In this lesson, students will learn how to distinctly identify or use the two main methods of communicating a literary message to the audience.
1. Poetry and Prose: What’s the Difference? Nearly all writing shares the goal of communicating a message to an audience, but how that message is communicated can differ greatly. The divisions between poetry and prose aren’t clear-cut, but here are some generally accepted differences. Prose Poetry Most everyday writing is in prose Poetry is typically reserved for form. expressing something special in an artistic way. The language of prose is typically The language of poetry tends to be straightforward without much more expressive or decorated, with decoration. comparisons, rhyme, and rhythm contributing to a different sound and feel. Ideas are contained in sentences that Ideas are contained in lines that may are arranged into paragraphs. or may not be sentences. Lines are arranged in stanzas. There are no line breaks. Sentences Poetry uses line breaks for various run to the right margin. reasons—to follow a formatted rhythm or to emphasize an idea. Lines can run extremely long or be as short as one word or letter. The first word of each sentence is Traditionally, the first letter of every capitalized. line is capitalized, but many modern poets choose not to follow this rule strictly. Prose looks like large blocks of The shape of poetry can vary words. depending on line length and the intent of the poet.