Sunday, January 25, 2009

Whole Text: Seeker of Truth - E.E. Cummings

Seeker of Truth

seeker of truth

follow no path
all paths lead where

truth is here

External Structure and word choice are always very visible in E.E. Cummings' poems. I chose this poem just because E.E. Cummings' poems tell such a deep story in such few words. From the poem, the first two lines can be the path that is being mentioned from line two and it is compacted between the "truth". If the seeker of truth seeks the truth, then it will be with him/her at all times because the "truth is here". This structure is similar to a lot of his poems. He has no written rules and writes in free verse which allows him to expand his meanings furthermore than any set stanza.
As I have noticed before though, E.E. Cummings manipulates his first line of the poem to create the last line of the poem. He always encloses his poems between the first and last lines. That is unique, and it can be seen clearly in his poetry. Also, his word choice is key to the explanation of his poems. He emphasizes a few important words in all his poems. In this poem, it is "path" and "truth" and without knowing what these mean, the poem means absolutely nothing. The "seeker of truth" and the "truth is here" are what we, as mere mortals believe, and it is within the middle lines that we learn how to live and follow this way to the truth.

Whole Text: The Learned - Eden Phillpots

Phillpotts uses similes, diction, and mood to explain her poem. The airy, childish mood of the poem gives a sense of calmness and intense energy at the same time. The contradiction to this is the "grey beards wag, the bald heads nod". This indicates the age of the crowd, which is not youthful at all.
Also, the use of "electrons, gases, god" shows the intelligence and maturity of the group that gathers "thick as bees". This, in no aspect symbolizes the mood of the poem. The diction indicates the simplistic part of the poem, and the internal part of the poem explains the sophistication of everything. It is the best of both worlds, I believe. Phillpotts achieves this youthful maturity within her poem. There is a great effect by using yin and yang. The youthfulness of her diction clashed with the non-youthful nature of the subjects tears down the barriers between two different generations.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

External Form: [l(a] - E.E. Cummings

this poem really caught my eye, especially because I had no idea what the words were when I first read it. After reading it over, I realized that it says, "a leaf falls" and then "loneliness". This poem really caught my attention because of the form. It is a very horizontally challenged poem, meaning that it can't be read line to line. The direction is always down, which emphasizes the leaf falling from the tree. Then, after being read in the parentheses, Cummings mentions "loneliness".

The use of a few words in each line signifies the loneliness. The line after the two little l's, there is only one letter left, and after that, the word one. To further build on that, it shows that as the leaf is getting further and further from the tree, the loneliness within it, is growing ever more real. The second to last line shows l, which defines loneliness. It seems as though each line illuminates the loneliness of the leaf.

These two terms are parallel to each other. A leaf falling from a tree can be seen as a child almost being excluded from a group, or falling behind. He/she can't seem to hold onto the branch, the group, any longer, and he/she just gives up. As we all know, loneliness is being in solitary isolation, and isn't a leaf falling off of a tree symbolizing just that? That is why, after I read it again, I realized that the leaf falling from the tree is incorporated into loneliness. This falling off, and falling to the ground, is just a part of loneliness that we all have to face sometimes.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


I left my book at a friend's so I have to go get it tomorrow. I'll update before 4 tomorrow afternoon. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

External Form (sonnets) 2: Autumnal Sonnet - William Allingham

Autumnal Sonnet by William Allingham

Now Autumn's fire burns slowly along the woods, a
And day by day the dead leaves fall and melt, b
And night by night the monitory blast c
Wails in the key-hold, telling how it pass'd c
O'er empty fields, or upland solitudes, a
Or grim wide wave; and now the power is felt b
Of melancholy, tenderer in its moods a
Than any joy indulgent summer dealt. b
Dear friends, together in the glimmering eve, d
Pensive and glad, with tones that recognise e
The soft invisible dew in each one's eyes, f
It may be, somewhat thus we shall have leave d
To walk with memory,--when distant lies f
Poor Earth, where we were wont to live and grieve. d

This sonnet is a Petrarchan Sonnet. The first eight lines talk about the autumn and how it has come like a rushing wind, leaving the remnants of summer behind. Then in the final six lines, Allingham talks about how the past is just a faint memory. It is a darker scene than the first eight lines because he is talking about the "poor earth" and where the people will "live and grieve". This second part talks about the horrors that have yet to face them. The summer is the light and the goodness of everything, and the autumn is the apocolypse as it sounds. The rhyme scheme isn't very consistent in the beginning, but it has an almost a-b-a-b, etc. form afterwords.

Allingham uses the Petrarchan Sonnet because it is easier to tell the contrast of two different seasons in two parts, rather than four parts.

External Form (sonnets) 1: Joy Sonnet in a Random Universe - Helen Chasin

In this poem, everything seems out of order. Chasin, though, by useing la and other random terms, has kept control of her poem. She doesn't particularly rhyme, but she uses her scheme to control her poem. I believe that she is writing a sonnet, or maybe not. First off, she is using the standard fourteen lines. Besides that, she is not staying with the iambic pentameter or the rhyme scheme. I want to say this is a new form of sonnet, but it does not follow the guidelines of a sonnet. I feel like "Joy Sonnet in a Random Universe" means a sonnet based on the fact that she is happy. Since she is in this "random universe", the regular guidelines don't apply. I feel like she is going back to the basics, which shows that a sonnet has fourteen lines. That is all that matters. Since rhyme schemes are used to show control, other poets may say she had no control of her writing, but that is on the contrary. She had a strong control, and it is seen in her square-shaped sonnet.

This video shows how few people really understand the poem.