Must use a poem from the textbook
Literature: Approaches to Fiction, Poetry, and Drama Robert DiYanni
Similar to the thesis statement of an academic essay, the theme of a poem is the overlying main idea of the author’s work. The theme, also like a thesis statement, is an extended point or argument about a topic/subject. Unlike a thesis statement, however, the theme of a poem is the implied, rather than directly stated. Poems may also have more than one theme. The author uses details, or literary elements, in their poem to imply their main idea. Elements of poetry that contribute to the theme include tone, figures of speech, structure, sound, symbolism, and imagery. See Unit Three Resources folder and Elements of Poetry chapter of textbook for more information about the theme in a poem. In addition, review the links and resources about thematic analysis in the Course Material folder.

For this essay, choose one poem to identify and explain its implied theme.

In the introduction (one brief paragraph, approximately five to ten sentences), identify the poem and provide a brief overview of the poem. Note: This will be the only summary of the poem in your paper! Your thesis statement should answer the following question: What was the theme (main idea) the author conveyed in their work? Remember: The theme must be a complete sentence, not a word/brief phrase (subject/topic).

Your body paragraphs will back up your thesis statement by explaining how you determined the theme. Your analysis should include your experience and interpretation.

Experience: In one to two body paragraphs, explain how your real-life experience(s) helped you determine the poem’s theme. That is, could you relate to the author’s story? If so, what occurred in your life, and how does it relate to the theme? Be sure to use examples from the poem to compare to and explain the relevance/relatedness of your experience to the theme.

Interpretation: In another one to two paragraphs, identify two or three literary elements that helped you determine the theme. Explain how these literary elements were used by the author to present the theme in their poem. Include MLA-style parenthetical citations to give credit to your sources.

Your conclusion (one brief paragraph, approximately five sentences) will restate and evaluate your thesis statement; that is, reiterate your argument: What was the theme (main idea) the author conveyed in their work? Also include a brief overview of the main points that backed up your argument in your body paragraphs.

On a separate page after your concluding paragraph, include an MLA-style Works Cited page.

Essay Specifications

Length: Four to six paragraphs (introduction, two to four body paragraphs, concluding paragraph)
MLA formatting guidelines
Documentation: MLA-style in-text citations and Works Cited page
Narrative point-of-view: First-person allowed; avoid filler phrases: I think, I feel, In my opinion
Essay must be attached/uploaded to this Assignment link. See Submitting Assignments video in Course Materials folder. Emailed submissions are not accepted.
Accepted file types: Microsoft Word or PDF
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