Short Response Paper

THE SUN RISING BY JOHN DONNE is the poem I want this paper to be about
Most of the assignments I will give you this semester will ask you to analyze the style, personality, or meaning of a poem or poems, and usually I will ask you to do that with a fairly neutral, analytical tone.

This assignment is a bit different. For this assignment, I would like you for to select a poem we have read since September 29 (which is to say, anything from our reading in Donne, Marvell, Wordsworth, Keats, Shelley, Tennyson, Whitman, or Dickinson). I would then like for you to select two to four consecutive lines that you think sound good, and write a short paper which uses the terminology of poetic analysis to help you to explain why you think those lines are good.

There are obviously a lot of ways to go with this. For one thing, there are lots of ways one might think that lines sound good: perhaps you find them moving, or funny, or inspirational, or sad, or erotic, or true, or playful, or beautiful. But then, more significantly, you could discuss a very wide array of stylistic techniques: alliteration, assonance, consonance, rhyme, rhythm, meter, anaphora, enjambment, end-stopping, internal pauses, modulations of voice…I could keep going, but you get the idea.

Bottom line: pick two to four lines from a poem weve read in the last few weeks that you think sound good, and write a short paper using the tools and terminology of formal poetic analysis to explain why you think they sound good.

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