and orator Frederick Douglass, reaching an early high point with the Harlem Renaissance. It continues today with well known authors such as Toni Morrison, Maya Angelou and Walter Mosley. Many of issues explored in African American literature are the role of African Americans within the larger American society, African American culture, racism, slavery, and equality.

One of the first most famous African American authors was poet Phillis Wheatley. She was well known for her book Poems on Various Subjects in 1773 which was published three years before American independence. Originally from Africa, Wheatley was captured and sold as a slave at the tender age of seven. She was then brought to America and owned by a Boston merchant.

At first she spoke no English, but by the time she was sixteen she had mastered the language. Her poetry won praises from many great leaders of the American Revolution, including George Washington. Despite this, many white people found it hard to believe that an African American woman could be so intelligent as to write poetry. Thus, Wheatley found herself in court trying to prove that she actually wrote her own poetry. Perhaps Wheatley’s successful defense can be regarded as a true recognition of African American literature.

Jupiter Hammon was another early African American author who was actually considered the first published Black writer in America for his poem “An Evening Thought: Salvation by Christ with Penitential Cries” in early 1761. He was well remembered for his Address to the Negroes of the State of New York in 1786. This speech also planted the idea of a gradual emancipation as a way of ending slavery. According to public records, Hammon remained a slave until his death.

Another great poet was Paul Laurence Dunbar who was known for his poem, “The Poet”. He wrote this a mere three years before his untimely death in 1906 at the age of 34. Dunbar was not only the most famous African American poet, but was also one of the most famous American poets, of his time. He was celebrated for his folk poetry about African Americans which was written in dialect–the “jingle in a broken tongue.”


The Thematic Analysis of The Poem "Do-Gooders" By Olu Obafemi

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The poem titled DO-GOODERS was written by Olu Obafemi to portray the weaknesses and atrocities of the religionists who instead of being the last hope of a common man are threats to people’s life. He tries to condemn the attitudes of the religionists who are using their position as a man or messenger of God to blindfold the people and exploit them. They use their position to tell people lies and demand exorbitantly from them; they deny them their belongings and turn those wretched (lines 14-17).

The central theme of the poem is CONDEMNATION. Olu Obafemi tries to expose what is happening in our present environment where people dabbled into church, mosque or palm grooves only to save themselves from the escalating unemployment problem. When the people eventually discover these anomalies of the people of God, they tend to be aggressive. This has led to desertion of many churches, many mosques have been damned and some grooves are no more in existence (lines 10-13)

The poet shows his anger or agony when he said that Horror begets horror, to nullify horror, meaning that whenever these type of people are caught, they must be dealt with without an iota of mercy, just as thieves, tied to the stakes, and set on fire (lines 18 and 19). He emphasized that pity should not be allowed to come in because they have destroyed many lives already; many have been turned to wretched beings, with bloated stomach, smelling like the stinking gutters and sucked thin (lines 1-5).

The poet ended it by lamenting saying, Woe be on them, who cheat in the name of God, even an unending woe.


Let’s examine jus two (2): Poetic License and the figures of speech used in the poem.

Language used (Poetic License)

Poetic license is the permission given to a poet to use unconventional language i.e. free to use language in whatever way it pleases him in order to achieve his desires. He can violate the grammaticality of language.

They include in this poem the following:

1. Bloated – swollen in an unpleasant way (line 1)

2. Hoot – funny situation of a person/short loud laugh of a person (line 5)

3. Flatulent – sound important in the way that exaggerate truth (line 9)

4. Damnable – bad or annoying (line 12)

5. Stakes – host on which somebody to be burnt is first tie (line 18)

6. Wretched – extremely bad or unpleasant (line 13)

7. Flakes – small pieces of something larger

8. Blazed – mount brightly and strongly

9. Do-gooders: those who do good/believed to be doing good

Figures of Speech

Expressions used to polish any piece of writing and to embellish it in a poetic ornament so as to make it elaborate, vivid, picturesque and interesting (Roy Omoni)

1. Assonance:

Line 1: bloated stomachs

Line 7: horror begets horror

Line 19: blazed in flames and flakes

2. Consonance:

Line 7: horror begets horror

Line 19: blazed in flames and flakes

3. Alliteration:

Line 4: of sprawling skeletons

Line 7: horror begets horror

Line 19: blazed in flames and flakes

4. Repetition:

Line 7 & 8: horror begets horror to nullify horror

5. Rhyme:

Line 18 & 19: must be tied to stakes

blazed in flames and flakes

6. Enjambment:

Line 7 & 8: horror begets horror to nullify horror

Line 3 & 4: the naked ribs of sprawling skeletons


5 Important Factors To Be Considered While Analyzing A Poem

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Poetry is a great part of the literature and owes acclaim due to its beautiful language with imagery built therein to sprinkle ideas with poetic splendor. It conveys some message to people or reflects the mood of the poet.

Analyzing a poem demands creativity, imagination, sharp eye for details and a latent understanding of the inner layers of meaning in the poem.The following factors are to be considered while analyzing a poem.

Overall texture of the poem

Not just one reading would suffice to understand the meaning of a poem. Several readings are required to understand the message, overall texture and meaning of the poem. It is advisable to read aloud first, give a second glance and then read slowly to get into the meaning of words. Without understanding the overall tone and meaning of the poem, it is hard to understand the message conveyed therein.

Tone and mood

It can be melancholy, happiness, jubilation, solitary musings or regret or repentance-the mood of the speaker or the poet has to be fixed so that the poem can be interpreted on those lines.


patterns make a poem effective for reading. It also helps ease understanding of the poem.

Imagery is the wonderful language that picturesquely describes the poet’s thoughts and brings before us the world he wants to delineate.

Figures of speech like simile, metaphor portrayed in a poem is to be noted down for appreciating the beauty of the poem and the imagination of the poet. At the same time, the symbolic meaning they convey should be interpreted in proper language to give a fine touch to the analysis of the poem.


Poetry normally doesn’t convey the theme directly and it is very subtle in getting across the theme through words and scenes that are picturesque with hidden meanings. Rarely one finds poems which are direct in their message. Through repeated readings, one can understands the theme of a poem. A search for the cultural background or personnel details of the poet could help a person in fixing the theme with ease.

Getting familiar with many other works of the poet will increase one’s knowledge of the poet’s recurrent themes and preferences. For example, when a student examines a poem by Emily Dickinson, he could analyze her thoughts about death with a better perspective had he known her other poems.

Symbols and repetitive words

Certain words may be repetitive with specific meaning in a context. For example, symbolic words in Robert Frost’s poems are the conveyers of the poet’s philosophy of life as in ‘After Apple Picking’, ‘Road Not Taken ‘or ‘Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening’.


It is an overall understanding of a poem with an innate poetic sensibility that would help a person deciphers the language of the poet in the proper sense and decode his message convincingly. Getting guidelines from teachers and tutors would help students analyze the assigned poems in an effective manner and win fabulous scores.

Online English tutors are a great succor for students in analyzing poems of complex structure. Their adept skills in reading in among lines to pick out the inner meanings of a poem to help students take a right stand in analyzing a poem. It would be great exposure to students if they access online tutoring services for critical analysis of poems in their homework.


How to Write a Critical Appreciation of a Poem

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Critical appreciation of a poem is defined as the critical reading of a poem. The meaning of its words, its rhyme, scheme, the speaker, figures of speech, the references to other works (intertextuality), the style of language, the general writing style of the poet ( if mentioned), the genre, the context, the tone of the speaker and such other elements make up the critical reading or appreciation. It does not mean criticising the poem. A critical appreciation helps in a better understanding of the verse.

  • Meaning- Read the poem more than once to get a clear idea of what the speaker is trying to say. Look up the meanings of difficult or unusual words in a thesaurus. The title of the poem is a key to the general meaning and summary of the thought presented. A poem might be about lost love, ‘Lucy’ (Wordsworth).
  • Rhyme Scheme- Find the rhyming words. These occur at the end of each line. Rhyming words might be present in the middle of the line also. Mark the rhyme scheme. For example, if rhyming words occur at the end of each line alternatively in a poem of 4 lines, the rhyme scheme will be ‘a b a b’. In the poem, ‘Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening’ by Robert Frost, the second stanza goes like this:

“My little horse must think it queer

To stop without a farmhouse near

Between the woods and frozen lake

The darkest evening of the year… “

In these lines, the rhyme scheme is ‘a a b b’

In several poems, there are no rhymes. Such a poem is called a blank verse.

  • Speaker- Identify the speaker of the poem. It can be a child, an elderly, a shepherd, a swordsman, a student, a milkmaid, a sailor, an animal or even an object like a chair or a place like a house or a mountain. Each Speaker will speak differently.
  • Setting- Every poem has a specific setting. It might be a ship or a modern condominium. The setting is the background of the poem and contributes to its meaning. For example, the setting of a pastoral is very likely to be a grazing ground for a flock of ship. The setting of Eliot’s ‘Preludes’ is a modern city with its people leading a mechanical life. The words also convey the same sense.

“And short square fingers stuffing pies,

And evening newspapers, and eyes,

Assured of certain certainties… “

  • Context- The context gives us the time and location of the poem. It is what prompted the poem. The context might be an event of great political significance like the French Revolution. It prompted P.B. Shelley’s famous, “Ode to the West Wind.” The poem beautifully upholds the spirit of the revolution and heralded the dawn of a new age.
  • Language- The language of a poem is the very vehicle of its thoughts and ideas. Study the language in terms of the use of figures of speech, its tone, use of loan words or archaic words, length of sentences, the rhythm (meters- iambic, Trochaic or any other), number of lines etc. Note the introduction of new ideas and mark the place where it occurs. For example, in the poem, ‘The lamb’ by William Blake, the lamb refers to both the baby sheep, the little boy who is the speaker and the Lamb of God. Here the word, “lamb” is a metaphor.
  • Intertextuality- While writing the critical appreciation of a poem, we notice that another poem is alluded or looked back upon. This is called intertextuality or reference. For example, Chaucer’s ‘Canterbury Tales’ allude to Boccaccio’s ‘Decameron’ in its structure of people narrating stories during a journey.
  • Genre- Genre roughly means the category of the poem. Each genre has set rules and characteristics. For example, a very long narrative poem, running into a several thousands of lines, dealing with divine figures or demi-gods or great generals of the past and describing a terrible war or an incredible journey on which the fate of humanity rests can be termed as epic. For example, the ‘Iliad’ (Homer), ‘Paradise Lost’ (J. Milton) and such poems. A short poem of 14 lines expressing intimate emotions is a ‘sonnet’. For example, ‘Let me not to the marriage of true minds’ (Shakespeare) is a sonnet extolling real love and devotion. There are several genre- satire, mock-epic, ballad, lyric, ode, parody etc.


The Good Morrow by John Donne – Critical Summary

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The poem “The Good Morrow” is amongst the best of metaphysical love poetry produced by John Donne. The poem begins with a question asked to the two lovers, the poet and his beloved; Donne asks “what thou and I did till we love?” The question is meaningful and needs no answer because the clearly indicates that the life before falling into love was no more than “country pleasures” like that of a child sucking his mother’s breast for survival. The child in sucking the mother’s breast is never aware of the world around him.

The poet goes on to compare himself and his beloved with the use of a conceit, far-fetched metaphor, of “Seven Sleepers’ Den” to express that their entire life was nothing more than unconscious life. Had they enjoyed any sort of pleasures and experienced joys, those were nothing but imagination. The poet opens up his heart in the praise of his beloved as:

“If ever any beauty I did see;

Which I desired, and got, ’twas but a dream of thee.”

The poet says good morrow to the “waking souls” of himself and his beloved because their past life, before they met, was all shadow and darkness of sleep. It is now, after meeting his beloved, that the poet feels his waking soul. The poet believes that a little love can convert even a small room into an entire world.

The poet wishes to ignore the world around him because he wants to be focused on his beloved alone. Therefore the sea discoverers may discover new worlds, maps be spread, but the poet must “possess one world” of the unity of lovers union. Donne creates a lovely equation here i.e. a lover is equal to beloved and the beloved is equal to lover. In other words, Donne’s mathematics would display the result of:

1 lover + 1 beloved = 1 love


1+1= 1

This is the equation which leads to the merger of lovers’ being into oneness:

“My face in thine eye, thine in mine appears”.

The poet even goes on to declare the two lovers as “two better hemispheres”.

John Donne has convinced us of the magical charms of love and the deeds of lovers which have the power to transform normal beings and casual acts into the evergreen stories; here the story is of a lover and beloved that has formed oneness of being through the pure love which is beyond physical.

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The Clarity Pyramid – Poem to Practice Word Choice Techniques

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The Clarity Pyramid

The Clarity Pyramid is a recently created short poetry form. Like most short forms, the key to success is to choose your words wisely. Because of this, it is a great option for you to practice word choice techniques.

The first line is the keystone of the entire poem. All other lines exist to further support and define this single word. In other words, they clarify this word for the reader.


Jerry P. Quinn, a financial strategist and poet, is the architect of the Clarity Pyramid. He constructed the poetry form in 2002.


—Three stanzas which are made up of two triplets and a final clarifying line.

—The foundation of the clarity pyramid is the first line, which is a single syllable word.

—The first line must be in capital letters.

—Each successive line is increased in syllabic count by one – except the forth line, which increases by two.

Form Structure:


2 syllables

3 syllables

5 syllables

6 syllables

7 syllables

“8 syllables”

—There are also criteria in the construction of each line.

Remember, the first line must be a single, one-syllable word and must also be capitalized. This line has the added function of being the title of the poem. Here is what you must keep in mind as you build rest of the lines.

Line two and line three must clarify or be synonyms of the word in the first line. All the lines in the second stanza must describe a life event linked to the word in the first line. The eighth and final line must be in quotations and further describe the first line.

That particular rule bothers me, and would be one of the first rules I would break with my poetry contractor’s license. I don’t like using the quotes unless I am – well, quoting someone or using them in order to show dialogue.

COULD HAVES or What’s The Poet’s Choice In All This?

—You may choose to center align the poem or not. Many poets choose center alignment in order to create a visual pyramid, but it isn’t a requirement.

—The use of rhyme and meter, although I wouldn’t recommend either for this short form.

—What language your first word is in. Actually, what language your entire poem is in, but since I am an English speaking poet – I will speak from this perspective.

NEW VARIATION 1: I love words and thought it would be interesting to take a word in another language for the first word and then use the rest of the poem to “clarify” it in English. (This could also be a good opportunity for non-native English speakers to take an English word and use the rest of the poem to “clarify” it in their native tongue.) Because many languages use a lot of syllables in their words, this might be the time to take the Clarity Pyramid to the next level and create another new variation (See below).

NEW VARIATION 2: Follow the rules set in place, but change the syllabic count to word count.


Jerry P. Quinn has won several poetry contests and had many of his poems published.


Heer Damodar

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Heer Damodar — revived in translation

The love-legend of Heer-Ranjha has been narrated by as many as 42 different poets. No other epic in world literature is known to have achieved this distinction. Among the surviving versions of the story, Damodar’s Heer is probably the oldest.

The gifted poet has left little behind about himself except the repeated chants such as “name Damodar, caste Gulhati” in the mesmerising tale, which has been the subject of numerous movies and stage plays over the decades on either side of the Pakistan-India divide. The storyline, characters, tribes and places have almost been the same in every telling with minor changes. For instance, Waris Shah names Heer’s mother as Malki but Damodar calls her Kundi.

Researchers could barely unearth scant details about the writer of this variant of Heer such as that he was a Sikh named Damodar Das Arora, a resident of Jhang, where Heer’s grave is still venerated as a shrine. His claim that the legend took place during the reign of Emperor Akbar and that he saw it unfold before his own eyes is dismissed by critics as nothing more than poetic fancy. Among other things, they say, the vocabulary he has used reveals he lived sometime in the late 18th century or early 19th century. Damodar and his work were virtually unknown till 1927 when the first of his three manuscripts of Heer was discovered in Jhang.

Though the Waris Shah version of Heer has eclipsed all other narrations, and hence not much read and appreciated, Heer Damodar is distinctly remarkable in certain ways.

“Damodar’s Heer is written like a fast-paced screenplay. There are no pauses or descriptive flights of imagination. The tale moves with great speed. Damodar builds in an immense amount of his knowledge of human nature and of the issues in the society of rural Punjab into the tale and its characters,” says Muzaffar Ghaffar in his preface to the book, which is a link in the Within reach – masterworks of Punjabi poetry series. “He is a master storyteller who always keeps the reader’s interest alive. Indeed his Heer should have become a great favourite of professional storytellers, but… it is virtually unknown in the oral tradition. And yet there appears to be extraneous material in the three manuscripts which are available. Such corruptions usually only occur with much-told, orally transmitted tales. This is another enigma about Heer Damodar.”

When we evaluate Muzaffar Ghaffar’s Within reach series, we really run short of adjectives. Call it fantastic, grand, great, marvelous, monumental, phenomenal, wondrous… none of the word would seem a hyperbole. He has produced Bulleh Shah (two volumes), Baba Fareed Ganjshakar, Baba Nanak, Sachal Sarmast, Sultan Bahu, Khwaja Ghulam Fareed and Shah Husain (three volumes). Even a single volume on Khwaja Ghulam Fareed in Urdu fetched a scholar a Pride of Performance Award during the Musharraf regime. The writer, I withhold his name lest I seem to be slighting his contribution to Punjabi language and literature, really deserved the award. But I firmly believe that each of Muzaffar sahib’s books merits as much recognition. His other works, five English poetry collections; How the governments work; The brain, the body, the soul, the mind; and Unity in diversity – a vision for Pakistan, are also enlightening and highly readable.

What does he have in those books of the Punjabi sufi poetry that is rare? He has taken a vast selection of each of the great masters’ works first in Nastaliq and did its poetic translation in Gurmukhi. As with these books he particularly tries to reach the English-reading lovers of Punjabi classic poetry across the world, he renders it in Romanised script, translates the poetry into English verse (only one line for each line), explains the meanings of difficult words and then has a detailed discussion on those lines in lucid language. To make the reader’s job easier still, he gives an elaborate glossary at the end of each volume. Only a random quote form Heer Damodar may illustrate the point:

“The allure comes now. Heer Syal has grown up. Her beauty and demeanour are both affirmed by telling us that her feet don’t touch the ground. (In this phrase the word zamin is usually pronounced zimin). She skims on the ground with grace and beauty, she is almost in flight. This description may be preparing us for haughtiness in Heer. Such nonchalance of being oblivious to her surroundings is surely the result of an irrefutable self-knowledge that she is beautiful. (And beauty has its own power). The poet masterfully gives a grounding in her deportment by telling us that her feet did not touch the ground. This is so for good reason, not just an innate arrogance….”

Muzaffar’s interest in what is his true labour of love seems to be increasing with his growing age and falling health. His last book Shah Husain was in three volumes. The book under review has four, the whole of Heer Damodar. His next venture, Heer Waris Shah which is being given final touches, will have six volumes. And one may hope that the process will continue and what might become extinct in original text would come alive in his excellent translation.

Considering the high quality production, the cost might be justifiable. But how would common people interested in Punjabi sufi poetry would access and benefit from this book is a question that needs to be addressed.

Heer Damodar: Within Reach (Four volumes)

By Muzaffar A. Ghaffaar

ISBN 978-969-0-02173-1

Ferozsons (Pvt) Ltd

60, Shahrah-i-Quaid-i-Azam Lahore;

277, Peshawar Road, Rawalpindi;

Mehran Heights, Main Clifton Road,


Four-volume boxed set Rs3,995


Claude Mckay – From a Patois Poet in Jamaica to Harlem Helping in Reinvigorating Black Literature

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One of the most distinguished poets of our time Claude McKay was born in Sunny Ville, Jamaica, British West Indies in September 15, 1889, as the youngest of eleven children of his peasant parents in Jamaica, Thomas Francis and Ann Elizabeth (Edwards) McKay. McKay’s family was fairly well off having received land from the bride’s and the groom’s fathers.He. is mostly known by his much-quoted sonnet: “If we Must Die” which was popularized during World War II by British Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill.

Raised in Sunny Ville, in Clarendon Hills Parish by a compassionate mother and a stern father who passed on to his children much of the Ashanti customs and traditions of Ghana where he hailed from, his poetry demonstrates his undying attachment to his roots and a deep affection for Clarendon where he was born and raised. Such nostalgia for Jamaica was demonstrated even in his later poems when abroad.

His early dialect verse makes nostalgic references to the Clarendon Hills. His father, Thomas McKay, had always shared with his children the story of his own father’s enslavement seeking thus to instill in them a suspicion of whites that would become particularly evident in the writings of his son. McKay’s profound respect for the sense of community encountered among rural Jamaican farmers and a somewhat skeptical attitude toward religion encouraged by his older brother, an elementary school teacher, left an indelible mark on his literary work.

At seventeen, McKay through a government sponsorship became apprenticed to a cabinet-maker in Brown’s Town. At nineteen, moving on to Kingston, the capital, he joined the Police Force where his gentle disposition received its first great jolt. For then West Indian Policemen were recruited more for their muscle than their brain, which they were expected to celebrate and honor every hour whilst on the beat.

The Police Force was therefore not the best place for one like McKay who was always upset by human suffering. Two collections of poetry that he published in 1912 emerged largely out of his experience as a constabulary which he found along with urban life in general to be alienating. He felt uncomfortably located between the Jamaican elite and the great mass of the urban poor. Many of the concerns that would occupy much of his later work such as the opposition of the city and the country, the problems of exile, and the relation of the black intellectuals to their common folks appear first in these poems.

His second volume of poems of dialect verse Constab Ballads accurately records such experiences. His first volume of poems Songs of Jamaica was written only to relieve his bitter feelings of guilt while in the force. He calmly keeps reprimanding those responsible for social injustices to his people. To relieve his feelings, he sought to write of redeeming features in the dark picture. His gentle nature led him to pity his people’s suffering and to protest against it. He thus got compelled to relieve himself by celebrating their cheerfulness and other positive qualities. Their interest and vitality as human beings is enriched by their cheerfulness and good humor which vibrates in spite of generally dispiriting conditions.

His sympathy for the criminals, whom he often considered the victims of an unjust colonial order, could not allow him to work as a police constable beyond a year. During the ensuing two years back at Clarendon Parish he was encouraged to write Jamaican Dialect Poetry by Walter Jekyll, an English collector of island folklore with whom McKay had forged a close relationship. Jekyll had introduced him to English poets such as Milton and Pope.

In 1912 McKay published two volumes of poetry Songs of Jamaica and Constab Ballads. Songs of Jamaica with an introduction and melodies by Jekyll to celebrate the unpretentious nature and the simplicity of the Jamaican peasants who are closely bonded to their native soil. Constab Ballads centres more on Kingston and the contempt and exploitation suffered there by dark-skinned blacks at the hands of whites and mulattos. These books made McKay the first black to receive the medal of the Jamaican Institute of Arts and Sciences with a substantial cash award which he was to use to fund his education at Booker T. Washington’s Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, the United States.

He seemed to have regretted later having been “an agent of colonial oppression in a most brutal manner.” In both works McKay made extensive use of the Jamaican language, a patois of English.

When in 1912 McKay left Jamaica for the U.S.A., it was inevitable that this should lead to an eruption of Negro verse from his pen. For here was a man with a proud sense of his race, who had seen his people suffering in Jamaica and had fled an evergreen land with its luxuriantly waving palms bending to the force of the persistent tropical winds in quest of more opportunities in a more open world.

And he goes to America to meet unimaginable Negro suffering. But rather than return to the less demanding life of Jamaica, he felt a compulsion to remain and join the struggle, for he was already bound with the American blacks in their bondage. And no wonder. For McKay’s early years in New York were a time of growing racial bitterness, with the stiffening of the South. Negro disillusionment with Booker T. Washington and a consequent adjustment of the Negro attitude; the increase in white hysteria and violence, which was to become even harsher after the war which had been fought by them as well as in defence of democracy and the rise of Garveyism and the hostility between Garvey and the N.A.A.C.P. and others – all such factors combined to bring about the Negro Renaissance, of which McKay became an integral part.

McKay however maintained for a long time a sober reaction to his new and disturbing environment. Determined to maintain the dignity of his poet’s calling, he refused to allow the quality of his reaction as a poet to be warped. He equally refused to allow his ambitions and status as a human being to be destroyed. His verses remained virile keeping with the prevailing atmosphere then, for those early years in America were really crucial years for the Black cause. But the virility of his verse is based on more than mere bitterness. It includes and depends on a certain resilience – or stubborn humanity traceable to McKay’s capacity to react to Negro suffering not just as a Negro, but as a human being. For as he maintains, the writer must always retain this capacity for a larger and more basic reaction as a human being to maintain his humanity.

In so doing he would avoid stunting his emotional growth and his stature as a human being. By identifying with his own race, a writer can proceed to that greater and more meaningful identification based on his humanity thus qualifying him to handle “racial” material.

“If We Must Die” immediately won popularity among Afroamericans, but the tone of the Negro critics was apologetic. To them a poem that voiced the deep-rooted instinct of self-preservation seemed merely a daring piece of impertinence. William S Braithwaite whom McKay described as the dean of Negro critics denounced him as a “violent and angry propagandist using his poetic gifts to clothe [arrogant] and defiant thoughts.” Whilst another disciple characterized him as “rebellious and vituperative.”

McKay goes on to point out the lapses and failings in respectable Negro opinion and criticism. This in turn brings in distortions and evasions in their representation and interpretation of the social realities informing the texts.

This brought about the apparent ambivalence in his love-hate relationship with America. Having had no illusions about America and the experience of its Negroes, he could at the same time pay her the tribute she deserved: one reflecting both its appeal as well as its bitter dejection. which he still endures as a necessary test of his resilience. In paying her this tribute he triumphs through his successful resistance to the threat of spiritual corrosion America’s ‘hate’ threatens to start within him. He could thus “stand within her walls with not a shred / Of terror, malice, not a word of fear.” Or as in “Through Agony,” he refuses to meet hate with hate. McKay thus continued his admiration for America despite the pain which she caused.

McKay sees not only the violence done to his own people, but that which the whites inflict on themselves as well. McKay is touched by misery: in “The Castaway” where, standing in a beautiful park, he is attracted not by the visible delights of nature but by “the castaways of earth,” the lonely and derelict, and turns away in misery. And it is mot clear and does not matter if they are black or white. In “Rest in Peace” his tender heart responds to the suffering of his people as he bids farewell to a departed friend.

McKay meets America’s challenge as man and poet. He meets the challenge which America’s hate sets for his humanity, and in his resistance he flings back his challenge to the forces of hate in “America.” As poet and man he enforces self-discipline which gives to his pain a dignity through which his verse sometimes transcends racial protest and becomes human protest.

McKay’s poetry certainly reflected another aspect of Negro reaction. This reaction is a new consciousness of the African connection following Marcus Garvey’s “Back to Africa” appeal. Intellectual Negro poetry was thus moving nearer to Africa spiritually. Garvey’s call for a black man’s religion was paralleled in sophisticated verse, So was his insistence on the past glories of the Negro race. So was the new pride he encouraged in Negro beauty and indeed in everything black, ideas of which he sometimes put into rather indifferent verse romanticizing Africa. McKay does the same in poems like “Harlem Shadows.”

When McKay arrived in America he enrolled in Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute with the intent to study agriculture disrupted his studies at Tuskegee Institute after only two months there and out of frustration. He enrolled at Kansas State College where he remained until 1914. Then after two years he resumed his career as a writer. He then went to new York where like Hughes he landed in Harlem. Whilst familiarizing himself with the literary scene in New York, he supported himself as a waiter and a porter from 1915 to 1918. His first break came in 1917 when Waldo Frank, a Jewish radical novelist and cultural critic published two of his sonnets “The Harlem Dancer” and “Invocation” in the December issue of The Seven Arts, a highly respected avant-garde magazine.

Between 1918 and 1919, McKay went abroad, visited England and lived in London for more than a year. There he compiled Spring in New Hampshire and Other Poems (1920). In 1919, on his return to New York, McKay joined the staff of Liberator magazine as associate editor and continued in that position until 1922, a period in which Max Eastman was then the editor. In 1922, McKay completed Harlem Shadows, a work of poetry considered a landmark of the Harlem Renaissance .

Short- story writer Frank Harris who published several of McKay’s poems in Pearson’s seems also to have made a major impression on the young poet. Unlike later black writers, McKay did not rely primarily on such periodicals as the Crisis and Opportunity as outlets for his verse. Though he wrote for black magazines occasionally, his literary ties were mostly with white publications, particularly with the leftist magazines based in Greenwich Village. Indeed, Max Eastman, the dean of the American literary left in the early twentieth century, published McKay’s “The Dominant White” in the April 1919 issue of The Liberator and nine more of his poems in the July issue. McKay later served as Eastman’s editorial staff contributing essays and reviews as well as poetry. He also befriended the famous white American poet Edward Arlington Robinson.

In 1919, he met George Bernard Shaw the British playwright whilst visiting England. G.K Ogden included nearly two dozen of McKay’s poems in the summer 1920 issue of Cambridge Magazine. I.A. Richards, one of the foremost English literary critics of the twentieth century, wrote the preface for McKay’s third book of verse, Spring in New Hampshire. According to Richards, McKay’s was among the best works being produced in Great Britain then.

On his return to the US, McKay continued to work for and contribute to a number of publications including that of his fellow Jamaican, Marcus Garvey, Negro World. The next year in 1922, he published his most important poetry collection, Harlem Shadows, thus virtually inaugurating the Harlem Renaissance. That book was a means through which he could place the militant “If We Must Die” inside of a book. This sonnet inspired by the racial violence that racked America in 1919 interpreted as a war-like cry by black radicals later served as one of the unofficial rallying cries of the Allied Forces in World War II, particularly after being recited in an emotionally charged speech before the House of Commons in response to Nazi Germany’s threat of invasion during World War II. Harlem Shadows marked a point of no return for several literary figures in Harlem who saw in McKay’s masterful treatment of racial issues evidence that a black writer’s insights into matters of race could serve on more than on occasional basis as suitable subjects for poetry.

That same year McKay visited the USSR. For being active in the social justice movement, McKay had become a Communist, believing that communism offered his cause greater hope. In 1923, in Moscow McKay addressed the Fourth Congress of the Communist International, as a black poet sympathetic to the Soviet cause. He achieved instant popularity among the proletariat as well as with Communist Party officials of the USSR. He was introduced to the Soviet leaders and had his poem “Petrograd May Day, 1923” published in translation in Pravda. Nevertheless, dismayed by the rigid ideological requirements of the Communist Party concerning all artistic productions, and perhaps a little tired of being treated as a novelty, and having to subjugate his art to political propaganda.

McKay traveled extensively abroad. After visits to Berlin and Paris, he settled down in France for a decade. He, however, remained in contact with the expatriate community of American writers.

Whilst in France his first novel Home to Harlem was produced in 1928 and work on his second Banjo was started. This last novel was completed during his travels in Spain and Morocco in 1929.

In these two novels of the 1920s McKay investigated how the concepts of race and class worked in a world dominated by capitalism and colonialism, and how cosmopolitan and rural black communities can be reconciled to each other.

Home to Harlem. the first bestseller novel by an African-American that won the Harmon Gold Award for Literature was reprinted five times in two months. It was more commercially successful than any novel by an African American author to that point. For it satisfied a consuming curiosity among Americans for information about the nightlife and the lowlife of Harlem. The novel examines two characters who literally take the reader on a tour of Harlem. Jake, an African American longshoreman, a hedonist, and a World War 1 veteran, deserts the army and returns to his beloved Harlem where he falls in love with a whore after she affectionately and surreptitiously returns the money he has paid her.

Through Jake we are introduced to Ray, a Haitian intellectual expatriate who worries constantly and feels isolated from the African American community as a result of his European education. He thus envies Jake who is more spontaneous and direct. As for Ray, his own desire to become a writer interferes with his enjoyment of life. The stern W.E.B. Du Bois was caustic in denouncing McKay’s presentation of Harlem, declaring that the book “for the most part nauseates me, and after the dirtier parts of its filth, I feel distinctly like taking a bath.” In response, McKay accused Du Bois of failing to make the proper distinction “between the task of propaganda and the work of art.”

Ray appears again in Banjo with another “natural” black character, the African American musician Lincoln Agrippa Daily. Set in the old French port of Marseilles, this second novel of McKay features a shifting group of black longshoremen sailors and drifters from Africa. As in his first, McKay articulates the need for the exiled black intellectual to return to his common black folks.

McKay’s third novel, Banana Bottom regarded generally as his finest fictional achievement takes the theme of the two previous novels even further. It depicts also a black individual in white western culture juxtaposing two opposing value systems – Anglo-Saxon civilization versus Jamaican folk culture. It tells the story of a Jamaican peasant girl, Bita Plant, who is rescued by white missionaries after being raped. In taking refuge with her new protectors she also becomes their prisoner with all their cultural values being foisted upon her and her introduction to their organized Christian educational system.

All this culminates in a bungled attempt to arrange her marriage to an aspiring priest. But Bita escapes from him as he attempts to rape her. But later overcoming the memory of rape she returns to the people in their native town of Jubilee where she eventually finds happiness – fulfillment. She ends up thus rejecting European culture and the Jamaican elite, choosing to rejoin the farming folk. This novel did not make much of an impression on the reading public then.

After twelve years wandering through Europe and North Africa, McKay returned to Harlem. Three years later in 1937 he completed his autobiography, A Long Way from Home, in a futile attempt to bolster his financial and literary fortunes. His interest in Roman Catholicism which was growing significantly during the 1940s after his repudiation of communism and officially joined the church in 1944. Though he wrote much new poetry then, he failed to publish any, a failure he blamed on the Communist Party in the U.S. ). His final work Selected Poems (1953) was published posthumously.

From 1932 until his death in Chicago 1948, McKay never left the United States. His interest in communism dwindled, according to Sister Mary Anthony: he had caught some of the spirit of that Catholic apostolate. And gradually he came to realize for himself that in Catholicism lay the hope of the race, indeed, of all the races. He was received into the Church in Chicago in October, 1944, by Bishop Bernard Sheil and is now on the staff of the Bishop Sheil School in that city.

By the mid 1940s McKay’s health had deteriorated and after enduring several illnesses, he died of heart failure in Chicago in 1948.

McKay’s work as a poet, novelist, and essayist has been widely seen as heralding several of the most significant moments in African American culture. His protest poetry was seen by many as the premier example of the “New Negro” spirit. His novels were sophisticated considerations of the problems and possibilities of Pan-Africanism at the end of the colonial era, influencing writers of African descent throughout the world. His early poetry in Jamaican patois and his fiction set in Jamaica are now seen as crucial to the development of a national Jamaican literature.


Publishing Poetry in Newspapers: Where to Submit

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According to Dana Gioia, Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, “Daily newspapers no longer review poetry. There is, in fact, little coverage of poetry or poets in the general press”. (Can Poetry Matter, Dana Gioia, 1991).

John Timpane, Philadelphia Inquirer Commentary page editor, adds: “Today, in my opinion, most newspaper people are afraid of poetry. They’re afraid readers won’t understand it, especially poetry they (these newspaper people) find “hard” or “experimental.” It amounts to a fear of the verbal. (Kelly Writers House, 1999).

One could argue Gioia and Timpane’s claims today, as print media seemingly loses ground, with technological advancements in communications, and as the art of poetry and its society becomes increasingly associated with academia, thereby making it less user-friendly to the general public.

However, there is, even today, life in the press. This article addresses the newspapers that currently

accept poetry from the people; listed below are the following newspapers in the United States, (compiled by Melanie Simms) that presently accept poetry submissions.

(If anyone has information on additional listings, please e-mail them to Melanie Simms at [email protected] or contact her at her website at []).

Current List of Newspapers that Publish Poetry:

Philadelphia Inquirer: Contact: John Timpane at [email protected]

The York Daily Record: Contact: Bill Diskin: [email protected]

The Oregonian: Ask for the Poetry Editor or call: 503-221-8100

The Santa Cruz Sentinel: Contact: 831-423-4242 and ask for the Poetry Editor

The Pittsburgh Post Gazette: Contact: 412-263-1100 and ask for the Poetry Editor

The Christian Science Monitor: Contact: 617-450-2000 and ask for the Poetry Editor

Clearly this current list is small (albeit still in development) which only forwards the concerns of the American public that “poetry in the newspapers” is a dying breed, but thanks to the “die-hard” efforts of these remaining voices in today’s newspapers, America still has hope to see the art rekindled.

Every poet and citizen who appreciates the art has an opportunity and obligation as well to assist. The newspapers depend upon its readers. Share your voices of concern so that the press realizes that Dana Gioia, John Timpane and your humble author are not alone in their desire to see poetry in the news again. You can do so by contacting your local poetry editor and requesting a poetry article be developed, or, if you’re creatively (and financially inclined) start a poetry column of your own from your own small newspaper press.

Let the voice of the people be heard in the art of poetry and thrive once again in the newspapers!


Critical Analysis of Pedro Pietri’s Poem Ode to a Grass Hopper

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The poem can be analyzed from several schools of thought. Let’s consider new criticism. New criticism focuses on the aesthetic aspect, the tropes used in it. An unexpected grasshopper staring at the poet’s thoughts is personification. The telephone having a mind of its own is again rhetorically a personification. Miracle on the 53rd street is magic realism. You mind your own business and I won’t pose you any questions are again poetry infused with personification. My non existing paint brushes are a metaphor suggestive of grass not growing in a high-rise building.

Psychoanalytically speaking there’s a hint of egotistic narcissism in the mind of the poet. The gaze of the poet is in Lacan’s language is a phallic gaze. The poet does not make music of poetry about the grasshopper but gazes at it from different masculine points of view. The grasshopper staring at him brings into juncture a masculine phallic gaze. This gaze is a gaze that is constructed cinematically too. Rather than being delighted the language of the poem revolves around the gaze. The relationship is impersonal, ‘you mind your business and I mind my own’.

From a Jungian point of view, the grasshopper becomes an archetype of a gnome or a troll. The grasshopper is psychologically portrayed in a language where the archetype defies rather than deifies the presence of the subject. The grasshopper becomes a psychic entity, an invading mental juggernaut who speaks to the poet in the language of a cosmic machine. In Jungian language, grasshopper is the presence of a dark archetype, a little devil incarnate that deliberately disturbs the privacy of the poet.

Existentially speaking there’s a hint of deliberate nihilism in the poem. The poet has negated the existence of the grasshopper in a cloud of language that shows that the grasshopper has deliberately invaded his privacy. The poet feels intimidated by the presence of being of the grasshopper. Being of the grasshopper is examined in the topology of language as the presence of existence of consciousness negating the being of the grasshopper in impersonal language. For example, ‘you mind your business and I will mind my own’. Consciousness becomes a literary instrument of ‘nothingness’, put in Sartre’s language. The surprise of finding the grasshopper does not become an adornment of delight but becomes a literary vehicle for the expression of angst. There’s an existential mysticism of language being put in the hyperbole of machinery. Is the poet a punk of being a mechanized saint? Caution, suspicion and the spirit of unwelcoming are other existential gestures conveyed through the language of the poet. The grasshopper is the poet’s existential other. The poet traps the grasshopper in the language of another who’s traumatized in the world of words.


Famous Poets Quotations – Top 30 Poetry Quotations by Famous Poets

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  1. “For this reason poetry is something more philosophical and more worthy of serious attention than history.”
    — Aristotle
  2. “Every American poet feels that the whole responsibility for contemporary poetry has fallen upon his shoulders, that he is a literary aristocracy of one.”
    — W. H. Auden
  3. “Eloquence is the poetry of prose.”
    — William C. Bryant
  4. “If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry.”
    — Emily Dickinson
  5. “How poetry comes to the poet is a mystery.”
    — Elizabeth Drew
  6. “She opened up a book of poems and handed it to me written by an Italian poet from the 13th century and every one of them words rang true and glowed like burning coal pouring off of every page like it was written in my soul from me to you.”
    — Bob Dylan
  7. “When a poet’s mind is perfectly equipped for its work, it is constantly amalgamating disparate experiences.”
    — T S Eliot
  8. “Painting was called silent poetry and poetry speaking painting.”
    — Ralph Waldo Emerson
  9. “Only poetry inspires poetry.”
    — Ralph Waldo Emerson
  10. “Poetry is a way of taking life by the throat.”
    — Robert Frost
  11. “The man is either mad, or he is making verses.”
    — Horace
  12. “Good religious poetry . . . is likely to be most justly appreciated and most discriminately relished by the undevout.”
    — A. E. Housman
  13. “I did not believe political directives could be successfully applied to creative writing . . . not to poetry or fiction, which to be valid had to express as truthfully as possible the individual emotions and reactions of the writer.”
    — Langston Hughes
  14. “I went for years not finishing anything. Because, of course, when you finish something you can be judged . . . I had poems which were re-written so many times I suspect it was just a way of avoiding sending them out.”
    — Erica Jong
  15. “As I am a poet I express what I believe, and I fight against whatever I oppose, in poetry.”
    — June Jordan
  16. “Poetry, even when apparently most fantastic, is always a revolt against artifice, a revolt, in a sense, against actuality.”
    — James Joyce
  17. “Poetry should surprise by a fine excess and not by singularity –it should strike the reader as a wording of his own highest thoughts, and appear almost a remembrance.”
    — John Keats
  18. “Conventional wisdom notwithstanding, there is no reason either in football or in poetry why the two should not meet in a man’s life if he has the weight and cares about the words.”
    — Archibald MacLeish
  19. “I see no reason for calling my work poetry except that there is no other category in which to put it.”
    — Marianne Moore
  20. “I’ve never read a political poem that’s accomplished anything. Poetry makes things happen, but rarely what the poet wants.”
    — Howard Nemerov
  21. “And he whose fustian’s so sublimely bad/ It is not poetry, but prose run mad.”
    — Alexander Pope
  22. “I have written some poetry that I don’t understand myself.”
    — Carl Sandburg
  23. “Poetry is the record of the best and happiest moments of the happiest and best minds.”
    — Percy Bysshe Shelley
  24. “Great poetry is always written by somebody straining to go beyond what he can do.”
    — Stephen Spender
  25. “I owe everything to a system that made me learn by heart till I wept. As a result I have thousands of lines of poetry by heart. I owe everything to this.”
    — George Steiner
  26. “Everything is complicated; if that we not so, life and poetry and everything else would be a bore.”
    — Wallace Stevens
  27. “Good poetry seems too simple and natural a thing that when we meet it we wonder that all men are not always poets. Poetry is nothing but healthy speech.”
    — Henry David Thoreau
  28. “How do poems grow? They grow out of your life.”
    — Robert Penn Warren
  29. “All good poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquillity.”
    — William Wordsworth
  30. “A poet’s autobiography is his poetry. Anything else can be only a footnote.”
    — Yevgeny Yevtushenko


Keats’ Conflict Between the World of Imagination and the World of Reality

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John Keats, an Escapist, tearing with the sufferings of life, escapes form the real world to the realm of the imagination. But there is a striking contrast between the world of reality, in which the poet lives really, and the world of the imagination where he wants to be. Now we will discuss the conflict between these two worlds as we found it in his poems, especially “Ode on a Grecian Urn”, “Ode to the Nightingale” and “Ode to melancholy.”

in the world real, happiness, beauty, love and youth is transient in imaginary world everything is beautiful and permanent. “Ode to the Nightingale” shows a conflict clear between happiness and immortality of the species and of the misery and the mortality of human life. The poem begins with a description of the effect of the song of a Nightingale in the body and the soul of the poet. As the poet says:

“my heart and a drowsy numbness pains.

my sense as though of hemlock had drunk “

the song of the Nightingale, the poet, is a symbol of eternal joy.” The world of the Nightingale is the ideal to him. Fatigue, fever and the fret of reality made him unhappy. Want to disappear to dissolve in the real world where as the poet says:

“… Youth grows pale and thin the spectrum and dies,

where but it’s to be full of sadness”

by which to be free from the belter and painful reality of life the poet wants to escape to the forest dream with Nightingale. As he says;

“away! Away! To fly to you “

in its forest of imagination, the poet is sensual enjoyment of his life that he wants to have in an ideal world.” This extremity of joy also reminds you of the death. As we see in the poem:

“now more then ever seems rich to die.” “

in such ecstasy.”

the poet now contrasts the mortality of the human being with the immortality of the Nightingale. The song of the Nightingale, the poet heard today was heard in the old time by emperors and clowns. Also heard in the land of the fairies where-

“… tables casements, opening of dangerous seas, land of fairy foam

is the magic.”

the same world ‘forlorn’ as a campaign brings back form world fency to the real world. It is the poet, like a dream. As he says;

“was a vision or a dream walking? “

run away is making music wake or sleep”.

by that in the poem are a dynamic contrast between an imaginary world and the real world full of pain.

as an in ‘ Ode to the Nightingale, in the poem “Ode on a Grecian Urn” Weir find a contrast between the permanence of purity, beauty and joy in the ballot box and the storms of the joy of the world read. As says the poet;

you were still made to bride of quietness! “

Te foster child of silence and cal slow”.

in the imaginative world of art the bride is Virgin for ever, but the world is real is impossible.

Keats also contrasts the permanence of art with the fleeting nature of real life. As the poet, says

“she cannot fade,… always with your love, and she be fair.”

in life real beauty and love are short in duration. Here the beloved ages with the passing of the years and loses its beauty. But the girl in the URN, which is a work of art, never aging and stay young forever.

“Ode to melancholy” is another poem with the odd dilemma of life. The poet says that the melancholy lives in beauty and happiness. We enjoy when they think that it will end soon. The duration of the beauty makes us unhappy.

melancholic, according to the poet-

«Mora with beauty that must die».

the poet, melancholy Mora with the goddess of pleasure in the same Temple. As says the poet;

“… in the same Temple of pleasure veiled melancholy…”

shows the relationship between pain and pleasure, joy and sadness of the transience and permanence.

we can finally say that the world of the imagination we can accommodate for a short time, but can not give us better reality solution. So everyone has to face the contrast between these worlds and finally return to the real world.


Appreciation of Poetry

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many students must write a literary essay based on the appreciation of poetry. To make the task more enjoyable, we need to define poetry. What is poetry? Edmund Clarence Stedman said the following: “poetry is language rhythmic, imaginative, expressing the invention, flavor, thinking, passion and knowledge of the human soul”.

the poetry is the creativity of the imagination of a person. Like any other literary work, it should be understood to be appreciated. The writer writes for a reason. Its purpose can be evoke emotion, inform, define, represent something of the world or life, entertain… In any case, a poem is unique to its writer. And each poem can be analyzed to be appreciated. Here are some ideas General to help you understand the poem are reading:

  1. subject: try to summarize the subject of the poem. You need to look at what is being described. It could be a place, an event, a person, a situation or an experience. What the poet want you to focus in the poem and each stanza?

  2. subject: once you have identified the subject of the poem, try and find out what the poet wants to tell you. Look at the following: message of the poet; its purpose; ideas that is transporting; the title; and the type of poem (IE, sonnet, ballad, lyrical, reflective monologue, Elegy and narrative, descriptive, a combination of different types). Always remember that feeling and work hand in hand with the subject and the subject of tone.
  3. structure: the form of the poem is very important. By now, you should know what type of poem is: for example, ballad, epic, Ode, sonnet, dramatic monologue, elegy, etc. Discuss your knowledge of the structure of the poem in the trial
  4. rhythm: look at the flow of the poem through line patterns. Are they regular or irregular? If they are regular, it remains the same through the poem metro? (M: pattern of rhythmic beats per line; stressed and unstressed words that make up the rhythm of the poem, stating, for example, slow or fast.) If there are changes to the subway, to analyze where the changes are. Try to find the reason for the change. What effect does this change in the poem?
  5. rhyme: the poem has a game plan? The poet has written in free verse, blank verse; do you use par rhyme, rhyme or broken rhyme? Use half rhyme, near rhyme, half rhyme rhyme or end? Would the poet underline words or the message using the rhyme scheme? What is the purpose and effect of rhyme scheme? Pause and punctuation have an effect on the structure, rhythm and rhyme in a poem.
  6. images: there are several ways to paint a picture in the mind of the reader through the use of words. See figurative devices and used in the poem sounds. They are visual imagery, auditory, kinesthetic, tactile, olfactory or gustatory?
  7. diction: the words used and the way in which they are placed can enhance the power of the creativity of the poet. Remember that investment, hyperbole, understatement, irony, sarcasm, rhetorical questions and other poetic techniques that can bring meaning to the poem. When you write your essay, you only need to speak of images, audio devices and figurative, as well as the diction; no need to explain why the poet has used the technique or if it is effective or not.
  8. general impression: give your opinion about the poem in general and what effect has had on you. Did you like it or not? Remember to use quotation marks when it is quoting the poem.

to read and appreciate more poetry, you will discover that education is complying with the study of poetry. Once you start to understand poems, be enriched in many ways. Poetry improves character. Keep trying it. Success lies above all in the love of literature, and then can be found in the understanding and interpretation of texts.


The Study of Poetry

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literary criticism is, like Matthew Arnold (1822-1888), the Victorian poet and critic points out, a “selfless to learn and propagate effort” the best that is known and thought in the world. And he strove hard to meet this goal in his critical writings. Giving primary importance to poetry in his essay “The study of poetry”, sees the poet as a seer. Without poetry, science is incomplete, and much of the religion and philosophy in the future would be replaced by poetry. Such, in their estimation, are the high destiny of poetry.

Arnold says that literature, and especially poetry, is “Criticism of life”. In poetry, this critique of life must comply with the laws of poetic truth and poetic beauty. Truth and the seriousness of the matter, happiness and perfection of diction and the form as outlined in the best poets, are what constitutes a critique of life.

poetry, says Arnold, interprets life in two ways: “poetry is interpretative for having natural magic in it and the moral depth”. And so the poet must aim high and excellent reliability in everything what is written. This demand has two essential qualities. The first is the choice of excellent performances. The poet must choose those that more powerfully the great primary human feelings that remain permanently in the race. The gist of the second is what Arnold calls the great style – the perfection of form, the choice of words, from his force directly pregnancy of matter that transports.

this, then, is conception of Arnold of the nature and mission of true poetry. And by its general principles – the “touchstone method” – introduced scientific objectivity to critical evaluation by providing comparison and analysis as the two main tools to judge individual poets. Thus, Shelley, Chaucer, Dryden and Pope fall short of the best, because they have “high seriousness”. Even Shakespeare thinks too much expression and very little of the conception. Ideal poets of Arnold are Homer and Sophocles in the ancient world, Dante and Milton and among modern, Goethe and Wordsworth. Arnold puts Wordsworth in the front row not by his poetry but for his “criticism of life”. It is curious that Byron is placed above Shelley. Inordinate love of Arnold of classicism made him blind to the beauty of poetry, and we cannot accept the vision of Arnold that the poetry of Shelley is less satisfactory than his writings in prose.

critique of Arnold’s life is often marred by his naive moralism, their inadequate perception of the relationship between art and morality and its uncritical admiration of what he regards as the sanity of gold of the ancient Greeks. For all his defense of disinterest, Arnold could not practice the disinterest in their essays. In his essay on Shelley in particular, displays a lamentable lack of disinterest. Shelley moral opinions were too much for the Victorian Arnold. In his essay on Keats also Arnold could not be disinterested. The sentimental letters of Keats to Fanny Brawne was too much for him. But the insistence of Arnold in the rules and their concern about the relationship between poetry and life made him one of the greatest modern critics.


My Opinions on Poetry (A Personal Review of Poetry)

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Introduction: what does the poesia-poesia do?

comment: perhaps my style



definition of poetry

definition of poetry II (effect)

substance of a poem

the world of art in words

excitation independent

in the form of poetry figurative language

what confessional poetry?

poetry reading understand poets introduction

which makes the poesia-poesia?

search in my mente-ojos, so you can make splendid poetry is: symbolism, irony, likeness, metaphor, arrangement of meter, expression, confession, spontaneity, but at the end of the poem – as at the end of a day – when the reader looks back and all is said and done, you have to ask, “has affected me?” if not – why? A poem should be some kind of chill, if not, some kind of voice to the reader. Again I say to myself, if not, go to the page of the book or the following poem, each poem might not be suitable for you, as all a singer sings the song is not necessarily the song which influences you.

poetry at its most raw and rare form and more perverse, is spontaneity.

maybe my style

comment on poetry

prefer to swell the ranks of the naturalness, spontaneity, free of couplets rhymed, romanticism and passion, leave the Elizabethans. I prefer to spend some of the 11th century, or just before that time, when rhyme was being modernized, but not the whole instead. There, there was a world of nature and mysteries and emotions to be written, said, and stories to be transmitted and stored: address times, cultures and heroes; and by what should I take that period, with my time and mix with fragments and dreams and all those things and that the dead bury to them dead. Allow reproduces artificial half the literature (it will make of all modes) and my class the other half. It can be difficult to live in a world where the critics who write mostly critical, discard, dignity, manners, this is perhaps a strong protest against all those things, but poets must reaffirm their right to represent the world, in a tone clear and genuine, is our duty. We are only passing through, leaving behind what we write (infecting minds, or produce health), always angry citizens will get its full of whatever, but those who do not wish to have his collected pockets, expects us to disseminate literature which is filled with thoughts of those things that I have already mentioned the swimming. And to these readers and the generations by come, write.

free verse: poetry today, often has no voice, theme, or even recognizable form. We call this verse free, that is the way dominant of the Postmodernity; prior to this, we have had of what was called modernism, where we have reviewed what poetry is.

definition of poetry I: every poem is a story, a short story, which involves the density of the language and the intensity of the projection of images, or images (mental images); and descriptive character, metaphors, similes (comparisons).

(definition of poetry II) effect as a poet, need to ask ‘ got the effect I wanted out of my poetry?’ maybe he did, and if so, you are on the right track. I mean never I ask someone this, I hear something to see what they say about my poetry, and then I can answer the question I.

substance of the poem

a poem must have substance to survive…! This substance is on the topic and the understanding of the poem.

– to write a poem, like everything in life, one must have a plan, the destination (where do you want take your reader?), again, this is part of the substance, which will be released later.

– a poem is perhaps the secret life of the poet; It may be his twin black, its independent self – this is often the case. Thus, the poet and the poem become more than one enigma of the despair that a work of art.

the world of art in words

the world of art in words, has a meaning defined for me; It is a romance, produced during the stages of creation. As a book. As I write it, refine it, test it, and then finally victory – a romance of opening and closing has taken place. Idleness never participates, is a horrible sin, an enemy of the soul. Man should not be idle, if so, the ghost does not leave him, not art.

the world of art in words

artist appeared on Earth

from the Sea-

the Sun passed over it,

came out just for a moment

a words.

#1718 05/03/2007

excitation independent

If you are looking for the poet within the poem, look the background that fits, the continuous feeling of touch, should be everywhere, but rarely has anyone looking for it, is called independent excitation; or art poetry. Yeats used it. If you missed the source of beauty and riming precisely in the poem, which sometimes is called ‘duty’, go back and look, if necessary. Not often used as it used to, and for various reasons, do not take pleasure in everyday life.


people form of poetry becomes obsessed with structure, trying to choose the correct shape you want to use in poetry (perhaps trying to learn their style or approach in the process). I prefer to let go and mix an idea or event in the following, to avoid losing the soul of it trying to fit into something that should never have been.

attempt to listen to my voice, speech within me, if I can find the silence, you will find the voice with no pretense and within that voice, are the syllables, letters, words, rhyming, and other elements of poetry may want to use.

would language figurative [](An Example) 19459005: language figurative, meaning of words used for refer is to something that really not wants to tell, is used here for make noises, as are metaphors sometimes

derived of echoes

I would like to show you love in a handful of clouds-

could I find them clouds and find the love

and is the love really is seeks?

Angels fallen from Heaven

love and chose Lust instead of the Earth…!

in the hell one loves the lust and therefore, would be

unhappy in the sky I guess…

Ah! Perhaps the allusions is the strand that are

looking for…? We are living for…

live in the era of the imagined howling

… with pains in the mind

fear of muerte-ninfas (well dressed)

teachers serving children a blotted

light; perfect pitch, more questions than

answer; disrupting the harmonic balance!…

(perhaps under all this is love).

#728 6/2005

what confessional poetry?

((Y por qué escribe?)) (01/03/2007))

what confessional poetry? It is when he set himself for the great fall, when get dare to all. Sylvia Plath, Anne Saxton, pervert Allen Ginsberg; Robert Lowell, I have several books, was a little quiet in his verses to the poets that I have just mentioned. Often used the ‘I’ or ‘You’ in the confessional poetry. Finding most of this poetry is unflattering, and this is why I don’t do much of it; It was not meant to be. It is usually personal and autobiographical. The poet is generally speaking to you directly, the reader.

when Leo to Plath, his confessional style seems more fantasy than fiction, but whatever it is, it is his soul speaking; forget the themes and the theme in confessional poetry, explores some details, processes beyond emotions, events, the author really explore and process your life ahead of you.

has been raised the question, “why write you?” and a trade fair must be the answer perhaps more than one psychologist, a poet, for sometimes one needs to be brutally honest. It seems to me that you clear the brain and make a guilt more opaque. Often times more you write something, the less powerful is. A way of processing the pain.

poetry reading

in reading poetry, first read little by little, give your attention, as it does when you eat dinner, then slowly read it a second time, with a mind open, third, read it again, this time, as it would be to read prose, now jump to you.

many poems are complex and perhaps ambiguous, if they are too much for you, trash them (unless you want to suffer through them, then are pidiendor for pain and you can get it).

know the poet who is reading, its history will help you understand why is writing like him, his mind will perhaps come more clear to yours.

to get rid of your preconceived ideas (bias and so on) read-enjoy the experience. If you like poetry and not the poet, because of your prejudice, you have a problem.

understanding of the poets

– to understand any poetry or poets, one must have experienced what the poet ha-identicas experiences; or should be formed as poet-, the exceptions are of the old school of poetry and one shoe fits all (endeavors, understand the theme, plot, and vision of poetry becomes much easier); of the contemporary scene, you must have the same size of the shoe of the poet to understand where the poet you are guiding, and in poetry poet must have a destination to the reader – so you don’t (and should be).

– the poet perhaps survives because he or she is unconscious (or not connected) to the world and all its compulsions (suicide is often on the other side of this coin, if not drugs and alcohol).

-poetry has accomplished something if it makes to one reflect about it…; stretching this a bit more, (it appears) comes a day (not so far in the future), when poets do not even need to know anything about literature (but not today); However, poetry is (or should be) considered to be the highest form of literature.

-the most poets write about love and death-that perhaps are the two main ingredients (or themes) to the poetry; some write about those problems social, that makes poetry bad; but it is “Beauty” that shines above all, and which is often, too often looked rather than personal interest, or a combination of the confused delirious negative thoughts put in writing by a poet under the influence of some kind of chemical. You can get a high beauty that surrounds them.

latest words: as poets not must forget, that influence in them people, young in particular and duty an obligation (not duty), a good example by our form of live and write.