New and Selected Poems Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does the editor say Oliver is NOT trying to do with the poems in the first section?

2. When did the poet say the animal in The Measure had began her journey?

3. What does Oliver try to provide multiple avenues for in her poems?

4. In the Measure, what happens in the pinewoods?

5. What does Oliver say is NOT praying in The Real Prayers are Not the Words, but the Attention that comes First?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did Oliver feel at the beginning of Work Sometimes and why?

2. What parts of grammar does Oliver say she wants to cherish in Everything, and why?

3. In Mysteries, Four of the Simple Ones, what is personified in the last lines?

4. In Work Sometimes, what does Oliver say happiness truly is?

5. In Everything, what kind of words does Oliver say she wants to avoid in her poetry, and what examples of good words does she give?

6. In Mysteries, Four of the Simple Ones, what does Oliver ask about a turtle?

7. In Mysteries, Four of the Simple Ones, what does Oliver ask about a catbird?

8. What does Oliver state the reader has probably felt before in Work Sometimes?

9. What did Oliver compare the feet of the hawk to in The Real Prayers are Not the Words, but the Attention that Comes First?

10. What did the turtle in The Measure do when Oliver stopped to help it?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Solitude was something that Mary Oliver sought for often in this book. Where did she find it, and how did this solitude affect her writing style?

Essay Topic 2

What are some of the main examples of irony from these poems? How do these moments of irony change the tone of those poems?

Essay Topic 3

How is prose poetry different from other forms, and what other effects did prose form have on the poems written in that style?

(see the answer keys)

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