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Quick Question About Chiasmus


silvermoon383

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In my creative writing class we're on poetry now, and for the poetry assignment we have mostly free reign to do whatever kind of poetry we want. However, I'm no poet. I don't understand it on any level, and aside from the elementary "rhyming" poems (things along the lines of roses are red, violets are blue...). While wracking my brain, chiasmus came to it. So my simple question is thus:

Is chiasmus considered a form of poetry, or is it just a literary structure/device?

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In the realm of literary devices, I think punctuation ranks last, and below that, chiasmus. We would get no points for discovering a chiasmus in Latin class. A homoioteleuton, a litotes or a pars pro toto, now that would get our Latin teachers all worked up. Chiasmus? Pffff.....

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Is chiasmus considered a form of poetry, or is it just a literary structure/device?

Chiasmus is not an English poetic form.

English poetry runs far more to the rhyming forms (sonnets, etc.), and yet more to the metered (iambic and so on) forms. However, there are many others, beginning with "free, blank verse" (which is barely distinguishable from prose).

Poets are allowed to create their own forms. One is illustrated in Psalm 119, where each line in the stanza begins with the same letter of the aleph-beth, and each stanza uses the succeeding letter. An English version might be acceptable.

However, one method that is less intensive is picking a lot of words beginning with the same letter (or sound): willow, wigeon, widow, wallow, wattle, withe, wight, ... . Then pick several and link them in an unexpected way. These are the first lines of a poem I first saw in The New Era (as I recall):

"A wigeon sat on a willow

Where never a wigeon should be

..."

All the best,

Lehi

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So I wouldn't be able to use it for this assignment then?

I wouldn't, but it is a poetic form and could meet the assignment requirements. It is not terribly easy to do well (but little is).

I'd try a Limerick before a chaiasm, and they're no walk in the park.

Here's one I wrote in honor of Home Teaching:

A faithful Home Teacher named Wright

Could travel much faster than light.

He set out one May in a relative way,

And did April's Home Teaching that night.

Of course, I copied one of the themes and that's not always seen in a good light.

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In my creative writing class we're on poetry now, and for the poetry assignment we have mostly free reign to do whatever kind of poetry we want. However, I'm no poet. I don't understand it on any level, and aside from the elementary "rhyming" poems (things along the lines of roses are red, violets are blue...). While wracking my brain, chiasmus came to it. So my simple question is thus:

Is chiasmus considered a form of poetry, or is it just a literary structure/device?

Some experts label it a rhetorical structure, but it can be used poetically.

A lot of poets, for example, go for visual impact (like e. e. cummings) as well as rhyme, meter, alliteration, punning, etc., and a lot nursery rhymes use it -- to the delight of children (e.g., Hickory ****ory Dock -- CENSORED).

Here's one from John Keats' "Ode on a Grecian Urn",

Beauty is truth,

Truth beauty.

.

Your teacher is trying to get you to stretch a little. Try it out. Be creative.

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Oh believe me, writing a poem all by itself is already stretching it. It took me 5 days to get a chiasmic poem on paper (and I did show chiamsus to her first, she was quite interested.)

Thanks for all the help, I get to submit it for the peer-reviewing today and I'll find out what everyone thinks of it on Thursday. When it's in for good next Tuesday I'll toss it up in here for anyone who's interested in reading it.

And out of curiosity, why do you have that "censored" after Hickory ****ory Dock?

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out of curiosity, why do you have that "censored" after Hickory ****ory Dock?

The software here automatically censors all references to a certain diminutive for "Richard" (hint: it's not "Rich" nor "Rick"), even when it's buried in a name like "Charles ****ens", or "Hickory, ****ory, Dock"

Lehi

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The software here automatically censors all references to a certain diminutive for "Richard" (hint: it's not "Rich" nor "Rick"), even when it's buried in a name like "Charles ****ens", or "Hickory, ****ory, Dock"

Lehi

Ironically, seeing it blanked out makes you instantly think of the naughty meaning of that word, whereas if you see Charles D's name uncensored, it never occurs to you to make the connection.

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Oops, sorry. I didn't mean the stars, I was wondering why he physically wrote "censored" after the name of the rhyme.

I think the answer is the same in any case.

The software automatically censors the four letters in question, and, after previewing the result of his efforts, he wanted to make sure that we knew he knew what had happened.

Lehi

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