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Poetic Devices & Examples

Mrs. Patton’s ELA Class

Figurative Language: The use of any language that goes beyond the literal meaning of words
in order to create new meaning. The most common figures of speech are simile, metaphor, and
alliteration.

Alliteration: the repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words.


"Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers."

Hyperbole: an expression of exaggeration.


"I nearly died laughing."

Idioms: expressions that have a meaning apart from the meanings of the individual words.
"It's raining cats and dogs."

Metaphor: a figure of speech that compares two unlike things, without the use of like or as.
"Her hair is silk."

Mood: the overall feeling the poem creates. Mood, or tone, for example, can be playful, sad,
lonely, angry or joyful.

Onomatopoeia: words that imitate sounds.


"Boom. Gurgle. Plink. Woof"

Personification: assigning human qualities to non-human things.


"The tropical storm slept for two days."

Puns: words with a humorous double meaning, a "play on words."


"A dog not only has a fur coat but also pants."

Rhyme: The basic definition is two words that sound alike. Rhyme is perhaps the most
recognizable convention of poetry. Rhyme helps to unify a poem.

Katie took a trip to the beach.


She brought two books, and a peach.

Rhyme Scheme: A rhyme scheme is a regular pattern of rhyme, one that is consistent
throughout the extent of the poem. See how to show a rhyme scheme below:

There once was a big brown cat a


That liked to eat a lot of mice. b
He got all round and fat a
Because they tasted so nice. b

Similes: figures of speech that compares two unlike things, using the words like or as.
"His feet were as big as boats."

Symbolism: using an object to represent an idea. A symbol means what it is and also
something more. Example: Lions often symbolize royalty.