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Beginning to Understand Poetry: Introduction

This guide is designed for students of literature, aspiring writers, and avid readers. The provided resources should point you toward establishing an understanding of structural, contextual, and societal aspects that contribute to the poetic world.



Welcome to my beginner's guide to understanding poetry! 

What IS Poetry?

Poetry is a broad discipline. Its practice is responsive to and reflective of its time and place. 
Most simply, poetry can be described as an art form that arranges language in an aesthetic manner; employing lyric, rhyme, rhythm, and much more to portray a large picture with limited words. With the exception of the Epic poem, most poetry can be considered contained in length, yet enormous volumes can and have been written about short poems. There is so much to unveil. But how do you start? 

While this collection assumes that its users have prior experience in literary studies, most of the provided resources are accessible without academic subscription. As poetry is a complex, multi-faced literary practice, there is much to consider!
Hopefully this guide can point you in a helpful direction, whether you're looking to write about poetry, broaden your comprehension, learn about your favourite poets, or share poetry of your own. 

Please find the tabbed sections above to begin exploring! 

Lydia Grant - Librarian