You could want to integrate poetry into your research paper. However, as a poem is a unique resource available online, in a book, or an anthology, it can be difficult to know how to credit it correctly.
This website offers all the information you’ll need to properly cite a poem in MLA style in your paper and on your reference page, as well as how to quote poems of various lengths. This page also includes instructions for writing your citations, formatting examples, and the information you’ll need to get started.
This article adheres to the rules in the MLA Handbook, 9th edition, but it is not affiliated with the Modern Language Association.
How to quote a poem?
When quoting poetry, make sure the quotation and in-text citation are appropriately formatted to point the reader to the correct source item in the Works Cited list.
Use a slash to separate lines in a poetry quotation and include the poet’s last name in your text or parentheses after the quote. In addition, include line numbers specified in the text or a page number if the poetry is spread across multiple pages to show where the quote is located.
Include the full publication details of the source where you found the poetry in the Works Cited entry, such as a book or a website. To create Works Cited entries and in-text citations, you can use our free MLA citation generator.
You’ll need to gather information about your source before knowing how to cite lines in a poem. If possible, locate:
The poet’s names
A line, a page number, or a range of pages
The poem’s title
Original and source publication year
The publication’s name of the poem is in the form of:
The title of the poetry collection in which it is found
The name of the website where it can be found
The title of the anthology in which it appears
The name of the publishing house or the website’s owner
First and last names of the editor
How to cite a poem in MLA?
It’s not a life-or-death situation about how to MLA cite a poem: all you need is a basic understanding of the MLA citation style. Then, your poem quotations will be immaculate as your writing. Now you may easily cite a poem in MLA format.
Insert quotation marks around a single line (or part of a line) from a poem, just like any other quote. However, there are certain formatting requirements for multiple-line quotations.
If you’re quoting two or three lines, mark the line breaks with a forward slash. Before and after the slash, add a space. Make sure to follow the original text’s punctuation, capitalization, and formatting.
Poetry quotation with line breaks, for example.
“Deep in the grounds of a burnt-out hotel, / A thousand mushrooms crowd around a keyhole / Among the bathtubs and washbasins,” Mahon writes.
Use a double slash between the lines if there is a stanza break.
A poem quotation with a stanza break is an example.
“They lift weak heads in gravity and good faith. / They are pleading us, you see, in their wordless way, / To do something, to speak on their behalf,” Mahon writes next.
How to write the title of a poem??
You put poem titles in quotes while doing citations.
Pay Attention to Quotes from the poem.
According to the topic being demonstrated, you can quote a few lines of poetry or several. Of course, depending on how many lines you’re quoting in MLA format, your formatting will differ.
Short Poem Quotes in MLA
Follow these basic recommendations if you’re using two or three lines from a poem.
Use quotations to begin and end the poetry.
For line breaks, use a slash (/).
For stanza breaks, use a double slash (/).
Short Poem Quote Example
“I chose the lesser-travelled path, and it has made all the difference.” (Lines 19-20 in Frost)
Long Poem Quotes
Different standards apply for citing a poem, whether you use a whole stanza or even a block of poetry in your MLA work. Look at these pointers for quoting four or more lines of poetry. A block quotation is what it’s called.
There were no quotes supplied. Ignore the quotations when quoting a long block of poetry.
Don’t forget to include the colon. A colon appears in your first line.
The importance of indentation cannot be overstated. Indent the poem a half-inch to make it stand out and look like a block.
Before the citation, add a period.
Lines and Numbers for Citing a Poem in MLA
Now that you’ve mastered poem quotation, it’s time to put the finishing touches on it. Include the author’s last name and the lines you used in parenthesis to finish a poem quote (e.g., Frost lines 1-5). This follows the time. Long poetic essay example:
I’ll tell you this with a sigh.
Somewhere, aeons and aeons ago:
In the woods, two paths divided, and I—
I chose the less travelled path.
And it’s made a world of difference. (Frost 16-20)
How to quote lyrics in an essay?
MLA does not need you to manually count lines if you have a poem with no lines available. Alternatively, you can refer to the poem’s page numbers.
“Then the window closes in on your mind.” Men walk there, just beyond the sway of curtains.” (Angelou 126)
How to quote a poem in an essay?
Depending on the genre of the poem there are a few different methods to include the poem’s title in the text.
You place the title in quotation marks for conventional poetry (e.g., “The Road Not Taken”).
If your poem is longer than a novel, such as an epic poem, things change. Italicize or underline the title in this situation (e.g., Divine Comedy)
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