(choose 3 poems, write 4 or more sentences about each .. 12 or more total sentences) 3.3 Discuss – Poems and Titles
The purpose of this activity is to read and interact with the content of a group of unique poems by different poets. As readers we often overlook a poem’s title as we rush to read the content. In this forum you will have an opportunity to consider the titles of several of these poems and explain in a post what you consider to be the connection between the title and content of three of them. This activity will be useful later in the Poetry Unit.
1. Read and enjoy all of these poems:
- “Acquainted with the Night” (Links to an external site.) by Robert Frost
- “Black Boys Play the Classics (Links to an external site.)” by Toi Derricotte
- “somewhere I have travelled, gladly beyond (Links to an external site.)” by E.E. Cummings
- “Wild Nights—Wild Nights (Links to an external site.)!” by Emily Dickinson
- “My Son the Man (Links to an external site.)” by Sharon Olds
- “My Husband’s Back (Links to an external site.)” by Susan Minot
- “Legal Alien (Links to an external site.)” by Pat Mora
- “On Death, without Exaggeration (Links to an external site.)” by Wislawa Szymborska
- “On the Pulse of Morning (Links to an external site.)” by Maya Angelou
- “Let America Be America Again (Links to an external site.)” by Langston Hughes
- “All Along the Watchtower (Links to an external site.)” by Bob Dylan
- “Litany (Links to an external site.)” by Billy Collins
2. Consider the connection between the titles of the poems and their content.
3. Write and Post a Reply of at least four sentences each, for at least THREE of these poems that reveal your thoughts on how the title connects to the content (You will have at least 12 sentences — four for each poem):
- Use details from the poemthat show you have read it.
- Do not summarize the poem. You need to make a connection(s) between title and content.
- You are welcome, even encouraged, to explore each poem’s background and meaning through research. Some of the poems are explicated (analyzed and developed in detail) on sites such as shmoop.com. Be sure to cite (in text citation and Works Cited entry) any outside sources used in this activity.
3.8 Write a poem, no specific length – Be a Poet!
The purpose of this activity is to apply the information learned in this unit to writing a poem and being a poet.
- Choose a topic that is important to you, and write a poem about it. Here are some possible ideas, but the topic is open:
- A trip—short, long, real, or imaginary
- An object with special meaning
- A person loved or lost
- A pet
- A dream that meant something significant to you
- A special place
- A funny experience that shines light on life
- A photograph—old, new, or significant for some reason
- A song that a poem incorporates in a meaningful way
- Consider the following as you craft your poem: think of your reader (thank you, Billy Collins: “Introduction to Poetry.” YouTube, www.youtube.com/watch?v=TkREA94QYRk (Links to an external site.) “Key West Literary Seminar.” , www.poetryfoundation.org/podcasts/75825/billy-collins (Links to an external site.) , www.poets.org/poetsorg/text/how-read-poem-0 (Links to an external site.)), and also some of the tools that make us experience a poem on various levels (thank you, New Critics….New Critical Approach). Show off what you have learned about poetic elements.
- Embed a “big idea” or theme in your poem. In other words, it should have a point to make that is supported by the tools of poetry.
- Post your poem as a “reply” to the discussion.