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GCSE English > Poetry Essay

The following subheadings show the different areas that you should focus on when analysing a poem...

Subject matter of the poem, or what it is about. Could also be what the message is or what type of poem it is (e.g. love / war poetry)

This is the poet's choice of vocabulary. You need to comment on this choice of words and say how effective you find it.

This is how the poet chooses to write - any poetic devices he/she may use.

The mood or voice of the poem. Certain words create a mood, or the use of sarcasm or irony create their own mood.

This is the division of the poem into stanzas. When analyzing the structure, you need to decide why the poet has divided the poem as they have (e.g. If a line or word is isolated, this may be to emphasise it). You also need to consider the rhyme scheme and the rhythm - whether the words / sentences flow or not...

Personal Response
Your own personal response should be evident throughout the essay. (e.g. If you identify a simile, you must include how effective you find it, with reasons)

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