Which Of The Following Is A Strategy For Reading Poetry

Analysis of Poetic Structure

Reading poetry can be a daunting task, even for the most experienced reader. But understanding a poem’s structure is key to unlocking its meaning. Many poems are structured using patterns and techniques that offer clues about the poem’s overall message. Knowing the patterns and techniques used in a work of poetry can help to decode the complexities contained in its text.

Metaphor and Symbolism

Metaphors and symbols are commonly used in poetic literature to convey a deeper meaning or emotion. Metaphors are used to compare two unlike things, while symbols can be used to represent an idea or emotion. By looking at a poem’s metaphors and symbols, you can gain an understanding of the hidden messages within the language of the poem.

Rhyme and Repetition

Rhyme and repetition are often used to emphasize a message in poetry. Rhyme helps to add cadence and rhythm to a poem, making it easier for the reader to understand. Repetition can also be used to make a theme or idea more prominent. By looking for rhymes and repetitions within a poem, you can learn about its overall narrative and its structure.

Word Choice and Structure

The words chosen and the structure in which they are arranged can offer insight into the overall meaning of a poem. Poetic structure is often used to convey a particular feeling or emotion. By closely analyzing the words and the structure of the lines, you can uncover the overall meaning.

Contextual Study

When reading a poem, it is important to know the context in which the poem was written. This can help to unearth the hidden messages contained within it. Knowing historical, political and social events that were taking place can help you to better understand the author’s message.

Analysis of Tone

The tone of a poem can provide valuable insight into its meaning. Poets can use a multitude of techniques to change the reading experience. By recognizing the tone, you can gain a better understanding of the overall narrative.

Exploring Literary Devices

Exploring literary devices can also be an important strategy for reading poetry. Alliteration, assonance and onomatopoeia can be used to convey a variety of different messages. By being aware of these techniques and recognizing how they are used within a poem, you can understand the subtle messages embedded within the text.

Comparison of Literary Genres and Styles

It can also be beneficial to compare different styles and genres of poetry when reading. Each genre of poetry has its own set of conventions and expectations. By looking at different types of works, you can gain an understanding of the conventions and structures used by each.

Appreciation of Literary Theory

Reading poetry and understanding its structure is not just about learning the conventions and techniques of the genre. It is also about learning how to read literature from different perspectives. By understanding literary theory and how it applies to different works, you can gain an understanding of the importance of context when dissecting a piece of literature.

Exploring Language and Syntax

The language and syntax of a poem can also help to uncover its overall message. By exploring unfamiliar terms, as well as the structure of sentences, you can gain an understanding of the meaning of a poem. By looking at the language used, you can gain insight into the author’s intent.

Exploring Imagery and Similes

The use of imagery and similes is a key part of any poem. By recognizing where these elements are used within a work, you can gain insight into the message the author is trying to convey. Imagery can be used to evoke emotions, while similes can be used to liken something to a different concept.

Discussion of Themes and Ideologies

Exploring the themes and ideologies present within a poem can be a powerful tool for understanding the work. By recognizing the ideology presented, you can gain insight into the message of the poem and the underlying themes.

Analysis of Form and Content

The form and content of a poem can also help to uncover its message. By looking at the structure of the lines and the meaning of the words, you can gain an understanding of the overall purpose of the poem. The form and content of a poem can unlock deeper levels of meaning.


Overall, there are many strategies for reading poetry. By understanding the structure, the language and the use of literary devices, you can uncover the hidden messages inherent in a work. Additionally, exploring themes and ideologies, as well as form and content, can help to bring deeper insight into the piece. By being aware of all these elements, an informed reader can gain a richer understanding of the poem.

Dannah Hannah is an established poet and author who loves to write about the beauty and power of poetry. She has published several collections of her own works, as well as articles and reviews on poets she admires. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English, with a specialization in poetics, from the University of Toronto. Hannah was also a panelist for the 2017 Futurepoem book Poetry + Social Justice, which aimed to bring attention to activism through poetry. She lives in Toronto, Canada, where she continues to write and explore the depths of poetry and its influence on our lives.

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