Reading Article 20

TOEFL / IELT Reading Comprehension Passage 20 - Poetry

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Origins Of Written Literature
Homer Odyssey Troy
Answer the questions according to the reading passage.


People seldom feel neutral about poetry. Those who love it sometimes give the impression that it is an adequate substitute for food, shelter, and love. But it isn't. Those who dislike poetry on principle sometimes claim, on the other hand, that poetry is only words and good for nothing. That's not true either. When words represent and recreate genuine human feelings, as they often do in poetry, they can be very important. Poems provide, in fact, a language for feeling, and one of poetry's most insistent merits involves its attempt to express the inexpressible. One of the joys of experiencing poetry occurs when we read a poem and want to say, "yes, that is just what it is like; I know exactly what that line means but I have never been able to express it so well." Poetry can be the voice of our feelings even when our minds are speechless with grief or joy.

1. One can understand from the passage that people ----.

A) seldom feel that poetry is an equivalent for life itself
B) rarely take a biased opinion about poetry
C) generally think that poetry expresses what might otherwise seem
D) never differ in their opinions about a poem
E) generally think of poetry as extremely important or totally useless

2. One point made by the author in the passage is that poetry ----.

A) tends to make the reader disappointed
B) is an adequate substitute for food, shelter, and love
C) is only words and good for nothing
D) often captures real human feelings
E) is impossible to be defined

3. The author points out in the reading that ----.

A) poetry is not closely concerned with feelings
B) poems are primarily about how people think rather than how people feel
C) poetry can't be the expression of one's deepest feelings
D) few people think that poetry is neutral
E) poetry tries to express what people feel but find it hard to describe

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