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How to Write a Good Poem Analysis

When you study language and literature, you will have to write a poem analysis frequently. Teachers believe that students will train their memory, critical thinking skills and creativity when they read and analyze poems at least once a week. Doubtless, poetry is the best way to write about complex issues in the most concise way. Every poem has a lot of hidden ideas and symbols, which require professional and scrupulous analysis. Obviously, students have problems with this assignment, because it requires the original approach. You can improve your knowledge about poem analysis writing if you look through these simple guidelines.

Step One: Write about Context of the Poem

When you need to prepare a poem analysis, you should start with the presentation of the general information about it. It is important to learn about the background information of your poem if you want to understand its meaning and hidden ideas. To begin with, pay attention to the author. Think whether he had any specific political, religious or social position and point of view. Could he introduce his own problems in his poem? Was he fond of travelling? Did he participate in military conflicts? Was he rich or poor? Secondly, pay attention to the time and place of publication. Think about the historical events, which occurred at that time. Then, write whether the poem belongs to any literary movement. Mention that the poem is the part of the definite series of works of this author. Define the general tone and theme of this collection of poems.

Step Two: Define Style of the Poem and Analyze Its Title

When you read the poem for the first time, you can define its style easily. It can be an epic, a lyric, a confessional poem, etc. Then, pay attention to its title. Say whether it has deep meaning or antithesis or whether there are many options of its explanation.

Step Three: Pay Attention to Repetitions and Opening and Closing Lines

When you read the poem and see that some words and phrases repeat several times, you should think about the reason of this decision. It is possible to say that these repetitions are the most informative and important parts of the entire poem. You ought to analyze them attentively. Opening and closing lines are important, because they play the role of an introduction and conclusion.

Step Four: Analyze Speaker of the Poem

It is important to learn about the speaker of the poem. He can narrate in the first person or sound like a universal voice. Try to guess whether the speaker is male or female and whether it is possible to identify him with the author of the poem. On the other hand, you ought to be careful and avoid this identification, because the speaker is not the same as the author.

Step Five: Define Mood, Rhythm and Tone of the Poem

Write whether the mood of the poem is jolly, mysterious, gloomy, depressive, etc. The mood is closely connected with the main theme. If the author writes about tragic and fearful events, he will hardly choose cheerful mood. It is quite difficult to identify the tone of writing. One can easily recognize irony and satire but he will have problems with the differentiation of somber and serious tones. Finally, you should pay attention to the rhythm of the poem. Some poems can possess long lines and you will not read them rhythmically. Other poems sound like a marsh. Moreover, every poem has its own speed. In some places, you can read faster, while in other places the speed of reading decreases.

Step Six: Analyze Language of the Poem and Its Symbols

You ought to analyze the language of your poem in order to find the hidden symbols and context there. Pay attention to the peculiar sounds, onomatopoeia, alliteration, euphony, cacophony, etc., which improve the quality of the poem. Finally, you ought to find any symbols, which can help you understand the content better. Most often, you should possess background knowledge about the definite culture if you want to decipher the symbols presented in the text. When you analyze the entire poem, paraphrase it into the simplest words in order to demonstrate that you have understood its idea and composition.