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Poetry Analysis

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Karlee Hintsala

on 4 April 2013

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Transcript of Poetry Analysis

Spring and All Compare For Jane Meyers Figurative Language Analysis of Theme: Overall, "For Jane Meyers" by Louise Gluck's theme is the end of life. It depicts the sorrowful truth that life is not eternal on Earth and we all must admit that death, as our enemy, is most certain. Death is not a joyful subject and can leave us feeling depressed, but by accepting death is eminent we become passive to its reality. Occurring during the spring it emphasizes Gluck's advice and warning into this reality that life eventually comes to an end. Tone and the Significance of Tonal Changes: These two poems are very similar. When first reading them we discovered that they both held a depressing tone. They both discuss spring and our travels through life. Both poems give a sense that a milestone has been reached and overcome. Poetry Analysis Significance of Title: Form and its significance: As mentioned before, Gluck uses situational irony to portray just how depressing accepting death can be. It brings about a paradox in which the underlying message is that "we are going to die". This being during the spring it displays that life is not everlasting because we must [admit to our adversaries]. Gluck uses the phrase "perilous beauty" as spring being grave rather than enthusiastic. This paradox distinguishes the difficulty in accepting such truths. Spring and All
For Jane Meyers Identification and purpose of figurative language: Spring in general is most often thought of as happy but when William Carlos Williams did not portray the tone as this he was able to give incite to the darker nature behind life itself. At the beginning of the poem "Spring and All," the tone was depressed, despairing, gloomy, and somber. This was evident in the use of the phrases "mottled clouds driven from the northeast" and "dead, brown leaves under them/leafless vines." Both of these phrases imply a depressed tone towards the beginning of the poem. Allowing one to understand that the meaning behind the poem is not as happy as one may think.
However within the last stanza the tone changed to be more hopeful. This is apparent through the phrase "still the profound change/has come upon them...and begin to awaken" This then implies a change into a hopeful nature due to that they mentioned a "profound change" allowing one to notice that instead of being despairing and gloomy the tone has changed. Also by mentioning that one has begun to "awaken" the poem takes on a hopeful tone by adding this assumption that one is awakening into something better. Therefore allowing Williams to reiterate that life is not all bad, but instead has something to look forward too.
By including this change of tone Williams informed one that although life may be hard, there is something to look forward to and be hopeful about. Spring is a pretty important part of this poem. Eventually, it emerges as a kind of weird main character, taking on almost
human characteristics.
Lines 14-15: Our first glimpse of spring. When it shows up, it is described as being "sluggish and dazed." The poem goes on to mention that Spring is "lifeless...cold...uncertain." and has "stark dignity". These words usually apply to humans and demonstrate personification.

Williams was born in the late 1800's and lived through the progressive movement in the US where the country began to start on a new and exciting chapter.
Line 25:" The "profound change" of spring’s arrival is a metaphor for the changes that are sweeping over the whole world in the early 20th Century. World War I is over; people are producing new and exciting art and philosophy, and starting to see some new prosperity. Spring has always been a symbol of new beginnings, and this was Williams way of expressing his feelings about the time period. This poem's title gives insight into the purpose of "For Jane Meyers". The title begins the poem's purpose to give advice and a warning into the truth of reality. Significance of Speaker: This poem's narrator is omniscient and speaks in third person. The narrator also cares deeply for the person to who they are giving advice, further developing a theme of the truth of reality. Identification of Form The form used in "Spring and All" partially revolves around that it is wrote in free verse. Therefore there is no pattern in rhyme techniques, and is not wrote so it has a regular meter. In this way one can say the poem is always 'changing' much as both spring and life does. If Williams had placed some kind of rhyme scheme in place then that would be something that one could 'look forward too' much like life is changing and isn't something that can be expected. Identification and Purpose of Diction The specific use of words in "Spring and All" helps to even more signify the illusion of Spring and life. To start the poem Williams used what was probably the most important example of diction through the words "the contagious hospital." This example of diction creates the somber tone; being that you then have a gloomy view on the season of Spring. Hospitals are generally thought of as places that bad things happen, such as ailments and deaths. This example of diction is important due to the contrast of spring itself. In addition of to example Williams also used harsh words such as "purplish, forked, upstanding, twiggy" towards the beginning of the poem in order to embellish upon the journey and trials that one has faced. To contradict this towards the end of the poem Williams included words that were of the softer nature such as "clarity", "familiar wind", and "dazed" to illustrate the joys of life and the wonderful outlook on the results of the journey. Contrast These two poems are also very different. Upon first read, we had thought they were covering the same part of life. However, "spring and All" seems to cover beginning of life while "For Jane Meyers" covers the end of life. They both begin with a somber tone, but "spring and All" ends with a hopeful tone while "For Jane Meyers" ends with a passive tone. Explanation of Title The significance of Williams titling this poem "Spring and All" is connected with the word 'Spring' itself. The season of Spring illustrated heavily throughout the poem. Being that Spring is the starting point for life, by titling the poem "Spring and All" Williams highlights the beginning of life in everyone. Significance Of Speaker The Speaker in "Spring and All" is third person omniscient. This is important due to that without the speaker we wouldn't have learned of life itself, and therefore it wouldn't exist. Analysis of Theme Over all "Spring and All" by William Williams' theme is Spring. It is this that Williams used to depict all of life itself. Therefore it depicts life as a journey (as evident in the first stanza "By the road"), and the start of life which is axiomatic through the statement that "They enter the new world naked". This poem is written in free form, meaning no rhyming. If rhyming had been in place it would have given a more childish tone. Because it is not there, it can be interpreted that Gluck wanted the poem to be taken more seriously considering it refers to life.
The poem houses an enjambment, many short lines that continue on to next lines. This goes to symbolize how harsh life can be and further emphasizes a harsh tone.
The poem also includes a caesura, which is a pause in a line, in line 17 "It is spring /We are going to die/". This exemplifies Gluck's meaning in the ending of life and accepting its presence. Significance of tone and tonal changes: "For Jane Meyers" holds a somber tone throughout its entirety. With Gluck speaking of spring, this tone is very ironic. Spring is usually associated with sunshine, flowers, and other cheerful images. However, Gluck uses phrases such as "ditch, digging out, wearying, harping breezes, blade, adversary" which suggests that the end of life is not cheerful. It is ironic that this death coincides with spring because normally spring means life. This allows the reader to understand that the ending of life is quite depressing rather than uplifting.
However, after the caesura the tone changes to a more passive one. It is accepted that life is not eternal on Earth and death is most eminent. The tone does not become uplifting about death because it "expands to admits Its adversary" meaning they've accepted what will come, but they are not joyful about it.
Gluck includes this tonal change to emphasize to the reader that accepting death as a part of life is a very important step to take, but you don't need to jump for joy accepting this reality. Diction and purpose: The tone of "For Jane Meyers" is a somber one which can be heard through the words "ditch, dead, digging, crocuses, wearying, harping, honking, blade, plaque, expands, and adversary". These words are harsh and rough. In no way are they smooth and flowing as we would except spring to be. The words fulfill Gluck's purpose in describing an end of life scenario in a depressing tone. These words emphasize her way of giving a precise warning as to our final reality; death.
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