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Poetry analysis - Alfred Tennyson - Essay Example

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Poetry Analysis Alfred Tennyson is an English poet who was born on 1809 in Sommersby England. He was born during the beginning of the French Revolution and at the last part of the Napoleonic Wars. Alfred demonstrated a love for poetry at an early age…
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Download file to see previous pages Not only did he later write verses on dramatic fiction, but also on the current political issues. For instance, his poem, The Change of the Light Brigade, gives a description of the catastrophic battle of the Crimean War while at the same time praising the bravery of British soldiers involved (Tennyson, 2000: 302). The Change of the Light Brigade is a poem that consists of six stanzas, which vary in length from between six and twelve lines. Like all other poets Alfred Tennyson employs prosodic features, repetition, different sound patterns, and various figures of speech in his attempt to communicate the meaning. For instance, use of figurative language and imagery creates an exhilaration tone, while at the same time honoring the admirable qualities of the Light Brigade. Critics have argued that Tennyson is not only a literary poet, but also a poet of the people, plumbing into the depths of his giving voice to the consciousness of the nation (Tennyson, 2000: 302). Throughout most of his poems, Tennyson shows a deep commitment to the reformation of the society and an interest in its development. The poem narrates the story of a brigade made up of 600 soldiers, who for half a league have rode on horseback to the valley of death. This was under a command to take charge of some enemy forces that had seized them for some time. Even though all the soldiers were convinced that the commander had made a mistake, not one of them was distressed in charging forward. They rode courageously towards the valley of death. At the end of the war, only a few soldiers made it back. The world was surprised at the courage of the soldiers. Each line in the poem is in dimeter. This means that there are two stressed syllables in each line. In addition to this, each stressed syllable is comes before two unstressed syllables. This makes the rhythm of the poem dactylic. Employing a falling rhythm in the poem is appropriate for the demoralizing fall of the British brigade. This is one of the features the poet uses in communicating the message. The rhyme scheme, on the other hand, varies from a stanza to the next. He employs the same rhyme and in some occasions, a similar final word for most consecutive lines. Moreover, the poem employs anaphora. This is the repetition of the same word at the start of a variety of consecutive lines. This method has been employed to create a sense of remorseless assault. For instance, the repetition of the word cannon implies the manner in which the soldiers meet flying shells at all turns (Tennyson, 2004: 27). Repetition has been employed immensely throughout the poem for the sole purpose of creating emphasis. For instance, the repetition of the phrase half a league in the first and the second lines of the first stanza emphasize the long distance that the soldiers had to travel. Tennyson employs the third person point of view in making the descriptions within the poem. He most probably employs the male gender because on the 19th century gender biases, which held that women should not appear on battlefields. Strength and determination are the central themes of the entire poem. The soldiers face a lot of danger but show admirable qualities, which are honored. In communicating this message, Tonnyson employs personification, metaphors, and imagery. As far as imagery in the poem is concerned, critics have argued that more is meant by the author than just what is met by the eye. For instance, the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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