comma, as here, can be enough to tell you that there is a break in the rhythm. Tools Allusion –a reference to something outside of the poem, such as people, places, events, or things in the present, the past, popular culture, or tradition. Poets make allusions to create metaphors, to bring new shades of meaning into a poem (think of the way Sylvia Plath uses references to Nazi history in "Daddy"), and to strike a connection with the reader through shared knowledge. Ambiguity –refers to the potential of possessing more than one meaning. Yes, this word also means "obscurity" or "uncertainty." But poets deliberately cultivate the first kind of ambiguity, with marvelous effects. Often they prefer that a poem's meaning remain unsettled –they want it to bristle with possibilities. Learn to play with ambiguity. Ambivalence –a state of feeling that includes more than one emotion. Ambivalence is often aroused by ambiguity. Ambivalence is our natural state; we feel happiness mixed with boredom, pleasure mixed with anxiety, resentment mixed with admiration. In other words, we rarely experience our emotions unalloyed. Good poetry (like life) calls forth many combinations of feelings. Why demand an absolutely clear understanding, when it is so much richer to consider all the different things a poem might mean? You actually can destroy a good poem by demanding from it one single, certain meaning or emotion –so cultivate your capacity for ambivalence. It will help you as a reader and as a person -- which is the whole point, isn't it? Diction –a term generally used to mean "choice of words." The word diction also is used to mean groups of words with the same social register, as in low diction or high diction. Denotation –refers to the dictionary meaning of a word. Connotation –refers to the associations –historical, cultural, literary, political, etc. -- built up around a word. Syntax –a term that refers to the order of words. Inversion –refers to the practice, seen most often in poetry of older periods, of twisting words out of their natural order or syntax. Enjambment –refers to the running of a sentence from one line into the next without punctuation. Figure of Speech –a word or group of words that are not to be taken literally but nevertheless express something recognizable –a very general classification that includes metaphors, allusions, similes, and so forth. Apostrophe –direct address to something or someone you wouldn't normally address, as in Shelly's "O World, O Life, O Time" or Ginsberg's "America." Image –This word can mean: a vivid picture, a vivid appeal to any of the senses (not just vision), an instantaneous complex of emotions, often linked to a vivid picture or sense appeal, any figure of speech, including metaphors, personifications, similes, or allusions.