What Are Some Examples of Diction in Literature?

Edgar Allan Poe's sombre diction in "The Raven" and Walt Whitman's hopeful words in "A Glimpse" are two opposite examples of diction in literature. "Diction" refers to the words the writer chooses to use to express his thoughts.

"Once upon a midnight dreary," wrote Poe, as the beginning of his cult poem. Even if they were to appear without any context, the words "midnight" and "dreary" animate dark and obscure feelings in the reader's mind. In stark comparison, Whitman wrote his work of art in cheerful words. "There we two, content, happy in being together" form the beginning of the final sentence of his poem. The words "content," "happy" and "together" carry positive connotations and may even put the reader in a gay mood.