Tag Archives: anaphora

Prompt April 18 2020

Today’s prompt is about Anaphora.
Anaphora is the intentional repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of a sentence or a clause. For example, Biblical Psalms often repeated the phrase “O Lord” at the beginning of each line of a prayer. Anaphora is a popular rhetorical device used for added emphasis in spoken word poetry and speeches. The repetition adds cadence, and it sounds rhythmic and hence easy to memorize, not to mention the emotional impact.

Have you ever counted the number of occurrences of the phrase, “I have a dream” in Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr speech?

“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.” I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state, sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.”

Read it aloud to feel the impact.

Read Charles Dickens’s opening of “A Tale of Two Cities.”

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”

Additionally, check out the lyrics to the song “I Envy the Wind” by Lucinda Williams.

Write a poem that makes use of anaphora.

As usual, you can post your poem here if you like. You will need a password. Write to theliterarynest@gmail.com if you need the password.