Sunday, November 30, 2008

Speaker 2: We Real Cool - Gwendolyn Brooks

I only read this poem because I thought the title was humorous. The speaker of the poem is a rebel that plays hookey. He/she is talking about all the rebellious things they do on the streets. They "thin gin" and "sing sin" which shows that these people are real anarchists. The speaker of this poem portrays one of those people I see in Grease. It seems like the speaker roams the streets snapping his/her fingers and whistling horrible melodies.

Also, this person "left school" and "lurks late" so I assume that they have had a rough past. When a poem is based on the speaker, there are a lot of things I have to assume I feel. I can get the feeling of the poem. This poem is showing the power and superiority the speaker has because he/she breaks all the rules. "We" refers to all those people who waste their lives I feel. Gwendolyn uses this speaker to show how she feels. Towards the end of the poem, this superiority comes to an end with "we die soon". It shows what Brooks really thinks about this lifestyle. She uses the opposite to portray her feelings.

Speaker 1: The Changeling - Judit Ortiz Cofer

This poem leaves a very strong message to me. The speaker's point of view makes it very intriguing. First off, this would be completely different if it were told by a little caucasian girl. The speaker being of probably Cuban descent makes this story what it is. The speaker is this little girl that can only get her father's attention by pretending to be a boy. She changed herself to impress her father. She went into her "brother's closet" and changed into his "dungarees". This action hinted that her father gave her brother attention, and the only way she could win his attention was if she was like her brother. She would tell her father of the "tales of battles and brotherhood" which she would no nothing about because she is a young girl. She would have to be this changeling that tried to win approval.

Her mother didn't approve of this because she, from what the speaker hints, wants her to be "invisible". The mother doesn't want her daughter to be seen by anyone and the only way to do that is to make her be a young girl. This scene defines what kind of culture this little girl is in. It is when women were not equal to men, and they were to just be invisible and forgotten.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Tone 2: Elena - Pat Mora

Interview of Patricia Mora :

This poem really caught my attention. It is about foreigners learning English, and I feel bad for the mother and my mother because I do the same to my mother as this woman's kids do to her. Her tones are depression, frustration, and self degradation. The mother says shes "embarrassed at mispronouncing words" and how she feels "dumb" and "alone". I feel as thought I can sympathize with her because sometimes I also mispronounce words and I have seen these things happen so close to me. When people sometimes make fun of my mother's accent, I attack them verbally. I try not to, but this poem explains how I feel sometimes.

The mother is "embarrassed at the laughter of [her] children, the grocer, [and] the mailman" which is just horrible. How could anyone be put through so much. The use of tone changes the whole meaning of the poem. Without the depressing, frustrating tone, and self degradation, the poem could just be humorous. This was the only poem where I saw a great contrast from having the specific tone that is used and the use of no specific tone because in this poem, it was easy for me to capture the tone at the beginning, and it just wouldn't be the same without it. It's very hard to explain how I feel and I am probably going in circles, but this poem has just caused me to have a revelation.

Tone 1: Mother of the Groom - Seamus Heaney

This is on page 851 of the Norton

The tone is a bit nostalgic in this poem and I sense the jealousy in the tone. The mother is talking about her son when he was younger and how she remembers how he was. In the first stanza, she reminisces the past when she was the only woman in his life. She had the "ring" with his boot, and her motherly love was the "soap" that surrounded him. Heaney mentions when the son broke away from the mother's soapy hold and connects it to the daughter in-law which shows the jealousy. This jealousy is also carried to the end when she is talking about the "soap [...] eas[ing] off", but the wedding ring his wife has lasting "forever". It shows the sorrow and jealousy of the mother because she compares it to the past when she was the only woman he had and there was no one in between mother and son. She wishes to return to that past it seems, because she wants the "soap" to not ease off of the groom.