Task 2: Looking at Poetry from Three Sides

Student Goal:

You will examine in detail your chosen poem.

You must think about the following key questions for your poem:

  • Why is this poem your poet’s most transformative work?
  • What personal experiences helped your poet write this poem?
  • How do they use poetic devices to help transform the readers perspective?
  • How has this poem transformed people, society, or the world?

You must look at the content of the piece, what big ideas it introduces, how it is connected to your poet’s life, and how other readers could connect to it. This poem must be examined in detail and should represent your poet’s most transformative work. It may, in your opinion, be the piece that shows this poet’s main approach for personal, societal or cultural change.

Your report should include the following:

  1. The full poem should be printed on one page only; the title and poet’s name should be at the top of the page.  Include your handwritten markings of your thoughts and ideas about the poem as you read and analyzed it.
  2. A detailed look at the poem using the 3 levels of examination (expository essay).

3 levels (or sides) of Poetic Examination: Understand, Analyze, and Evaluate

You will examine your poem in detail using the understand-analyze-evaluate approach.


Using Background Knowledge and Asking Questions:

  • What does the poem say or do?
  • What are the structures (poetic devices) used in the poem?
  • What is the poem’s topic?



Connect: Give some background information on the details of this issue.

Ask: What is the issue or theme of the poem?

Ask and Infer: Examine the verses and analyze their meaning; use specific lines to show your understanding. Are the poet’s ideas clear? How did the poem make you feel?  

Infer/Predict: Define the issue that your poet wants to change. List and explain the causes of this issue.

Determine Importance: Give specific reference within poem to show poets ideas and intentions and how they used poetic devices to accomplish this.

Synthesize: Explain the ideas and solutions offered by poet.


Connect: Put the poem into context by looking at the poet’s audience. Who is the poet’s audience?  Why do you think this?

Infer: Why did the poet choose specific words or lines; evaluate how effective these lines are in encouraging change. Is the poet successful or not?  Why?

Determine Importance /Synthesize: Examine individual lines to explain your opinion on the poem.  Do you empathize with the poet’s message?

Synthesize: Bring your idea together on this poem. Why did you want to study your particular poet and poem?


Writing Style, Process, and Formatting:

It is always important to remember that all of your ideas about the poem should be referenced to words and lines within the poem; therefore, if you make an inference about the poet’s idea, you must back up your idea with the particular part of the poem that reveals this idea.

Other details:

  • This task should be between 500-1,000 words, not including the poem.
  • No bibliography required.
  • This is a paper copy (hard copy)
  • You should follow the writing process.
  • The format: MLA See this video for help.

Due Date: Friday, November 28, at 3pm

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