ENGL 103; Explication (Short Paper), Poetry Presentations

ENGL 103, Spring Semester 2022

Explication (Short Paper), Poetry Presentations

For this assignment, you will write an explication of a poem from the Poetry Packet. The explication will take the form of a close reading of the poem in 1½ – 2 pages. Your explication should consider the 10 steps listed on the “How to Explicate a Poem” handout (see content area on Blackboard). It is worth 10 points.

  • For this typed, double-spaced assignment, you need write only 1½ – 2 pages. For details on formatting, consult my handout on Blackboard entitled “Formatting Your Essays.”
  • Consider the explication as a line-by-line reading of the poem. You may need to find a way of dividing the poem into logical “thought unites” (such as stanzas or sentences) to do justice to the poem in its entirety.
  • For this assignment, use appropriate literary terms from the handouts on Blackboard. [However, don’t simply say, “There is a metaphor in this poem” – identify it!]
  • Reminder: An explication does not ask “what” so much as “how” does a poem mean.

Follow-up: On the day the explications are due, you may elect to present your poem (by reading it aloud yourself or by playing a video or audio recording of the poem) and to read at least the gist of your explication of the poem to the class. [The presentations are voluntary and will not affect your grade.]

N.B. Bring two titles from the Reading Packet to class on Wednesday, March 2.

Be prepared to submit the explication exercise on Turnitin by midnight Friday, March 18. Presentations may be given in class on the same (or on a later) day.

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