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Poetry Form and Function, Great lines from poems and songs

Updated on August 19, 2016
Austinstar profile image

Lela earned a B.A. degree in Journalism from Sam Houston University in Huntsville, TX. She has been writing for the online world for years.

Best song poem ever written!

Great lines from poems and songs

"The sound of silence" (Simon and Garfunkel song)

Poems evoke odd thoughts. They challenge us to see, hear, or experience things we have never imagined. Whoever thought of this four word line is a poetry master! Songwriters Gordon Jenkins and Nat Simon wrote it and I have no idea which one came up with the line. Actually the entire poem is master level poetry work and is used as an example of good style and poetic form in just about every poetry class I ever took. Lot's of excellent lines in this poem.

'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves - Jabberwocky by Lewis Caroll

What the heck is this? What does "brillig" mean? Slithy toves? And the whole rest of the poem goes on and on with words that sound truly foreign to our ears. If you ever get a chance to hear this poem read out loud by a performer, you will be amazed! The words roll off the tongue and entrance the audience with poetic sounds. It's a poem to be immersed in, to be savored like a great stew. Poems are supposed to be lyrical and fun! Watch the video and read along.

`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

"Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!"

He took his vorpal sword in hand:
Long time the manxome foe he sought --
So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in uffish thought he stood,
The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back.

"And, has thou slain the Jabberwock?
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!'
He chortled in his joy.

`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the momerathsoutgrabe.

Jaberwocky by Lewis Caroll

Robert Frost - Great American Poet

Robert Frost Poet
Robert Frost Poet | Source

"The road not taken" by Robert Frost

Another four word line that totally sums up life as we know it. If only I had done this, or if only I had been born rich, or if only I could be beautiful, rich, and famous like Angelina Jolie! Yep, if only I had taken a different road in life, well, things would be different. That line is profound in its meaning. That is why poetry is so powerful. It neatly sums up whole concepts.

Alliteration as a poetry tool

Once, while in poetry class, a friend sent me a written note using alliteration. Maybe we were discussing it that day or something, but the note read:

Lela Lawler Licks Lollipops Lasciviously.

Yes, that used to be my name. Strange that when I married, my husband also has two L's in his last name. So I still have an affinity for the letter L. I would love to hear from this friend again and if you know of him, David Peabody, then tell him to get in touch with me. I'm on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter (as Austinstar), LinkedIn,, etc..

David is quite the poet and novelist. I once read a book by him under a pseudonym, Tristan McAvery. The book was called Tea for Twenty. Guess he loves his alliteration.

There are many poems that use alliteration as a tool. Jabberwocky is one and the other famous one is...

Between the Breasts by e e cummings

e e cummings is one of my favorite poets. We have the same birthday too. Maybe that's why. His poems are very alliterative. Quite easy to read. Many are sensual in nature, which is another good reason for writing poetry.

Lines from songs that stick in my head

All lyrics for songs are poems. Poetry form and function lends itself to songwriting. The best lyrics are those that get stuck in your head. You know those song fragments that you just can't get out of your inner mind? That's the purpose of poetry, to be sticky.

Here are the lines from songs that I have wandering around in my brain, you guess the song:

  • "out in the West Texas town of El Paso, I fell in love with a Mexican girl"
  • "all we are is dust in the wind, Same old song, just a drop of water in an endless sea
    All we do, crumbles to the ground, though we refuse to see"
  • "pleased to meet you, hope you guess my name"
  • "I've been a miner for a heart of gold"
  • "the warden threw a party in the county jail, the prison band was there and they began to wail"
  • "smoke on the water and fire in the sky"
  • "she's got a smile that it seems to me reminds me of childhood memories"
  • "every day for us, something new, open mind for a different view"
  • "why do we scream at each other? This is what it sounds like when doves cry"
  • "deep down in Louisiana close to New Orleans, way back up in the woods among the evergreens"
  • "the full moon is calling, the fever is high, and the wicked wind whispers and moans"
  • "Mother, mother, there's too many of you crying, Brother, brother, there's too many of you dying"
  • "imagine there's no heaven, it's easy if you try"
  • "And she said "we are all just prisoners here, of our own device"
  • "Son, can you play me a memory? I'm not really sure how it goes, but it's sad and it's sweet, and I knew it complete, when I wore a younger man's clothes"

They say when you get a song stuck in your head, you're supposed to either sing the whole song through or start singing another song or hum the 1812 Overture. Well, whatever works, but listen to the flow of the words - that is the sound of poetry.

Poetry For Dummies - How to Write Poetry

Poetry For Dummies
Poetry For Dummies

Get expert tips on writing your own poems

Understand and appreciate the pleasures of poetry

Can't tell the difference between an iamb and a trochee? Don't worry! This friendly guide demystifies all that complicated jargon and explains how to truly enjoy poetry. The authors walk you through poetry's history, show you where to find exciting contemporary readings, and provide easy exercises to stimulate your own poetic juices.


© 2010 Lela

Comments - What's stuck in your head?

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    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      That's a pretty cool talent. I love music and art. I can play a little...Laurel sings - very talented but doesn't see how good she is. She sang an Alicia Keys song at a hotel in the Bahamas - brought the house down:) was perfect. I'm going to record her singing - write a hub and have people vote whether she should be a singer or a police officer:) haha! Thanks!

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Not me - Bob is the musical genius of this family! He hears a song once and it's instantly imprinted on his brain.

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Easy peasy lemon squeesy - Hotel California - Eagles:)

      "I've seen sunny days that I thought would never end"...

      Hey I bet you were good at Name that Tune!!

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Fire by Bruce Springsteen! That was way too easy. Here's one:

      And in the master's chambers

      They gathered for their feasts,

      They stabbed it with their steely knifes,

      But the just can't kill the beast.

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Haha! You got me! I really thought I was going to fool you with that one:) it has been a favorite since grade school!

      After reading this hub last night - I was inspired to load new music from iTunes! One more for you then I promise I'll stop the game - this is one of my favs and where two of my birds names came from;

      "I'm riding in your car - you turn on the radio - you're pulling me close - I just say no"

      I'm gonna play it now...!

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Another Simon and Garfunkle song! 59th St. Bridge Song. Feelin' Groovy Man!

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      You won! I love tthat song - the original one. I'm stuck on a lot of the old stuff. I am going to listen to The Mommas and The Poppas while I clean up now - I'm gonna do some California Dreaming:)

      But what about this one - it isn't a pop or rock -

      "Slow down - you move to fast - you gotta make the morning last" - lol!

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Lean on Me. I just might have a problem that you'll understand. We all need somebody to lean on!

      It's a great song...

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Awesome - I love your music selection! I'm going to have to google Band on the Run to see if that is #5:). Here I have one for you - one of my all time favs -

      "Sometimes in our lives, we all have pain, we all have sorrow, but if we are wise, we always know there will be tomorrow"

      I have always loved that song!

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 7 years ago

      Nicely written hub. Thanks for sharing your wonderful thoughts on poetry. Rated up and awesome, beautiful, and useful!

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 7 years ago from Georgia

      You've chosen some powerful lines - some of my faves!

    • Pollyannalana profile image

      Pollyannalana 8 years ago from US

      Thumbs up!

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 8 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Oh tish tosh, ralwus. Saying you know nothing of poetry is like saying you can't spell. Ha! I know better and yes, I have the schooling to know the difference between good poetry and crappy crap.

      I think you write very well and I will try and find time to read more! Dang that time thing.

    • profile image

      ralwus 8 years ago

      Ahhh yes, The Sound of Silence. I have always regarded that as one of the finest poems put to music. I love your profile and you are lucky in that you had good schooling. I know nothing of poetry, but I do love some of the old masters and Jabberwocky is one of the best. I love Caroll, I think he had some inspiration like so many back then with readily available drugs. LOL Now I need to check out some of your poetry and I am on facebook as well, CC Riter. I won't list them, but I know each one of those lines and the songs. Peace, CC

    • ainehannah profile image

      Aine O'Connor 8 years ago from Dublin

      Hey Austinstar, you've just sent me on a Youtube trail of Neil Young, and Warren Zevon (thought that was " the full moon is calling, the fever is high, and the wicked wind whispers and moans" - it wasn't but it sure brightened my day. Am just off to check out your poetry. Given your prose is pretty poetic I've a happy anticipation - thanks. BTW had a Marvin Gaye and Prince day yesterday, great minds, eh?

    • profile image

      getmyback 8 years ago

      Enough is Enough i say must go write and ply



      btw check out hubber kimberlyslyrics

    • profile image

      getmyback 8 years ago

      or I could just keep commenting all night right here

    • profile image

      getmyback 8 years ago

      Sorry stealing this hub and saying it's mine ha

      nice job


    • profile image

      getmyback 8 years ago

      Thank you I bookmarked this

      as a lyricist this helps too

      Your latest fan


    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 8 years ago

      To the contrary you know a great deal about poetry. Love this hub.