Romantic Poetry Writing Assignment

Respond to one of the following prompts about either Walt Whitman or Emily Dickinson.

What is uniquely American about Whitman’s poetry? Consider both substance and style (what he says and how he says it).
Dickinson’s poems often introduce an idea, then develop it with a sequence of metaphoric images. Name two examples of this kind of poem. What are some of her images? How do they work as metaphors?

How to structure your essay:
Prompt #1
Introduction with thesis statement that tells what makes Whitman’s poems distinctly American.
One paragraph highlighting one uniquely American ideal in one of his poems, using 2-3 examples from the poem.
One paragraph highlighting another uniquely American characteristic from the same or another poem, using 2-3 examples.
Concluding paragraph that summarizes the points made.

Prompt #2
Introduction with a thesis statement explaining how you feel Emily Dickinson uses metaphor in her poems.
One paragraph highlighting examples of metaphor from one of her poems and how this creates meaning, using 2-3 examples from the poem.
One paragraph highlighting examples of metaphor from the same or another one of her poems and how this creates meaning, using 2-3 examples.
Concluding paragraph that summarizes the points made.

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