Rules for the Dance: A Handbook for Writing and Reading Metrical Verse

Rules for the Dance A Handbook for Writing and Reading Metrical Verse True ease in writing comes from art not chance As those move easiest who have learn d to dance wrote Alexander Pope The dance in the case of Oliver s brief and luminous book refers to the interwo

  • Title: Rules for the Dance: A Handbook for Writing and Reading Metrical Verse
  • Author: Mary Oliver
  • ISBN: 9780395850862
  • Page: 211
  • Format: Paperback
  • True ease in writing comes from art, not chance, As those move easiest who have learn d to dance, wrote Alexander Pope The dance, in the case of Oliver s brief and luminous book, refers to the interwoven pleasures of sound and sense to be found in some of the most celebrated and beautiful poems in the English language, from Shakespeare to Edna St Vincent Millay to True ease in writing comes from art, not chance, As those move easiest who have learn d to dance, wrote Alexander Pope The dance, in the case of Oliver s brief and luminous book, refers to the interwoven pleasures of sound and sense to be found in some of the most celebrated and beautiful poems in the English language, from Shakespeare to Edna St Vincent Millay to Robert Frost With a poet s ear and a poet s grace of expression, Oliver shows what makes a metrical poem work and enables readers, as only she can, to enter the thudding deeps and the rippling shallows of sound pleasure and rhythm pleasure that intensify both the poem s narrative and its ideas.

    • Best Read [Mary Oliver] Ó Rules for the Dance: A Handbook for Writing and Reading Metrical Verse || [Classics Book] PDF ✓
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    • thumbnail Title: Best Read [Mary Oliver] Ó Rules for the Dance: A Handbook for Writing and Reading Metrical Verse || [Classics Book] PDF ✓
      Posted by:Mary Oliver
      Published :2019-05-27T23:11:14+00:00

    One Reply to “Rules for the Dance: A Handbook for Writing and Reading Metrical Verse”

    1. A respected poet recommended this to me as a first dip into metrical poetry. Amazing! Although I have studied poetry for six years, I always avoided metrical poetry (both the reading and writing of it) because I'd had such bad, boring, or confusing experiences in high school. Oliver's book was a gentle way into the waters. Not only has my writing improved but I'm now reading for the first time the old poets--and enjoying them!

    2. This book convinced me that freedom and form are not mutually exclusive - something true in life as well as the poem. I love this book.

    3. This book is a thorough, yet concise, handbook for reading and writing metrical poetry. Aspects of meter, rhyme, and music are broken down into short, digestible chapters, with excellent in-text examples. Oliver's reading of metrical "irregularities" is fantastic, and her feel for the way form supports content leads to some insightful readings of well-loved poems. My only complaint for this book is that I found the anthology section of this book somewhat lackluster; generally, Oliver tended towa [...]

    4. Written four years after she wrote A Poetry Handbook, Mary Oliver gave us this slim, focused, nimble guide focused just on metrical verse. Succinct and well exampled throughout its short text, it describes the rules simply and clearly. Above all Rules for the Dance is a pleasure to read and play with. The appendix includes an anthology of metrical poems cited in the text but not fully quoted. That too was deeply informative and sent me dancing through poems I’d not looked at since high school, [...]

    5. Rules for the Dance is a thorough, yet concise, handbook for reading and writing metrical poetry. Aspects of meter, rhyme, and music are broken down into short, digestible chapters with excellent in-text examples. Oliver's reading of metrical 'irregularities' is fantastic, and her feel for the way form supports content leads to some insightful readings of well-loved poems. The book anthologizes many well-loved metrical poems as well, although at times I thought Oliver's choice of poems was a lit [...]

    6. This is a perfectly fine and reasonably complete guide to the basics of versification. Most of these guides to reading and writing poetry are not very different from one another--I get the feeling that they're churned out as part of the publish or perish thing. This book in particular is not substantively different from Oliver's earlier A Poetry Handbook. It's just a bit expanded. If you're looking for a guide to reading poetry, you might as well start here.

    7. This book and Oliver's A Poetry Handbook are truly all anyone needs to appreciate the art of poetry. For more:satiasreviews/201

    8. For some reason, this book deeply influenced my philosophy and theology of art making. And it opened poetry to me.

    9. This was a re-read for me, and just as delightful the second time around. Oliver's Rules for the Dance is a short course in understanding metric poetry, replete with examples (the stuff I grew up on, memorized, studied, and taught, and which still hangs around in my head, thank goodness)--and a brief anthology to close. I'm not sure a better teacher could be found for this difficult and, to some, possibly arcane subject. But Oliver will make a believer of you. She is thorough, lively, encouragin [...]

    10. Well, the book was fantastic and I learned a ton. Sadly though, I still was not a fan of metered verse by the end of the book!

    11. Oliver explains a lot and keeps it interesting, although the commentary gets a little crazy. I love section 16, with her advice on writing poetry, it's truly helpful and inspiring.

    12. For anyone interested in writing or reading metrical poetry, this book is a warm, insightful, and encouraging primer. Demonstrating her points with succinct and clear examples, Oliver explains how the different patterns and stresses are as vital to meaning as the words themselves. She examines the rhythms' relevance to various subjects ("Even as pentameter is suitable to the construct of meditation, an ordering of emotion, so tetrameter is well suited to 'story poems.'" p. 31) and offers down-to [...]

    13. It's hard to find books on how to write traditional metrical poetry. So far, all I've had in my library for years was Judson's Jerome's "The Poet's Handbook". Mary Oliver's "Rules for the Dance" is a welcome addition to my collection on the subject. If I were to say anything, they provide almost a yin and yang aspect to their approach to the subject that complements the other's style.While Jerome is curmudgeonly and critical in his pedagogy, Oliver is bright and breezy. Jerome will break down th [...]

    14. Wonderful. I was lucky enough in college to have several class periods completely devoted to scanning a single Shakespeare sonnet, "When to the sessions of sweet silent class," and we went over it, foot by foot, line by line, sound by sound. It was a "speech" class from the Theater department, not English, yet it was my first real introduction to the skills, tools, and insight available for understanding and loving the depth, subtlety, and emotional complexity of poetry--metrical poetry. So if t [...]

    15. I really liked this book. Mary Oliver is a modern poet and wrote this book about how to read and write poetry that has rhyme and metre. It was fun, as I am reading more and more poetry these days. At the end of the book she has about 50 poems that she discusses in the book, from Annabel Lee by Poe, to sonnets by Shakespeare and Donne, to Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening by Frost. Very good book and very good poets.A comment: I really like poetry that rhymes and has metre--it seems that f [...]

    16. Read this back-to-back with Mary Oliver's "A Poetry Handbook." Both books together make a sane and sound introduction to understanding, reading and writing poetry. The author is deceptively simple in her approach, her short chapters full of not only poetic conventions, but seasoned wisdom, their style approaching the aphoristic. For anyone interested in the art of poetry as a reader or writer, especially those self-taught, these two books should be on the "must read" list. The opinions of MFA st [...]

    17. In this handbook Mary Oliver teaches the technical aspects of poetry while also inspiring writers to be creative. It's a balance that she beautifully conveys it in this book. I found the information to be most helpful and even though it's a handbook, meant to teach, her word choice is always perfect. She must have the broadest vocabulary of anyone I've ever read, yet she chooses words that are not complicated and distracting. You understand the point she is making. Every time she puts pen to pap [...]

    18. How can you not love everything Mary Oliver writes? I am in the middle of reading this book. I have to say it makes me rethink why and how I write poetry. I am consciously trying to work on sound in my poetry. This book reminds me to use the timeless tools of meter and rhyme. Writing poetry is playing with sound and meaning. We have to be a little off to even consider writing poetry, engineering sound sight, so that meaning emerges. This book is a good book for teachers and writers. I don't know [...]

    19. A good introduction to poetic meter/prosody, though Mary Oliver can be a bit precious at times (the dancing metaphor, while fitting, gets a little tired after a while). I strongly recommend this book over The Sounds of Poetry by Robert Pinsky. Oliver's occasional preciousness is far more tolerable (and, indeed, kind of endearing) than Pinsky's occasional arrogance. For a more rigorous study of prosody I recommendPoetic Meter and Poetic Formby Paul Fussell.

    20. I'd classify this as a very beginner-y introduction to metrical verse—initially, I was deciding between this one and the one I wound up picking, and I vastly prefer the Fenton for teaching my intermediate forms workshop. But I do think this would be a really lovely text for enthusiastic high school students, or maybe in a first workshop enivronment, since it is a nice discussion of the basics. Very quick read.

    21. I adore Mary Oliver. For what she has given in her poetry that touches my humanity and my spirituality with depth and richness. For what she has given so I could find my own voice as I reach to touch the Soul of existence.Thank you for all your books, Mary. Thank you for accompanying me on the journey. The best to you,

    22. Like learning a new language, this key to the codes of music in lines of words is a thick thrill. At least at first. Then it changed to tasting a tiny bit like medicine. (I think it was when she moved beyond explaining the basics of rhythm and into a sketch of traditional forms.) But I let this thin guide lead me (for several months!) and was a serious student of sound and my culture's canon and felt the reward. (Patching the holes in my poetic literacy.)

    23. I tried for ages to find a really good, really accessible book on metrical poetry, and with this, I finally did. Oliver's beautiful prose gets right down to the heart of poetry, explaining not only its form but its purpose with clarity and care. Although I suspect that poets with a better grasp of meter than myself may find this a bit too simplistic, I can't imagine anyone wouldn't benefit from a look, and I would recommend this highly for any reader or writer of poetry.

    24. It's a little dryly written but it covers a lot of territory in a short span. This is more of a refresher book than an introduction. If you are already familiar with poetic devices it might move to quickly & lightly over technique. My favorite (the most inspiring) were from chapter 15 on. The anthology she pulled from was fair enough for her illustrations but doesn't represent the diverse WORLD of poetry.

    25. This is one of the better books about writing poetry that I've read or studied. I like it for its concise focus on the poet's tools but also for its choice of examples of meter and rhyme. Lastly, I like the short advice section to poets. It's as no nonsense as a book on pros0dy can be. I put it up there with Ted Kooser's The Poetry Home Repair Manual. If I was teaching a class on writing poetry, and I hope to one day, I would use these two books as my texts.

    26. I love Mary Oliver's poetry but her writing on writing leaves something to be desired. I was particularly put off by her pseudo-linguistic section that uses an outdated 1800s classification of English sounds. I can't suggest this book to anyone and I hope it's not being used to teach students poetry.

    27. This book would have been much better if the last quarter of it were not literally just a collection of poems that can easily be found online, and instead contained actual content. Ms. Oliver did a great job of including poems throughout as needed to demonstrate different concepts; an entire collection of them was not necessary.

    28. Good for beginners, contains everything you need to understand and write metrical verse. This is a book about technique, not what to write or how to find inspiration - I appreciated this very much.Love of poetry bleeds on every page, wraps you snugly in its arms or elevates you in the skies. Wonderfully poetic itself.

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