Poems_essay_instruction.docx - Topic: After reading and...

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Topic: After reading and studying all six of the poems from the PDF anthologyInfiniteRoseslisted below, choose set 1 (poems 1 and 4) or set 2 (poems 2 and 3) or set 3 (poems 4 and5) or set 4 (poems 5 and 6) as the target of your analysis (though in your introduction and/orconclusion, as well as end notes, you might have occasion to mention one or both of the otherfour poems, if structures, dynamics, images, or associations offer comparative or contrastivevalue):1) Derek Walcott. “The Light of the World,”2) Li-Young Lee. “Persimmons,”3) Debra Allbery. “Chronic Town,”4) Ruth Padel. “The Two-Handled Jug.”5) Michael Goldman. "Report on Human Beings,"6) Michael Ondaatje. "Sweet Like a Crow."Your task is to analyze or ‘unfold’ the inner workings and meaning-making effects of those twopoems in a specific way. It is a fine and classic idea, as you work on a given poem, to understandsomething of the poet’s philosophy and life course. So, researching the poet her or himself isimportant. Such information could serve as interesting framing commentary in your introductionor in a series of harmonized end-notes. But, having said that, you should understand that thisisn’t a biography assignment: your primary task is to write an essay of considered analysisfocused on two rich and worthy poems, revealed through the four-layer analytical plan outlinedbelow.Poet and literary scholar, Jane Hirshfield has given us a supple theory of how poemsfunction. She argues, inNine Gates: Entering the Mind of Poetry, that poems are born from akind of origami ofconcentrations, an artful blending and crafted weaving of different ways ofsensing and seeing and signing the world. She tells us,
The forms concentration can take when placed into the words of poems are probably infinite.Still, six emerge as central energies through which poetry moves forward into the world itcreates---the concentrations of music, rhetoric, image, emotion, story, and voice. Not all work atthe same level, and in any particular poem each will always coexist with at least some of theothers; yet each can at times stand at the core of a poem’s speaking. (Hirshfield 7)Each of these ‘concentrations’ can function as a critical filter with which we can discover andweigh the ideas and images, the perceptions and experiences, the insights and remembranceswhich the poem gathers and displays. Each of these ‘concentrations’ is a window onto oneparticular layer of meaning-making which a poet has labored to create through the gift of words

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Term
Summer
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Tags
Jane Hirshfield, Persimmons,

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