102 Answered Questions for the topic Poetry

What does "And others, whose breasts love the feel of scapulars," mean in Baudelaire's "Damned Women"?

> Et d'autres, dont la gorge aime les scapulaires,> > Qui, recélant un fouet sous leurs longs vêtements,> > Mêlent, dans le bois sombre et les nuits solitaires,> > L'écume du... more

Did Poe plagiarise someone else's work when writing "The Raven"?

I've read that Poe's been accused of lifting significant elements from many authors including Elizabeth Barrett, Charles Dickens, Leo Penzoni, and Thomas Holley Chivers (and "unknown," of course).... more


When and why did the practice of reading "Address to a Haggis" at Burns Night dinner originate?

Many people and institutions around the world hold [Burns suppers](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burns_supper) on or close to Burns Night, 25 January. Part of these events is the traditional... more


Why was Welsh nationalist poet RS Thomas so critical of the Welsh people?

Welsh poet R.S. Thomas was an ardent Welsh nationalist and advocate for independence. Although a native English speaker he learned and conversed in Welsh, although he never felt fluent enough to... more

How is 'flash fiction' a distinctive genre?

***Flash Fiction*** is an umbrella term used to describe any fictional work of extreme brevity, including the *Six-Word Story*, *140-character stories* (also known as 'twitterature'), *the dribble*... more


Why is this poem by Paul Auster entitled "Spokes"?

The poem "Spokes" by Paul Auster (of which you can read the first few verses [here](https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/browse?contentId=32184), or the whole poem... more

What is the metrical style of Hungarian poetry?

While [reading about](https://www.jstor.org/stable/40142205?seq=2#metadata_info_tab_contents) Hungarian poetry, I [came... more
Poetry Literature Meter


Significance of rising/falling meter?

If I am analyzing a poem and I realize that it has rising meter, what does that say about the poem. Like do happy tone poems have rising meters whereas sad poems have falling meter?


Do the poisons in "Ode on Melancholy" have deeper meaning?

In "Ode on Melancholy", Keats uses the images of three poisons in the first stanza: Wolf's bane, nightshade, and yew-berries. Are these poisons simply meant to connote death/suicide, or might they... more


What do the "mirror" and the "lake" represent in "Mirror" by Sylvia Plath?

In ["Mirror" by Sylvia Plath](https://allpoetry.com/poem/8498499-Mirror-by-Sylvia-Plath), the speaker in the poem says,> Now I am a lake.But, also at times implies that the speaker is a mirror.... more

What's the point of the sandy beach in "A Dream Within a Dream"?

The main thrust of Edgar Allan Poe's poem ["A Dream Within a Dream"](https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/52829/a-dream-within-a-dream) concerns the existential angst of the narrator, and his... more

Who is the author of this contradictory poem starting "The night was dark and stormy"?

Does anyone know the name of or the author of the poem below? My grandfather used to say it all of the time and I would like to read it at his funeral. It's very silly and goes something like... more


Did Rudyard Kipling Write "The Wrath of the Awakened Saxon"?

I came across a poem on a forum, attributed to Rudyard Kipling called "THE WRATH OF THE AWAKENED SAXON" (the title seems to be often posted in caps). A Google search indicates that where posted,... more


How should I understand these lines from As You Like It?

I am currently on my second reading of *As You Like It*. I am having a really hard time comprehending lines 22-25 in Act 1, scene 2. Here are those lines as they appear in the version I am reading... more


I need to figure out a wolf metaphor for a poem.

I need to figure out a new metaphor to use. It has to describe how the wolf is a hassle to human society. My original was,” While I’m an ant- a pest to your society” I got advice told to me that... more

What is the deeper meaning of Blake's "The Lily"?

The poem "The Lily" by William Blake must be one of the shortest of his [*Songs of Innocence and of Experience* collection](http://www.gutenberg.org/files/1934/1934-h/1934-h.htm), only four lines... more

In Baudelaire's "Chant d'automne", why isn't the hidden rhythm better known?

I noticed something remarkable about one of Baudelaire's poems that I can't find any mention of on the web. My question is whether anybody has noticed this before, and whether there's some reason... more


Meaning of this line in "On seeing the Elgin Marbles"?

>And each imagined pinnacle and steep >Of godlike hardship tells me I must die The "pinnacle and steep" represent the pillars of the Parthenon if I'm not mistaken. But the next line... more

What does 'Gilead' mean in The Raven?

Poe's poem *The Raven* contains the following words in the fifteenth stanza: > [...] tell me truly, I implore— Is there—is there balm in Gilead?—tell me—tell me, I implore!" **What does... more

What does "the sad height" represent in "Do not go gentle into that good night" by Dylan Thomas?

In the final stanza of Dylan Thomas's *Do not go gentle into that good night*, he says, > And you, my father, there on the sad height, Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray. ... more

What does "kettle at the heel" mean in this Yeats poem, "The Tower"?

> What shall I do with this absurdity — O heart, O troubled heart — this caricature, Decrepit age that has been tied to me As to a dog's tail? > Never had I more Excited, passionate,... more
Poetry Literature Meter


Is there a name for version of trochaic tetrameter with lines of 8|7|8|7 syllables?

Is there a name for the meter used in Clementine: Drove she ducklings to the water Every morning just at nine Struck her foot against a splinter Fell into the foaming brine or in... more


Why is "waistcoat" modified by "leering" in the poem “A German Requiem"?

In the fifth line from the third stanza of "A German Requiem", the word *waistcoat* is modified by *leering*. I can understand *waistcoat* is personified as a person here. Is this person the... more


Whose were the "best minds" being destroyed in Ginsberg's "Howl"?

In Allen Ginsberg´s most famous poem "Howl", he claims he was witness to the destruction of the best minds of his generation: > I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness,... more

What is "This is Just to Say" about?

In ["This is Just to Say"](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/This_Is_Just_To_Say) by William Carlos Williams, the speaker appears to deliver an apology for stealing the plums of the person at whom the... more

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