Uploaded by Yiskah Zoll

Writing Poetry Analysis

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Englisch 10c
Teen World
You walked gently towards me
Ben Okri
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You walked gently towards me
In the evening light
And brought silence with you
Which fell off when
I touched your shoulder
And felt the rain on it.
We went through the city
Up the roaring streets
Full of many lights
And we sought1 a place
To be alone
And found none.
The evening was merciful
On your smile.
Your laughter touched
The hungry ghosts
Of passing years.
You moved smoothly
On the waters
Your shadow sounded of silk
You led me to places
Full of mellow2 darkness
Secret coves3 where they
Didn't let us in
And under the rain
You bid me4 kiss you with
Your silent and uncertain eyes.
We walked home
And the rain laughed around us
With its insistent5 benediction6
And you hair was strung with
Diadems7
Your face with glittering dreams
And my eyes were wet
With your luminous8 spirited joy.
1. What is happening in the poem? Sum up the content of the poem in your own words.
2. What is the poem about? Describe the theme(s) of the poem briefly.
3. Name and quote (with line numbers!) at least five figures of speech from the poem and
interpret them.
4. Do you personally think the poem effectively conveys its theme? Why? Why not?
5. Analyse the poem.
1
sought, v.: past participle of to seek.
mellow, adj.: calm, gentle, pleasant.
3 coves, n.: a small bay.
4 to bid sbd., v.: to ask someone to do something.
5
to be insistent, adj.: demanding something firmly.
6 benedictions, n: blessings.
7 diadem, n.: a crown,
8 luminous, adj.: shining in the dark.
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Englisch 10c
Teen World
Analysing Poetry
A poetry analysis evaluates a poem. It analyzes the words, sounds, feelings and topics that the
poet uses in the poem. It should include analysis of the theme, the structure and the word choice
(e.g. figures of speech). It should have both an introduction and a conclusion.
1
Read the poem twice, at least. Try to analyse your first impression of it and
write down a few comments. Read the poem again, this time more slowly. Try
to pay attention to the particular word selection, organization of the poem,
figures of speech used etc.
2
Introduction
Start your analysis with an introductory paragraph. It should include the title of
the poem, its author and a brief summary of the poem’s content and the
theme(s) of the poem.
3
Formal Analysis
Now move on to the technical side of your analysis. Name the amount of lines
and stanzas the poem has. Then, determine the poem’s rhyme and metre. Do
rhyme and metre add anything to the sound or mood of the poem? Carry on
your analysis by naming figures of speech and giving specific examples of
metaphors, personifications, similes, and other literary devices.
4
Analysis of Content
This should be the focus of your interpretation. Here you should answer the
questions:
- What are the themes of the poem? How are they conveyed?
- How does the poem develop? Are there any changes in the mood?
- How does the poet manage to create images through language?
- What emotional response does the poem evoke?
5
Conclusion
Write a conclusion that sums up your main points. It should be no longer than
two or three sentences. Decide whether or not the poem conveys its themes
effectively. Give your own opinion!