LITR 3731 Creative Writing

Midterm Essay on lyric poetry:

understanding, writing, teaching

5-7 paragraph essay on what you've learned about reading, writing, or teaching lyric poetry.

Refer to at least 3 of the following sources (text references required):

  • 2-3 references to textbook handout reading assignments

  • experience of writing & revising your own poem

  • workshop poems and discussions

  • other students' drafts and revisions

  • poetry model assignments 2008 (or earlier)

  • other courses and outside experience

  • course definition of lyric poetry.

Purpose: This addition to the poetry assignment makes it a more proper midterm and relieves some of the pressure of the final exam, which now may cover material since the midterm.

Question: What did you know and what have you learned about lyric poetry?

Possible contents—don’t limit yourself to these suggestions; don’t march through them like a checklist; they’re only prompts to help your essay develop:

  • Recall your previous education in lyric poetry, both through reading and writing.

  • Cite examples of lyric poems or songs that impressed you. Develop examples.

  • Distinguish lyric poetry from narrative or dramatic poetry, or from fiction, drama, & other formal genres.

  • Review any experience writing, tutoring, partnering, editing, or publishing poems (or acquaintances’ experience?).

  • Summarize your comprehension or impression of lyric poetry upon entering the course.

  • Survey new ideas and understandings from course.

  • Ask or pose questions about lyric poetry, its techniques, and purposes. What do and don't you understand? What would you like to know? (Not that answers will be automatically offered, but such questions can help you generate material and lead to critical thinking about creative writing.)

Sources for ideas and examples:

  • your own poem’s development and contents

  • other students’ poems or comments

  • textbook ideas and examples

  • examples and ideas from other courses



Grading standards:

Essay form: surface style; thematic continuity and transitions

Share the spirit of lyric poetry, which has a kind of emotional and spiritual power in addition to making basic sense.

Use recognizable terms from class but also push your ideas to new expression with your own figures of speech or terms from beyond this course.