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CM1 Littrature
6 Sances = 3 poesies et 3 thatres

Introduction of the story of poetry


Definition (= There
is no real definition
just some elements
which help up to
recognized a poem)


Elevated language
Non of this elements are enough to defined poetry
1st important element: Poetry is fiction; they are fictional text
Poem are based on imaginary rather than real facts, when it
explains a feeling it is not about a real life experience
Difference between love letter and love poem even if it is the same
Presentation on the page: Prose is written in sentences, a sentence
is a grammatical unit
Poetry is based on two superpose unit and a rhythmical one and a
grammatical one
Sometimes lines may correspond with grammatical sentence
A poem is not just a vehicle of meaning what meters is also the way
it is said but how it is said = The signifier
In poetry a signify cannot be distinguish of a signifier
A poem is not just a message, we cant sum up a poem, it cannot be
paraphrase but it is an experience
Besides the poetry exploit the materiality of signifier = exploit
things like sounds, punctuation, typography, the disposition
of the poem on the page
It is often a reflexive or self-referential = It tells sth of the poem

Christopher Smart Jubilate Agno

For = Anaphora = repetition at the beginning of each lines.
At the end at each sentences there is a . so lines and
sentences corresponded.
This is just to say
Each lines dont correspond with sentences
It was a note let to his wife
Here the poem does not refer to meter, there is no rimes
Capital letter at the beginning of each lines

1. Metrical poetry in English: stress-syllable meters

Metrics = Study of meter
Not all poems use meter, not all are based on a regular Rhythm
The poems which are not based on any meter are written in free verse

Rhythm and

Rhythm = Provided
by the alienation
between stressed
and unstressed
Meter = when the
rhythm is regular, is

A. Kinds of feet

In metrical poetry a line is divided in several feet (not

the same as in France, we dont count syllable, a foot is
not one syllable). A foot is a group of syllables, some of
which are stressed and some unstressed
The iamb: (adj: iambic) A two syllable foot (pied de 2 syllabes)
consisting on an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable.
(Unstressed U sur la syllabe accentu / Stressed I sur la syllabee
The trochee: (adj: trochaic) It is a two syllable foot consisting of a
stressed syllable followed by an unstressed syllable.
The spondee: (adj: spondaic) is a two syllable foot consisting of
two consecutive stressed syllables. If there is most iambic pattern
and just one spondee = Spondaic constitution
Pyrrhic (adj: pyrrhic) 2 syllables foot consistinf of two consecutive
unstressed syllables.
The anapaest: (adj: anapaestic) (astuce: quand on prononce le
mot on a les types daccent.) It is a free syllable foot consisting of
two unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable.
The dactyl: (adj: dactylic) 3 syllables consisting of one syllable
stressed following by two unstressed syllables.

One foot = Monometer

B. Meter

o A five-foot line: predominantly iamb, will be called iambic

o A rhythm that is based on two single feet is called binary
o If the rhythm is based on three single feet is called ternary. It is
creating a kind of dancing effect, but it is much less frequent
o When a iamb is replaced by a trochee or a spondee, it is called
spondaic or trochaic substitution or inversion. (It is when only
one or two foot are changed)

C. Regular and irregular lines

o Regular line = contains only one type of feet

BUT: Iambic pentameter not contain systematically only iambic foot,
there is irregularity in the lines but it is called iambic pentameter
o Irregular line = doesnt contain only one kind of feet

Quand on essaye de trouver le nom dun type de vers il faut

sinterresser au pied qui prdomine tant pis sil y a des

1. Free verse

Poetry, poems which are not based on any regular rhythmical pattern

2. The structure of lines

Internal form or

Rhyme and sound


o When there is a pause or a break at the end of the line, this line is
said to be end-stopped
o A caesura is a pause or a break in a line
o Enjambment or Run-on-line


o Rhyme = repetition in the rhyming verse of the last stressed vowel

and of all the sounds following that vowel

o End-rhymes = occur at the end of lines

o Internal rhymes = occur with a line
o Masculine rhymes = affect only single stressed syllables (AABB
and stressed always)
o Feminine rhymes = affect a stressed syllable and the unstressed
syllable which follow it (ABAB and Stressed unstressed)
o Rhyme squeems = many poem use end rhymes with specific

Rhyme schema
AABB = Rhyming couplets
ABAB = Alternate rhymes
ABBA = Enclosing rhymes
Terza Rima = schema selon lequelle on a des terminaison en ABA
o Ottava Rima = schema qui joue sur 8 rimes ABABABCC
o Eye-rhyme = (histories / replies) = ca ne rime pas mais il scrit
pareil la fin = a rime pour les yeux et pas pour les oreilles
o Blank verse = verse which does not use rhyme at all

Poetic genres

Fixed forms

Poem in which the metrical pattern end or the rhyme fixed a

predetermine pattern
o The sonnet: From the Italian Sonetto and means a song, has 14
lines usually in iambic pentameter
Petrarchan sonnet: Derive the Italian poet Petrarch who
popularize the sonnet. 2 quatrains in enclosing rhymes
(ABBA / ABBA) + a sestet (=strophe de 6 vers) with CD
rhymes or CDE rhymes (cf. 2eme poem J.Don)
Spenserian sonnet: named after a poet Spenser. 3 quatrains
+ a couplet rhyming = ABAB BCBC CDCD EE (cf. page 1
premier pome)
Shakespeare sonnet: Also called an English sonnet. 3
quatrains in Alternate rhymes + A rhyme couplet = ABAB
CDCD EFEF GG (cf page 2 de Shakespeare)
o The villanelle: 19 lines in six stanzas. 5 tersest + a quatrain.
Only had 2 rhymes = Line 1 is repeated on line 6, 12 and 18.
Line 3 is repeated on lines 9, 15, 19. (cf. page 13 do not go gentle
by D.Thomas = the most famous villanelle)
o Haku: Japanese form of syllabic verse. Very short. 3 lines of 5, 7
and 5 syllables (ici on compte en syllable). Typically present a very
intense emotion/experience. (cf. page 20)
o The limerick: Form of non-sense verse (=poem absurd) usually
describing a character eccentricities. 5 anapaestic lines

Other poetic genres

o The ballad: Narrative poem (=comme un rcit). Usually it was

made to be sang. Oral tradition. Use very simple language, subject.
Quatrains rhyming ABCB with 4 stresses on line 1 and 3. 3
stresses on line 2 and 4. Usually there is a chorus/refrain

o The elegy: Lament (= un plainte) for the death of someone/the

disappearance of something.

o The ode: Lyric poem, often very long, characterise by an

elaborate stanza structure. Serious tone. Usually celebrate a
person, an event or a lofty subject.
Figure de style


o Alliteration = the repetition of the initial consonants in several

syllables (Green, Golden)
o Consonant = repetition of a consonant sounds wherever it is placed
o Assonance = repetition of vowel of diphthong sounds
A line = un vers
Verse = De la posie
A verse = a stanza
A stanza = une strophe
Anacusis = when the line start with 1 or 2 extra unstressed syllables
before the beginning of the regular pattern (Une ou 2 syllables
ajouts au dbut du vers qui ne sont pas accentues)
Catalexis = When a line ends with an incomplete or truncated foot
(cut) and then the final foot is set to be defective