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    Epistle Poem Tone Analysis

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    In order to better understand and work with tone, this posting offers an example and starting tip.

    Epistle (pronounced e-PISS-ul) is a poetic form that dates back to ancient Rome and to the Bible. It is a poem written in the form of a letter. The term epistle comes from the Latin word epistola, which means letter. It was used to express love, philosophy, religion and morality.
    Most people who think of epistles think of the Bible. Many of the books in the New Testament are epistles, especially the Epistles of St. Paul. The poet Robert Burns also frequently wrote epistles, as did Alexander Pope.
    Over the past hundred years, as the telephone took over for letter writing, letters became less personal and more formal or business related. The concept of writing letters to relatives, friends, colleagues and lovers went out of fashion. In the last few years, however, letter writing has had a rebirth of sorts as the Internet grew in prominence and people began to send e-mail to each other.
    There are no meter or rhyme requirements for an epistle. Epistle is more a form of voice and persona. A poet can address their epistle to a real or imaginary person and express their views or take on the character of a different writer. The wonderful quality of an epistle is that it can be such a freeing form. The tone can be formal or use very personalized voices. The poems can be many pages long or as short as a post card.
    Some things you should keep in mind when writing the epistle are who is writing the letter, who is the letter being written to, and how you would address that person. What would interest the writer and the recipient? How formal or informal would the writer be when addressing that person?
    Notes To Shelly
    Anyone who would give me
    A Winnie-the-Pooh book for Christmas
    Deserves the benefit of the doubt
    Still, what will it be
    To have you disappear
    Don't make it forever.
    Got your postcard today
    Read all twenty-four words
    Twelve times
    Saw Rocky Horror again tonight
    And I thought about your first time
    And your devirginization
    Afterwards I drove under
    Every overpass I could find
    First date since you left
    Took her to dinner
    At the Mexican restaurant
    You told me gave you food poisoning
    I never told you I'd wait
    But I didn't want to take her
    Anywhere I'd go with you
    I had a feeling this morning
    That I would find a letter from you
    In my mailbox
    You know better than I
    That it was empty
    That sounded bitter, didn't it
    Reading Márquez
    Love in the Time of Cholera
    Wanted to recite to you the passage
    About the ship captain and the Mannatees
    Instead I read it to the palo verde in the yard
    Much to Mr. Parra's consternation
    It's important to maintain my image.
    Ran into Maria at the mall today
    We asked each other about you
    Must be fun to be so mysterious and everything
    Maria and I ate lunch together
    She told me she's marrying Jimmy
    And she took my address
    So she can send me an invitation
    Happy Birthday
    On your behalf
    I spray painted the walls
    Of my living room black
    And splattered little specks of color all over
    To make it look like space
    The effect was different than I expected
    I feel like I'm in one of the less exiting rides
    At Disneyland
    The invitation arrived today
    John and guest
    There's nobody to take though
    Dating really didn't work out
    After you left
    I expect I'll send my regrets
    Went to the wedding after all
    Because I thought somehow
    You would make an appearance
    It would have been a good moment
    Like the mail though
    The appearance didn't come
    Instead I started talking to Tammy
    And we started dancing together
    And drinking half the punch
    She's getting over somebody
    And she said I can call any time
    I won't though
    Called Tammy today
    We got even drunker than at the wedding
    And we had to walk back to my house
    Where she took off her clothes
    In the bathroom
    And slept on the couch
    Of course your postcard
    Would arrive today
    From Arkansas of all places
    Your message simple
    Just wanted you to know I'm alive
    Don't worry
    I know
    I didn't answer the phone today
    I sat in the living room
    And watched the walls
    Late in the day I decided
    It's time for me to buy a TV again
    I repainted the living room today
    My lease is up and I decided
    That I didn't want to stay here
    I've been sending out my resume
    For a couple months now
    And I heard back from a company in Sacramento
    It seems everybody is leaving California
    Which makes it probably
    The most appropriate place for me to go
    Tammy came over last night
    And this time we didn't go drinking
    And this time she didn't sleep on the couch
    This morning, just to be different
    I asked her to come with me
    And, just to be like you
    She's quitting her job
    And jumping lease
    For the first time in a long time
    I know I will see you again
    But then, I've been wrong before

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    As you work with tone and create your Epistle Poem, please allow my idea to help. Although we are not allowed to write essays for clients, please allow my ...

    Solution Summary

    An epistle poem is analyzed. Examples and starting tips are determined.