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Grade 11 Poetry and Short Story Terms Definitely test/quiz material – please take notes! Alliteration The repetition of consonant sounds at the begninning of words (two or more words that are close to each other). Example: life’s fitful fever Example: the kite crashed into the car Allusion An indirect reference to something. Example: She had found her Romeo. Example: He was hit by Cupid’s arrow. Anachronism An event, object or person that is out of place. Example: Cars in a story about ancient Rome (cars did not exist yet) Example: Abraham Lincoln carrying around a stereo Apostrophe Directly addressing (speaking to) someone who is not actually there, or to a personified thing. Example: Twinkle twinkle little star / how I wonder what you are. Example: Then come, sweet death, and rid me of this grief. Example: God, deliver me from fools. Assonance The repetition of vowel sounds in words that are near each other. Example: Rage rage against the dying of the light Example: Hear the mellow wedding bells Ballad Narrative poem (tells a story) Usually song-like Usually short stanzas with rhyme scheme (quatrains) Blank Verse Poetry with meter but no rhyme. Usually this is seen as iambic pentametre (a line with ten syllables in pairs of five – this is common in Shakespearean verse). Example: Shall I compare the to a summer’s day? Thou art so lovely and so temperate. Conflict The opposition of characters or forces that make up the problems in a story and keep the plot moving forward. Conflict may be internal or external Internal: Man* vs. Self External: Man vs. Man; Man vs. Nature; Man vs. Society *“Man” being used universally, refers to women as well. Connotation Things that come to mind, or are commonly associated with, a particular idea or word. Example: The word “home” often implies safety, warmth, family, etc. Consonance The repetition of nearby consonant sounds in the middle or ends of words. Example: The cat sat in the cart. Example: A peach was resting on the bird’s perch. Couplet Two lines of poetry that rhyme, and typically share the same meter. Example: I think that I shall never see A poem as lovely as a tree. Denotation The literal, dictionary definition of a word. We learned that “home” has the connotation of warmth, safety, and family; however, home also has the denotation of the place where one lives (this is the dictionary definition of “home”). Diction Word choice Whereas a personal essay may have a colloquial, or conversational, type of diction, a literary essay for a college application would likely have much more formal diction. Didactic Writing that is intended to teach a lesson or have a moral. Example: The story of the hare and the tortoise is meant to teach kids that “slow and steady wins the race”. Dramatic Monologue A speech where a singular (hence monologue) character reveals a dramatic situation to a silent listener. Example: Act I scene V of Macbeth when Lady Macbeth reveals her intent to have Duncan killed in order to make Macbeth king. Elegy A poem of reflection, typically about the dead. Epic 0 A long narrative poem that deals with heroic characters. Epitaph 0 An inscription on a tombstone Eulogy A speech that praises someone, and is usually written for someone who has just died. A kind of speech that you would expect to be read at a funeral. Euphemism Using a less offensive term in place of a more offensive or graphic term. Example: Saying that your grandfather “passed away” instead of saying that he died. Example: Calling someone “elderly” instead of “old”. Example: Saying that someone was “let go” instead of “fired”. Fable A brief narrative, often with animal characters, illustrating a moral truth (didactic!). Example: The Hare and the Tortoise Example: The Lion and the Mouse Flashback When the narrator jumps from the present to recall a story from the past (i.e. a jump back in time). Foreshadowing 0 A hint or indication of something that is going to happen 0 Example: the witches predictions in Macbeth Free Verse Poetry that does not rhyme or have regular meter. Example: Fog BY CARL SANDBURG THE fog comes on little cat feet. It sits looking over harbor and city on silent haunches and then moves on. Hyperbole (Hi-per-bully) An extreme exaggeration meant for emphasis or humour. Example: I’ve done this a million times. Example: He was hungry enough to eat a horse. Example: I feel like I could move mountains. Imagery Descriptive language that plays on the five senses: sight, touch, taste, smell, and sound Example from Edwin John Pratt’s “The Shark”: He seemed to know the harbour, So leisurely he swam; His fin, Like a piece of sheet-iron, Three-cornered, And with knife-edge, Stirred not a bubble As it moved With its base-line on the water. His body was tubular And tapered And smoke-blue, And as he passed the wharf He turned, And snapped at a flat-fish That was dead and floating. And I saw the flash of a white throat, And a double row of white teeth, And eyes of metallic grey, Hard and narrow and slit. Then out of the harbour, With that three-cornered fin Shearing without a bubble the water Lithely, Leisurely, He swam— That strange fish, Tubular, tapered, smoke-blue, Part vulture, part wolf, Part neither—for his blood was cold. Irony When something is said or done that is the opposite of what is meant or expected. There are three types: dramatic, situational, and verbal. Dramatic: Something happens that the audience/reader is aware of that a character is unaware of. Situational: An event occurs that is the opposite of what one would expect. Verbal: Something is said that is the opposite of what one means. Lyric A poem that expresses emotions of the speaker. Metaphor A direct comparison without using “like” or “as” Her hair is silk. Meter The pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables in poetry lines. Narrative Writing that tells a story, featuring elements of plot and character. Ode A long and elaborate poem written to praise someone or something. Onomatopoeia Words that imitate the sounds that they represent. Example: The bacon sizzled. Example: The wind whooshed by. Example: The tree branched made a cracking sound. Example: The crackle of the fire was mesmerizing. Oxymoron Two contradictory, or opposite, words are combined in one expression or phrase Examples: jumbo shrimp; wise fool; same difference; Great Depression; pretty ugly. Paradox A statement that seems illogical, but also reveals some truth. Example: Parental punishment is a form of love. Example from Macbeth: “Fair is foul and foul is fair” Pastoral Poetry that is related to life in the country, meadows, forests, etc. Pathetic Fallacy When nature/setting reflects the mood or events in a poem/story. Example: a thunderstorm during an argument Example: a sunset during a romantic scene Example: fireworks during a first kiss Personification Giving human qualities to inanimate objects or abstract ideas. You could think of it as giving human qualities to things that wouldn’t ordinarily have human qualities. Example: The wind whistled. Example: The branches reached their arms to the sky. Example: The stars danced playfully. Plot The actions and events in the story. Climax Rising Action Introduction Falling Action Conclusion Point of View The perspective from which a story is told Four types: First person – uses “I” Third person objective – “he” or “she”; like a video camera Third person omniscient – “he” or “she” and we know what the characters are thinking/feeling Third person limited omniscient – “he” or “she” and we know what one of the characters is thinking/feeling Pun Word play involving either a word with two different meanings or homonyms (same spelling, different meanings). Example: My orthopedic surgeon is quite hip. Example: If you throw a cat out a car window, does it become kitty litter? Quatrain A rhyming stanza with four lines. The most common rhyme schemes are AAAA, AABB, and ABAB. Example: O, my luve’s like a red, red rose, That’s newly sprung in June: O, my luve’s like the melodie That’s sweetly played in tune. Rhetoric The art of persuasion in speaking or writing Satire The use of humor, and often sarcasm, to make social commentary, or highlight certain problems. Example: The Colbert Report Simile A comparison using “like” or “as”. Example: Her hair was as soft as silk. Example: The rain was like a warm shower. Sonnet A 14-line poem with a specific rhyme scheme. The most common type of sonnet is the Shakespearean sonnet with the following rhyme scheme: ABAB CDCD EFEF GG. Suspense A technique a writer uses to create tension or anticipation in a story. Symbolism 0 A device where one thing stands for, or represents, something else. 0 Example: In “The Possibility of Evil”, the roses represented evil hidden within something beautiful or pleasant. Synecdoche Most commonly, when part of an object is referred to in place of the whole object, as intended. Example: I’ve got wheels (meaning a whole car) Example: All hands on deck (not just hands) Example: We have mouths to feed (people) Theme The writer’s purpose or message, usually a comment on some aspect of human nature or human life. Example: In “The Possibility of Evil”, one of the themes is that evil could be present anywhere.