How To Read Poetry
Poetry is meant to be read aloud. Here's how to enjoy poetry
Reading poetry aloud can heighten your enjoyment of it. Don't limit yourself to minor poets. Read the greats. Try imitating their styles and sharing the results with your family and friends. Here are some simple suggestions that will improve your understanding of poetry and increase your enjoyment of it.
Haiku are simple poems that follow a simple pattern. Their beauty lies within their simplicity. Go to your local library and check out a book of haiku. First, read the poems silently. Next, read them aloud. Savor them. Now, try writing your own. The first line should be composed of five syllables. The second line will have seven syllables. The last line will have five syllables. Look out your window and write a haiku based upon something you see.
Read works by Poe, Shakespeare, Blake, and Sylvia Plath. Again, read them silently and then, aloud. Feel the words on your tongue. Choose a favorite poem by anyone of these poets and write your own version of it.
Look for examples of alliteration. This is the repetition of a beginning sound, letter, or letters at the beginning of words within a poem. A boy walking through a puddle may splish, splash, splatter and spray water into the air.
Practice identifying and writing similes. Lips like roses, hair as soft as silk, and eyes like diamonds are all common examples of similes. Find a poem that uses similes. Mimic it.
Study poetic techniques. Do you prefer rhyming poetry or free verse? Form educated opinions by reading a wide range of poetry.
Write! Read your poems aloud when you finish them. What do they sound like? Are they pleasing to your ear? If not, rewrite! Read more poetry.
But keep trying. You probably didn't enjoy riding your bike the first time you tried, either. Like anything else, all it takes is practice to learn to read and write poetry for your own personal enjoyment.