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Archie Randolph Ammons Writing Styles in The City Limits

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"The City Limits" uses a poetic form called Sprung Rhythm. This form requires only that the same number of stressed syllables occurs on each line of the poem. The unstressed syllables are not counted, and can vary from line to line. The effect that this creates is one of simultaneous order, because of the consistency in accented syllables, and disorder, because of the variable number of overall syllables per line. In this case, the duality between order and disorder in the poem's form mirrors its message about the irrational and rational aspects of the universe coexisting as one.

Each line of "The City Limits" has eight stressed syllables. One-syllable words are sometimes accented, sometimes not; two-syllable words will usually have just one accented syllable; and words with more than two syllables will often have a second syllable that is stressed, though to a lesser degree than the...

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This section contains 342 words
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Poetry for Students
The City Limits from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.