Crafting Part 1

“Poetry may make us from time to time a little more aware of the deeper, unnamed feelings which form the substratum of our being, to which we rarely penetrate; for our lives are mostly a constant evasion of ourselves.” ~T.S. Elliot


Poetry isn’t like other kinds of writing. Poetry weaves facts together with feeling. It’s purpose is to make things come alive and make us notice again.

PART  1. What makes a piece of writing a poem?

    1. Read a poem other students have chosen because it speaks to them about who they are.
      1. Visualize the words as you read.
      2. Discuss what makes it a poem.
      3. What is the value of poetry?
        1. Connects the inner and outer worlds.
        2. Gives space and place to the imagination. Exploration and freedom–many directions possible
        3. Words help us find and express who we are. We are able to see what we have words for.  With words we create worlds.
    2. Look at 2-3 brief pieces of writing. Which is more poetic?
    3. Poetry across the curriculum.
    4.  Poems to read aloud
    5. Definitions of poetry: select one

II. Thinking like a writer: translating into words the sensory reality of experience. To do this you need to look closely.

The importance of word choice: Envisioning where you are through translating it into words. Connotations: what the words suggest. 

The two levels of poetry: physical level and the feeling level. We read poetry through these lenses:

  1. Physical level is developed through selecting details.
  2. Feeling level is used through pace, line, rhythm, poetic devices and figures of speech. Mood and tone is created through word choice.
    1. List things you notice about what a poem is doing: list on own, share with partner, review together.
      1. “Milk Bunnies”
      2. “Visit to the Tuna Cannery”

Importance of imagery.

Create a group poem using images related to a particular word or sense. Possible topics: amazement, placeweather, landscape:

Group poem reflection sheet.


On your ownObservation–what you notice–something small no one else will notice. Find faces in nature or physical surroundings.