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Life is Fine - by Langstone Hughes

Poem analysis of the famous poem by Langstone Hughes

Lorenzo Lucchese

on 5 March 2013

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Transcript of Life is Fine - by Langstone Hughes

We hope you have completely understood the meaning of this fantastic poem!!! The Poet The Poem I went down to the river,
I set down on the bank.
I tried to think but couldn't,
So I jumped in and sank.

I came up once and hollered!
I came up twice and cried!
If that water hadn't a-been so cold
I might've sunk and died.

But it was Cold in that water! It was cold!

I took the elevator
Sixteen floors above the ground.
I thought about my baby
And thought I would jump down.

I stood there and I hollered!
I stood there and I cried!
If it hadn't a-been so high
I might've jumped and died.

But it was High up there! It was high!

So since I'm still here livin',
I guess I will live on.
I could've died for love--
But for livin' I was born

Though you may hear me holler,
And you may see me cry--
I'll be dogged, sweet baby,
If you gonna see me die.

Life is fine! Fine as wine! Life is fine! Langston Hughes is known as a significant poet of the Harlem Renaissance- “an African American artistic movement in the 1920s that celebrated black life and culture”. Hughes connects with the audience through his sophistication towards life’s matters in which issues revolving around the African American community are frequently addressed.
In his poem “Life is fine”, Hughes particularly brings out the significance of life which is often reinforced by the obstacles that people encounter in their living journeys. The poem is considered Hughes’s most successful piece of work as it concentrates on the hardships of not only the African American community, but all humanity. The Meaning of the Poem The Poem talks about a man that wants to suicide because he doesn't feel like he can handle his live but nature or god him self doesn't want him to die so he gives him extra chances like when he tries to die in the water he can't because the water is too cold and therefore he comes back to the surface.
In the poem the poet uses lots of rhymes which make the poem much more like something in prose because it looks like a running film.It creates lots of images in your head thanks to the very good use of imagery that the poet has used.
In this poem the man tries to suicide himself twice: the first time he tries to drown himself but doesn't manage because the water is too cold and makes him jump out, the second time he is about to through himself from the top of a skyscraper but because it is too high he doesn't through himself even because he thinks about his baby. Repetition, Metaphor and Rhyme Scheme Repetition is used to add emphasis to what he would do for love. In stanza two and five Langston Hughes says that the man either (in stanza 5) stood up or (in stanza 2) came up and hollered and then cried. Those lines are the same except for the two words 'stood' and 'came'. By reading these lines we really understood what he must have been feeling and what he went through without having someone to love and when he was left by his wife from which he had a child.
The whole poem, in my opinion, is a metaphor: it shows what the poet felt inside, the things that hewoukd have done if he woud have had more courage and a bit of madness. He wanted to show what he would have done for love. The metaphor "Life is fine! Fine as wine! Life is fine!" compares life to wine because it is something delicate and refined that needs to be tasted slowly and completely, you have to remember that you have only one. A very strong metaphor.
The rhyme scheme gives a very nice musicality to the poem that makes it more fluent to read. the second and last of each stanza rime, another factor that makea the poem fluent is the very good use of punctuation (!,.:;) and the structure of the poem's stanzas (4,4,1,4,4,1,4,4,1). Thanks a lot for listening Lorenzo and Alberto Life is Fine By Langstone Hughes
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