Week 5

Week 5 (June 18 – 24):

Note: Because this week is mostly midterm exam prep, the readings are not as robust as usual.


  1. Elizabeth Bishop, “Sandpiper
  2. Robert Frost, “The Most of It
  3. Marianne Moore, “He ‘Digesteth Harde Yron‘”
  4. William Carlos Williams, “Poem (As the Cat)
  5. D. H. Lawrence, “Snake
  6. James Merrill, “The Black Swan
  7. William Blake, “The Tyger
  8. Christopher Smart, “Jubilate Agno” [Fragment B, For I will consider my cat, Jeoffry]
  9. Gerard Manley Hopkins, “The Wind-Hover
  10. W. B. Yeats, “Leda and the Swan


Instructional Content:

  1. Midterm exam prep
  2. Midterm exam practice
  3. Fakepoets (Activity Instructions, updated since the first round)


Task List:

  1. Monday, 6/18: View the content under “This Week” on the site banner menu for week five, including the linked poems and my instructional pages. Of special note will be the instructions for the “Fakepoets” activity. I will email enrolled students directly with assigned roles, but I encourage open online participants to choose a role that looks fun from the page and play that part. The Fakepoets round will begin Tuesday and continue through the weekend. Tweet as often as seems appropriate to you.
  2. Monday 6/18: Look at the Netvibes page. Your column will determine which poem you will argue about on the Midterm Exam Practice page. Complete the appropriate essay argument after you have read through and taken notes for yourself on the instructional pages for this course, paying special attention to the past two weeks. Time yourself if you would like my feedback to reflect your performance on the midterm — in other words, if you labor three hours on a practice essay that garners raves, that won’t necessarily be indicative of future performance on an essay exam you only have 45 minutes to complete.
  3. Tuesday, 6/19 – Sunday 6/24: Study for / take exam while playing Fakepoets.
  4. Wednesday 6/20: Check the netvibes page and see my comments on your Midterm practice. I may recommend even more practice, in which case you might try your hand at one of the other two sample practice essay prompts. Do look at your classmates’ efforts as well so you can have an accurate read on my expectations for the midterm exam. I leave it up to you whether or not you leave comments for them in their blogs, although I think it’s a good idea if you want to be able to learn from your peers.
  5. Wednesday 6/20: Read my illustration post about imagery and Maxine Kumin’s “Woodchucks,” to be found under the Examples menu link, and tweeted to #vizpoem by end of day.
  6. Thursday, 6/21-Sunday 6/24: After Thursday at 2pm you will be able to complete the midterm exam at a time and place of your choosing on the course Blackboard site, so long as you complete the exam before the end of the day on Sunday (11:59:59pm EDT). A warning: you must complete the exam at one sitting and within the time limit; you will also not be able to go back and change answers once they have been submitted.
  7. Sunday 6/24: Reflect on the Fakepoets activity. Compose a new blog post that embeds at least three role-playing tweets that you felt best conveyed the character of the poem’s persona, and make sure to explain why you thought they were successful.

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