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The Season of Phantasmal Peace by Derek Walcott

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by

Shae White

on 15 April 2016

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Transcript of The Season of Phantasmal Peace by Derek Walcott

Imagery
"the shadows of long pines down trackless slopes,
the shadows of glass-faced towers down evening streets,
the shadow of a frail plant on a city sill --"
The Season of Phantasmal Peace by Derek Walcott
Diction
The diction for the poem is fairly modern, aside from "for such as our earth is now." The poem is describing the peace so it seems very conversational and less formal.
Structure
The poem is broken up into two stanzas. The first stanza is to tell us of the birds and how they're being naive. The second gives us the reality of the situation.
Literary Devices
Parallelism - "the shadows of long pines down trackless slopes,
the shadows of glass-faced towers down evening streets,
the shadow of a frail plant on a city sill --"
Theme
I believe The Season of Phantasmal Peace is about the innocence of mutual harmony. I thought of it as the time between the two World Wars. The nations were, or pretended to be naive to the underlying problems.
" ....like the pause
between dusk and darkness, between fury and peace,
but for such as our earth is now, it lasted long."
"Then all the nations of birds lifted together the huge net of the shadows of this earth.."
"there was no longer dusk, or season, decline, or weather,
only this passage of phantasmal light
that not the narrowest shadow dared to sever."
"what the ospreys trailed behind them in silvery ropes
that flashed in the icy sunlight;"
"bearing the net higher, covering this world
like the vines of an orchard,"
"it was the light
that you will see at evening on the side of a hill
in yellow October,
Analogy - "they could not hear
battalions of starlings waging peaceful cries,
bearing the net higher, covering this world
like the vines of an orchard, or a mother drawing
trembling gauze over the trembling eyes
of a child fluttering to sleep."
Metaphor - "covering this world
like the vines of an orchard."
Musical/Rhythmic Elements
In this poem, there are a lot of harsh d's and t's. It makes the poem seem eerie except when it's describing things like "phantasmal light." Those sound lighter and more "mystical." In the first stanza, there seems to be a bit of a rhythmic pattern due to the use of commas.
Full transcript