Featured Post


I am posting this as a benchmark, not because I think I'm playing very well yet.  The idea would be post a video every month for a ye...

Monday, October 3, 2016

Analysis #1

Analysis of a Poem

Poets have often written about matter of deep concern to them. In this analysis I will look at both theme and style, analyzing this poem by a famous poet. First I will look at some thematic aspects and then do a formal analysis. The poem has no title so I will use the first line as though it were a title. As we discussed in class, poetry is difficult and analysis is necessary. So here goes.

As I mentioned before, I will start with some themes, but first I should mention that the poet was born in X in 19XX and is considered very important and famous. We talked about him in class one day.

I noticed the word "Spain" right off the bat so I am guessing that the main theme is Spain itself. By using this word the poet is signaling his love of country. The word "Spanish" also appears.

I don't see any traditional rhyme here. There are 14 lines so possibly it is a sonnet, though sonnets usually rhyme. The second time I counted there were 15 so maybe this is a matter for further investigation. According to the internet the sonnet is important as a kind of story.

The first stanza has four lines. The second stanza has four lines as well. The third stanza has six lines. As mentioned above, there is no rhyme.

There are metaphors. The function of the metaphors is to emphasize the central theme, in this case, as I've mentioned before, the theme of Spain. The word "con," meaning "with" is repeated four times, so possibly the poet want to be "with" his homeland in some fashion.

In conclusion, this poem by a famous poet is moving and beautiful, using metaphors to talk about a central theme in a unique way.


Leslie B. said...

Ooh sylistics.

Question. What is the theory of poetry presupposed by Benjamin in the task of the translator and if this theory is not universally applicable how much does that limit the reach of the essay?

Jonathan said...

This seems to be what my graduate students think I want.

Poetry is sacred text; not universally applicable because there are other poetics, so that limits the possible scope to those poetics that view poetry as sacred text.

I could go on for longer but I have to return to dreadful graduate essays.

Andrew Shields said...

I'm happy to say that all of my undergraduates right now are better than that! :-)

Leslie B. said...

I am deeply influenced by stylistics and by the idea that you should treat text as sacred, I am realizing.

Leslie B. said...

All right. This post, precisely, is why they should not shy away from teaching poetry as "too difficult" in the first 4 years. There are a few more problems, such as having learned you are to say something honorific about the author and so on. But seriously, this is pretty dreadful, and is about like a bad one in the mid level intro to lit. Bad. I am sorry. I feel for you. I am glad to discover I am not alone. I always think I must be an awful teacher when I get this kind of paper. There is no way to scaffold an essay like this into being good, either -- in fact, I think part of the problem is that they had their undergraduate essays too heavily scaffolded.