The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Poetry Test | Final Test - Hard

J. D. Mcclatchy
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 119 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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. Marilyn Hacker previously worked as a salesperson. Which item did Hacker sell?

2. Rita Dove was named as the ____ Poet Laureate.

3. Which poet wrote "Another Life?"

4. Richard Howard worked as a writer and editor of dictionaries. What is the proper name for a person who has that job?

5. Charles Wright wrote an homage to which famous painter?

Short Essay Questions

1. What themes are most often seen in Gary Snyder's work? What does Snyder credit with helping him focus on the inner world?

2. What prompted Anne Sexton to begin writing poetry? What was Sexton's style? What are some characteristics of Sexton's style?

3. What is Mary Oliver's style? How does Mary Oliver incorporate nature into her work? What unique gift does Oliver have as a poet?

4. Examine the theme and meaning contained in Rita Dove's "Adolescence - II." How does the theme link to Dove's other work?

5. Who was the biggest influence in Sylvia Plath's life? When did they meet? What type of work is most often related to Plath? Plath is often grouped with which poets?

6. Discuss Michael S. Palmer's poem "H." what is the main theme of the poem? Does the reader get a clear vision of Palmer's insight? What might the poem mean?

7. Where was Charles Simic born? How did his youth affect his poetry? What themes are often seen in Simic's work? What technique is often used by Simic?

8. What type of work did Richard Howard produce? Examine Richard Howard's fascination with the figures of 19th century high society. Also list some of the poems contained in his section.

9. Jay Wright had a way of combining facts about various cultures and relating them to his heritage. Discuss Wright's heritage and how he celebrated the accomplishments of others.

10. Dave Smith's work has been compared to which famous poets? Discuss Smith's earlier poems and the evolution of his work.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In several of the daily lessons, students were asked to keep and update a poetry journal. Explain in detail the type of entries kept in both journals and how the information in each may be used to create an effective and vivid poem. Include examples.

Essay Topic 2

Michael Palmer is considered to be one of the Language Poets. Explain Palmer's beliefs regarding the proper use of language in regards to his own poetry and the poetry of beginning poets. How might preconceived notions of language interfere with a poet's work? Do you agree think that preconceived notions of language can be a hindrance? Are the preconceptions more or less difficult when working with a foreign language as opposed to English? How can one overcome these preconceived notions and habits? Give an example of at least three words that may conjure up preconceived notions and create an alternative view for each.

Essay Topic 3

In several of the works, the poets manage to create characters and evoke emotions through the use of monologue and/or dialogue. As such the poet requires the reader to experience a situation through the eyes of another, effectively creating or using another voice rather than one's own. Explain how this might be done. If you were going to create a poem written in this way, what voice would you choose to use? How would you achieve the transformation? Would it be easier or more difficult to choose a fictional character? Would it be easier or more difficult to write through the eyes of the opposite sex?

(see the answer keys)

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