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Caged Bird Poetry Analysis

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by

Irene Chia

on 24 March 2014

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Transcript of Caged Bird Poetry Analysis

Nationality:
African American
Birth:
April 4, 1928
Born In
: St.Louis Missouri
Relationships:
Divorced, then Married
Awards:
3 Grammy Awards, 1 Tony Award, and more
Maya Angelou
(Marguerite Annie Johnson)
Caged Bird Poetry Analysis
Paraphrase
1. The free bird flies
by the wind
and floats down
until the wind dies.
The bird's wings touch
the sun
and the sky.
Connotation
Alliteration, Rhyme, Meter:
There is none. This shows that Maya Angelou is more focused on the idea than the sounds and structure of the poem
Attitude
She wants people to
see and hear
the
difference between the free bird and caged bird
in this poem.
Her
tone
in the 4th Stanza is
frustrated
due to the extremity of the difference between the free bird and caged bird.
Maya Angelou is expressing the hope one might still have when problems occur by repeating the verse about the caged bird still singing.
In the poem the author, herself, is the caged bird and
wishes to be free.
Shifts
The poem begins with the positive, joyful, free bird and shifts to the viewpoint of a caged bird. The next stanza describes the song of the caged bird. The greatest shift would be from the 3rd to the 4th stanza. In the 4th stanza the behavior and lives of both birds and compared in very vivid ways so that each one is separated completely. Finally, it shifts back to the viewpoint of the Caged bird and it's song of hope, conveying what Maya Angelou was also feeling like at the time.
Theme
This poem speaks about the hope that people have by the song of the caged bird. The readers also learn how Maya Angelou might have felt (like a bird in a cage) from the secret of a rape she kept. Lastly, the writer wants us to take home the idea that people with similar experiences as her may feel the same way; like a caged bird, who is not free, but has hope within them.
Title-
"Caged Bird"
Before
Something that has to do with birds
Animals cruelty
You are trapped
This might be a metaphor for someone?
Parents become divorced at age of 3
lives with her mother in St. Louis.
She is raped by her mother's boyfriend, Mr. Freeman- becomes her inspiration for her first autobiography,
I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
. This was extremely difficult for her to cope with.
She studied art, music, and drama in high school.
2. A bird that walks around
in a cage
cannot see through the bars.
The wings are clipped.
The feet are tied.
So he can only sing.
3. Birds in a cage sing
Worriedly
for the things they don't know
but still want
Things hear the melody
far away
because the bird
sings to be free.
4. A free bird thinks about the wind
and the breeze in the trees,
the meal in the ground.
and he call the sky his.
Birds in a cage have to stand on the thing that keeps his dreams away.
The wings are clipped.
The feet are tied.
So he can only sing.
5. Stanza two repeat
A free bird leaps
on the back of the wind
and floats downstream
till the current ends
and dips his wing
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his wings are clipped and
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing

The caged bird sings
with a fearfull trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom
The free bird thinks of another breeze
and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn bright lawn
and he names the sky his own
But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.
After
Caged stands for restrictions
Hope from people with difficulties or barriers
The Caged Bird is Maya Angelou
Personification:
Used to emphasize the freedom of the free bird and restriction of the caged bird
"the trade winds soft through the
sighing trees
" line 24
"his
shadow shouts
on a nightmare scream" line 28
Symbolism
: The birds represent people in the actual world.
Free Bird: The free and happy people
Caged Bird: people who are restricted by something, or a barrier
Bars of a Cage: Things that keep people from doing what they wish (Ex: Secrets, Dicrimination)
Repetition:
She repeats half of two verses to create one verse about the Caged bird singing in it's cage for freedom. (Stanza 2+3=5) It stresses the hope that someone may get from being in a difficult situation.
The song of the bird stands for hope.
Chia, Irene
Period 1
March/2014
Full transcript