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Lyric Poetry

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by

Maureen McDermott

on 21 April 2014

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Transcript of Lyric Poetry

"Lyric" comes from the Greek word "lyre" which is the stringed musical instrument shown above

Ancient Greek poets used to sing their lyric poetry with the lyres
Origins are Greek
Classical Greek lyric poetry was performed live with the lyre
Sappho
Famous Greek lyric poet
Woman
Western Lyric poetry
Sonnets
Shakespeare
Petrarchan
Modern
More free verse
Lyric Poetry -> Song Lyrics
"Greensleeves"
"Shenandoah
Hymns
This is my letter to the world,
Emily Dickinson, 1862
This is my letter to the world,
That never wrote to me,-
The simple news that Nature told,
With tender majesty

Her message is committed
To hands I cannot see;
For love of her, sweet countrymen,
Judge tenderly of me!

Characteristics
Famous Lyric Poets
Definition
A short poem that
reveals the speaker's feelings, emotions, thoughts, etc.
Very Personal
Invokes things common to humanity
sadness of lives
sorrow of parting
love
friendship
fear of death
Can be sweet, sad or a blend of both
Difference from narrative/dramatic poetry
Doesn't tell a story
Doesn't need to be read out loud for dramatic effect (like a soliloquy)
Sarah, Connor, Alex, Amr, Maureen

Lyric Poetry
First person narrative
allows the speaker to directly address the reader
invoke his/her own feelings and expressions
portray his/her state of mind
Musicality
have a discernible "beat"
rhyme, rhythm
Does not tell a story with characters or actions
no characters
stream of thoughts
History/Origins
Types of Lyric Poetry
"Lyric Poetry" is a broad type of poetry that encompasses many sub-types
14-line Sonnet is most popular
Free verse
more modern/common
Other types
Ode
Elegy
Ballades
Greek Epitaphs -> modern day Haiku
Nine Lyric Poets
William Shakespeare
John Donne
Andrew Marvell
Lord George Byron
Emily Dickinson
T.S. Eliot
Musicians
Emily Dickinson
born 1830
education influenced by religion
introverted/reclusive
wrote prolifically
emotional state bred great poetry
Themes
Alienation and Loneliness
speaker: waiting for contact
balance of content and longing
devoid of people
Art and Experience
role of art as a message
art: communication between two beings
fear of art being rejected
Full transcript