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Death and Dylan Thomas - Essay Example

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The author of the current essay "Death and Dylan Thomas" underlines that in the first stanza of the poem "A Refusal to Mourn the Death, by Fire, of a Child in London", the fourth and fifth line “Tells with silence the last light breaking / And the still hour” speaks of the moment of death…
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Death and Dylan Thomas
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Download file to see previous pages And what the fifth line of the poem calls the ‘still hour’ is the moment when all movement in life ceases to be. The second stanza has more religious imagery, making use of the words ‘Zion’ and ‘synagogue’. It also makes allusions of Biblical passages in a few lines. The image of ‘corn’ alludes to the parables. The phrase ‘ear of corn’ refers to the listening to these parables that preached these stories of inevitability (Rukhaya, “Poetry Analysis: A Refusal…”). The phrase ‘shadow of a sound’ pertains to the memory of one who has died. It is like remembering the voice of someone familiar in your mind, but that is just a memory unlike one being alive. The line that says ‘sow my salt of seed’ gives a metaphor on the futility of rebirth from death, since planting salt on soil reaps nothing at all and is left lifeless. The poet parodies the Valley of the Shadow of Death by the phrase ‘valley of sackcloth’ deteriorating the action of mourning as a ritual by itself that relegates the sacredness of the funeral and dead one in question (Rukhaya). The third stanza speaks of the child in the title, wherein the child represents the tragedy of death and is treated by the poet in a different sort of respect. When the author wrote, “I shall not murder” (PoemHunter.com), the term murder is actually his view of mourning. In respect to the author, we should see it on his perspective of the history that happened around him.  World War 2 happened during his time, and Great Britain was almost constantly bombed by Nazi Germany. Many innocent lives were lost among men, women, and children. “What was another unknown child's death to the city of London, 30,000 of whose citizens had perished by Nazi fire-bombing and over 1,350 V2 rocket attacks” (Lancashire, “Commentary by Ian Lancashire”)? For the poet, to mourn for the dead with all its rituals after such a horrific tragedy is murdering the memory of the dead. The death of a child is a symbol to honor the death of the innocent young by striving for change, not through rituals. And in the last stanza and last line of the poem, which tells that “After the first death, there is no other” (PoemHunter.com), the poet means the action of mourning is useless, for there is no further averting of the situation just because there is no death again (Rukhaya) because death is part of a cycle of life that we must learn to accept and respect. In relation to the natural, we must learn to give our respect to how the way nature changes around us. Today, people complain about pollution or express sadness towards the extinction or approaching extinction of a life form on this planet. But regardless of such notions, they would not do anything about it or show no respect to let nature go its own course. Many natural wonders and landscapes are either destroyed or damaged, and we view that as a tragedy; a tragedy that we are guilty and responsible for. We must learn to treat nature as a child, both in life and in death. In life, we cherish and celebrate its vitality. And when we set it on the cycle of death, we should learn to change our ways of destruction and strive for a positive change. On Dylan Thomas’ After the Funeral Out of all the poems that Dylan Thomas’ has written, After the Funeral is his only work that is created for an individual. ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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