1. Title

THE TITLE. A poem’s title does not always have great significance. The title might not make much sense until you start to understand the poem. The title “The Sick Rose” (by William Blake) gives us a reasonable hint about what the poem means. T. S. Eliot’s title “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” seems to give some direction, but after the reading the poem, the title might be considered misleading or ironic. Wallace Stevens’ title “The Snow Man” gives very little help.

  • Does the title immediately influence what you are about to read, or does it, at the moment you begin your first reading, remain mysterious or vague?
  • After you have thought about the poem, how do you think the title relates to it?