English 2 Paper 2
Have you ever wondered what poetry is? Is “One fish, Two fish, Red fish, Blue fish” actually poetic and if so, why? Maybe because it rhymes, but then why do people consider Shakespeare to be such a poet? Sure, he sometimes rhymed, but not quite as well as Dr. Seuss did, yet Shakespeare is the head honcho of poetry? Maybe poetry to you is a bunch of figurative language. In that case E.E. Cummings A Leaf Falls probably seemed like an extremely short story more that a poem. Today, an analysis of a poet’s definition of poetry will be examined. By analyzing the figurative language in Ars Poetica we will capture Archibald MacLeish’s definition of poetry. Archibald MacLeish has won numerous awards for his role in poetry. He was an American poet and the Librarian of Congress, he strongly promoted the arts. In, Ars Poetica, MacLeish defines poetry as any piece of work that describes the immortal truths of the world in a way that evokes emotion out of the audience. In lines one through eight of Ars Poetica, Archibald MacLeish uses similes to compare the silence and feel of a fruit, a medallion, a stone, and the wings of a flying bird to the silence, but the sensation of poetry. Obviously, MacLeish is not saying that all other works of literature grow mouths and start speaking to the reader, MacLeish is saying that poetry does not state anything; it evokes a sensation or an emotion out of its readers to make them “feel” something. Even though each simile is used to describe something that you feel and not hear, they each have slight variations in how they translate. For instance, in lines three and four a poem is “ Dumb, Like a medallion to the thumb” although dumb can mean silent like in lines one through eight, but it can also mean simple. MacLeish is not only saying that a poem is not words, but also feeling, he could also be extending that idea by saying that poems are not extremely complex, they are simple like the truths they teach. When...
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