Tag Archives: response

Responding to Poetry

25 Feb

Image: ‘Can I skip to step 3?’

It’s great to write poetry, but learning to respond to poetry is an excellent way of learning to improve your own writing. Remember all that work we did on creativity? Well responding to poetry is just a formal way of looking at a poem.

  1. Start by reading the poem atleast three times: once to yourself, once aloud and again to yourself.
  2. Take a pencil and underline a word from each line (or stanza if it is a long poem) that stands out to you, seems important, or maybe you just like the sound of it in the sentence.
  3. At this point it might be a good idea to define any words you don’t understand. Get out the dictionary.
  4. Now write about the topic of the poem. Look at your list of important words, as they might give you a clue. What does it make you think about the topic?  The poem _____ by ______ is about _____. It makes me think that ______. 
  5. Now put those annotation skills to good use. Can you find a: simile, metaphor, alliteration, assonance, onomatopoeia, or something else?
  6. In your notebook write about some of the things you found. Use a two column planner to organise your answer: The simile on the fourth line makes me think about how ____. 
  7. Finally respond in poetry. Use the skills you learnt when investigating creativity and apply them. Are you going to write about the same topic but change perspective? Are you going to take the structure or does it give you a good idea for a metaphor?

Image: Image: ‘Can I skip to step 3?

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Response to “Hawk Roosting” by Ted Hughes

4 Feb

                 Hawk Roosting by Ted Hughes discusses a hawk, its power, and superiority over all. The hawk in this poem is shown as an egoist, superior and having a firm connection to human beings. In fact Ted Hughes uses anthropomorphosis to create a firm bond between the human and the hawk. Therefore this poem has human behavior and qualities applied to a hawk; it attempts to show humans’ savage nature.

                Primarily Ted Hughes humanizes the hawk to underline the negative qualities which exist almost in every human. The hawk is attributed with human characteristics, behavior, and even motivation. These aspects are presented in the poem quite clearly to ensure that the reader comprehends that the hawk is a symbol of man. In fact the body parts of the hawk are humanized because they are referred to as “head” and “feet” instead of the biological names. After asserting such an idea in the readers mind the poem starts to unveil and show its true nature. It’s true nature being the man’s power and the abuse of that power which occurs in many cases.

                Superiority and power of the hawk is presented primarily by the title of the poem “Hawk Roosting”. If one has ever experienced a hawk roosting they realize that this majestic sound asserts firm power. The author used this name to create imagery of the high status of the hawk and its superiority to all other living things. In addition the first line “I sit in the top of the wood” shows the superiority of the hawk because it simply does not sit in the wood it sits in the top of the wood. Its status above all other animals in the forest, and it shows the superiority of man to all other living things on earth.

                Ted Hughes evokes the feeling that the hawk is extremely egoistic in his conduct. This is made obvious when the hawk states “it took the whole of Creation to produce my foot”. This shows the egoistic nature of the hawk and how it thinks its body is more important than any other creature on earth.  The body of the hawk is described as perfect, symmetric and balanced when the author writes “between my hooked head, and hooked feet”. This shows the solidarity of the body parts and the perfection of the hawk.

                Hawk Roosting by Ted Hughes is a poem to express to human’s their savagery, egoism and superiority to others. It explains how humans take their dominance for granted and how humans abuse their powers.