Some terminology that may help some aspiring poets and writers out there. Most info is from How Poetry Works by Phil Roberts.
Alliteration -One of the phonemic patterns of poetry and other forms of speech, in which one or more of the opening consonants of a stressed syllable are repeated in other stressed positions in the line. The phrase ‘slippery and slimy sludge’ alliterates. Alliteration may also be partial: some, but not all, of the leading consonants are repeated; as, for example, in the phrase ‘tall travellers’.
Anthropomorphism- Giving human shape or characteristics to a god, an animal or an inanimate thing. ‘The house crouched waiting.’
Assonance - One of the phonemic patterns of poetry featuring repetition of the stressed vowel sound(s). The phrase ‘trade a plate of steak’ is an example of assonance. Other types include allitero-assonance, in which both the opening consonants and the vowels are repeated in other stressed syllables (an example is ‘playful plaintiff’) and rhyme, in which both the vowels and the closing consonants are repeated.
Ballad - The ‘traditional ballad’ is a narrative song or poem characterised by short stanzas (the ‘paragraph’ of a poem) and simple words. ‘Lord Randal’ (No. 14) is an example. The term ‘literary ballad’ is generally used now to describe a nineteenth or twentieth century poem written by a literary poet in imitation of the form and spirit of the ‘traditional ballad’.
Blank verse - Unrhymed five-stress lines, of principally duple rhythm. Milton’sParadise Lostand most of Shakespeare’s plays are written in blank verse.
Caesura - An extra-metrical pause in a line of poetry. It is usually indicated by a strong punctuation mark. E.g. ‘There was no trouble. Soon the wheel was fixed,’
Couplet - Two lines of the same metre which have a common rhyme.
Elegy - A formal poem of lament, often for a particular person.
Enjambment - The effect caused when the semantic content of a phrase carries on beyond the end of the line and this is accompanied by opening weak syllables in the following line. Often shown by an absence of any punctuation at the end of the line.
Epic - A long narrative poem on a great and serious subject. The most ambitious of all poetic genres. E.g.Beowulf, Iliad, Odyssey.
Form - The physical appearance of poetry on a page; also, the structural units of the poem - couplet, quatrain, and so forth - and their arrangement.
Hyperbole - A type of figurative speech characterised by exaggeration or overstatement: ‘I died of embarrassment.’
Imagery - Vivid description of a visible object or scene.
Metaphor - In which one thing is described in terms of some other thing: ‘Beauty is but a flower’.
Onomatopoeia - A word whose sound symbolises its meaning; for example, ‘hiss’, ‘pop’.
Rhythm - The recurrence of groups of stressed and unstressed (or strong and weak) syllables in speech. In poetry, the rhythmic unit is the ‘measure’. which opens with a single stressed syllable and may conventionally include up to three weak syllables after the stress.
Run-on-line - Lines in which meaning and syntax lead the ear quickly past the end and on to the beginning of the next line. For example:
It’s sweet to write upon the sandy
shore the thoughts you find too handy …
Simile - Figure of speech in which an explicit comparison is made between two things, using either ‘like’ or ‘as’ : ‘the stars glittered like frost’, or ‘as empty as a drum’.
Sonnet - A fixed form, usually of fourteen lines, each consisting of five measures of a duplet metre. The two principle types are the English sonnet (also called the Shakespearean sonnet), consisting of a douzain and a concluding couplet; and the Italian sonnet (Petrarchan sonnet), consisting of an octave and a concluding sestet. They typically follow a preset rhyme-scheme, and develop an idea in a way which parallels the major structural divisions of the poem.
Stanza - A group of lines forming one of the divisions of a poem.
Always consider imagery, diction, form, theme and tone when writing poetry. If analysing it, also focus on response (your own judgement).
Imagery - Its effects. Are comparisons made? What exactly to they illustrate? How appropriate/effective are they?
Diction - Choose your type of words carefully. Have they got specific associations? How do they relate to the subject? What effects do they produce? Is sound significant?
Form - Sonnet, ode, epic, couplets or free verse? Number and shape of stanzas. Use of rhyme and sound patterns. Changing rhythms. Historical context.
Theme - Is there a recurring theme? If so - how does it progress?
Tone - Is there a dominant tone? How is it produced? Is it constant or does it change? E.g. Reflection … celebration … despair … disgust … irony.