Poetry Compare or Contrast Essay
Poetry Compare or Contrast Essay
The Spring and the Fall by Edna St. Vincent Millay uses symbolize using familiar symbols such as the fresh and moist air of spring as she talks of the beginning of love in a relationship and the ensuing heartbreak at the end of a union between two people. On the other hand, Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden uses a similar style of symbolism as he talks about the tragic end of love and life and the resulting grief and sadness. The two poems are alike as they provide an audience with a view of the associated pain of losing a loved one. The two poems, The Spring and the Fall by Edna St. Vincent Millay and Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden use symbolism to communicate on themes of grief and sadness because of loss, which can be seen in the form of death and heartbreak after the end of a romantic relationship. The poems are different from one another in that one talks of a romantic relationship whereas the other talks of a mysterious man who is important to the author.
The Spring and the Fall by Millay provides an account of two themes namely finding love in a new romantic relationship and the loss of the same, which resembles the two seasons, spring, and fall. The author uses symbolism as she seeks to communicate to the audience on the contrasting emotions experienced by individuals when they fall in and out of love. Symbolism of spring and fall can be seen as one of the primary themes of this poem. Spring is a symbol of birth, love, and renewal. Coincidentally the couple falls in love during the period of spring with the author highlighting an incident whereby the man breaks off the branch of a peach tree as it blossoms, all with an aim of making his companion happy. As time progresses, their love fades during the month of fall and the author notes that despite a similar walking routine hand in hand, “He laughed at all I dared to praise, And broke my heart, in little ways.” This illustrates the loss of romance and emergence of mockery as their relationship deteriorates. Fall is marked by death of plants in preparedness for the incoming season of winter. Despite the woman’s efforts to find small issues of beauty to praise, he fails to acknowledge her efforts in the relationship and his laughter hurts her. She notes in the final stanza that she is not hurt by the loss of love, but rather the little ways and things that led to its loss as noted by the lines, “Tis not love’s going hurt my days. But that it went in little ways” (Millay 19).
Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden begins with the author hoping for everything around him to maintain silence. He seemingly seeks for tranquility and peace to ponder over his thoughts of loss and complains of death and its associated pain. It is important to note that the author also seeks the involvement of the public in acknowledging the significance of the man’s death. It can be noted that the author uses hyperbolism hoping that things will stop and notice the death of the unknown man. The author continues with his pleas as he asks airplanes to write in the sky about the man’s death. He also wants pigeons and police officers to note of the man’s death. The author also uses other forms of symbolism such as the stars, the moon, and nature to leave him in piece given that he is in pain after losing someone dear to him. This is emphasized by the stanza
“He was my North, my South, my East, and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.” (Auden and Mendelson 43)
The author seemingly tries to ask people, animals and the world around him to stop and acknowledge the importance of this man to society and more so to him. This illustrates that profoundness and magnitude of love held by the author for this mystery man in the Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden. The lines, “My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song; I thought that love would last forever” illustrate a profound feeling of emotional attachment and love held by the author for this mystery individual. He had hoped that they would forever be around one another. It is also evident that the two poems are different from one another despite sharing themes of sadness, grief, and pain. The Spring and the Fall by Edna St. Vincent Millay, as the author noted, illustrates a phase of life in any romantic relationship whereby spring is a depiction of newfound love and fall is death of the relationship. The author in The Spring and the Fall is not saddened by losing a loved as compared to Funeral Blues. Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden has its focus on the death and associated pain of the author after losing a mysterious individual in his life.
The two poems, The Spring and the Fall by Edna St. Vincent Millay and Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden, focus on the loss of a dear one and the emotional distress associated with losing a loved one. The two poems use symbolism to communicate the themes of grief and sadness because of the loss, which can be seen in the form of death and heartbreak after the end of a romantic relationship. Loss is seen in the form of death or heartbreak and separation in romantic relationships. In addition, they both provide an illustration of the emotional turmoil endured by individuals oblivious to the rest of the world and the elements around them. The two individuals, despite the magnitudes of their losses, are able to overcome their grief and continue with their lives.
Auden, W H, and Edward Mendelson. Selected Poems. New York: Vintage International, 2007. Print.
Millay, E. S. V. Collected poems. New York: Harper, 1956. Print.
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