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Oklahoma Agriculture in the Classroom

Songs and Poems

Fiesta Melons

by Sylvia Plath

In Benidorm there are melons,
Whole donkey-carts full
Of innumerable melons,
Ovals and balls,
Bright green and thumpable
Laced over with stripes
Of turtle-dark green.
Choose an egg-shape, a world-shape,
Bowl one homeward to taste
In the whitehot noon:
Cream-smooth honeydews,
Pink-pulped whoppers,
Bump-rinded cantaloupes
With orange cores.
Each wedge wears a studding
Of blanched seeds or black seeds
To strew like confetti
Under the feet of
This market of melon-eating

Discussion and Activities
  1. Use online or library resources to find the location of "Benidorm."
  2. What do the details in the poem tell you about the place the poet is describing? How do you know it is probably not a modern scene in the US?
  3. What is familiar? What is unfamiliar?
  4. What kind of melon is "egg-shape?" What kind of melon is "world shape." Why does she suggest "bowling one homeward"?
  5. How are the seeds like confetti?
  6. How many kinds of melon can you identify from the descriptions? List them.
  7. List all the adjectives used to describe the melons.
  8. Find examples of personification in the poem.
  9. Find examples of metaphor, simile and alliteration.
  10. What is the mood of the poem? Find two words that help set the mood.
  11. Draw a picture of the scene she is describing.