How to Write an Elegy Poem: Step by step writing guide

An elegy poem is a poem that is written to mourn a deceased person. This kind of writing has its roots in classical Greek. It is good to note that an elegy should not be confused with eulogy or epitaph. Eulogy is normally quite detailed with information of life history of the deceased and it is written in a formal manner. An epitaph is quite brief and it usually contains a short message that can be inscribed on a tombstone. Students who really know how to write an elegy poem understand that it must include three elements. These are namely: lament/ grief, praise/exalt and consolation/solace.

  • The first stage of writing an elegy poem is lamenting. At this stage you are supposed to express sorrow of having been left by the deceased. A good way to do this is to show how you have been affected by the loss. You should be sure to mention the key things that you had hoped to achieve with the deceased if the death had not come knocking too soon. A good elegy poem should have a clear lamentation.
  • Praise is the second stage that you ought to focus on when writing an elegy poem. In order to do so you ought to highlight the most important things that the deceased will be remembered for. You are supposed to briefly mention his/her good deeds and how they had a positive impact in this world. If the deceased was a close friend then you should be sure to mention the different ways in which he/she helped you and the key thinks that he taught you. Remember that the best way to write an elegy poem is to make sure that you make the audience emotional. One of the best ways of doing so is praising the deceased and making the audience admire the life that he/she had lived.
  • Our professional elegy poem writers suggest that the last stage of writing this type of a poem is consolation or solace. At this stage you are supposed to offer comfort to the mourners. A good way to do that is for example to remind them that human life is ephemeral and that we shall all die one day. If you are finding it difficult to work on this type of writing on your own then we strongly advise that you order for elegy poem writing help. We assure you that you shall be impressed by our writing assistance.

There are many famous examples of elegy poems throughout history. Some notable examples include:

“Lycidas” by John Milton, written in 1637 to commemorate the death of a friend, Edward King, who drowned at sea. The poem is written in pastoral style and reflects on the transience of life and the consolations of religion.

“When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloomed” by Walt Whitman, written in 1865 to commemorate the death of President Abraham Lincoln. The poem is written in free verse and uses imagery from nature to express the sense of loss and mourning that the nation felt after Lincoln’s death.

“In Memoriam A.H.H.” by Alfred Lord Tennyson, written between 1833 and 1850 to commemorate the death of a close friend. The poem is written in a formal rhyme scheme and reflects on the nature of grief, the passage of time, and the consolations of religion.

“To His Coy Mistress” by Andrew Marvell, written in 1681, is not an elegy per se, but it offers a contemplation on time and mortality. The poem reflects on the brevity of life and encourages the speaker’s beloved to seize the moment and enjoy life while they can.

“An Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” by Thomas Gray, written in 1751, reflects on the lives of the common people buried in a rural churchyard, and on the transience of all human life. The poem uses imagery of the natural world to convey the sense of loss and sadness that the poet feels.

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