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What are the 'Essentials' of a Good Poem? - Markings 150

What are the 'Essentials' of a Good Poem?

1. Is the poem about something you actually know about (in other words a failure to write about the known usually guarantees flawed writing).

2. I recall someone responding to the question, 'What makes a good poem?' by saying 'Good poetry gives you a buzz and it's a buzz that lasts!' This simple response underscores the importance of emotion is poetry: e.g. hurt, guilt, anger, love. Make some brief comments about this on your poem.

3. What is the subject of your poem? Is it clear enough?

Is more information needed? Are any lines redundant in this respect? Is there any repeat of information?

4. What is the theme of the poem or the central idea or intention? Try and answer this in just a few words.

5. Is your poem polished? Has it been through a rigorous drafting and editing process e.g. overuse of

the, and; too many adjectives; correct line lengths and spacing; correct spelling and punctuation.

6. Is the FORM of the poem the best you could have chosen?

7. Does you poem contain any imagery? taste, sight, smell, touch and hearing. List all examples and what part of imagery they are.

8. Does you poem contain any imagery? metaphor, simile, alliteration, hyperbole, personification, oxymoron. List all examples and what part of figurative language they are.

9. What is the MOOD of the poem? Could it be made better?

10. What is the TONE of your poem? Could it be made better?

©Jeff Guess 2019


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