Understanding Poetry By Robert Penn Warren And Cleanth Brooks

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As defined by Robert Penn Warren and Cleanth Brooks in his book ‘Understanding Poetry’ published in 1978, “poetry is a kind of saying. It is a kind that many people, until they become well acquainted with it, feel is rather peculiar and even useless. They feel this way for two reasons: the “way of saying” and the “nature of the said.” As for the way of saying, the strongly marked rhythms, the frequent appearance of rhyme, and the figurative language may seem odd and distracting; and as for the “nature of the said,” it generally contains neither a good, suspenseful story nor obviously useful information. Poetry, in short, may seem both unnatural and irrelevant. Yet poetry has existed from the time of the emergence of the human race from shadowy prehistory and has survived, in one form or another, in every society since that time. When we realize this, we may be inclined to consider the possibility that poetry only seems unnatural and irrelevant. We may even decide, on reflection, that it does spring from deep human impulses and does fulfill human needs. Probably its most obvious feature is its strongly marked rhythm. Rhythm is we know, the repetition of time of a perceptible pattern. Poetry, focuses on the feelings and attitudes in such a context, and not on the actions or ideas as such. Poetry is a response to, and an evaluation of our experience of the objective, bustling world and our ideas about it. “In the book, ‘A Poetry Handbook,’ written by Mary Oliver and

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