One Day I Wrote Her Name Upon the Strand Edmund Spenser
ONE day I wrote her name upon the strand, But came the waves and washèd it away: Again I wrote it with a second hand, But came the tide and made my pains his prey. Vain man (said she) that dost in vain assay 5 A mortal thing so to immortalise; For I myself shall like to this decay, And eke my name be wipèd out likewise. Not so (quod I); let baser things devise To die in dust, but you shall live by fame; 10 My verse your virtues rare shall eternise, And in the heavens write your glorious name: Where, when as Death shall all the world subdue, Our love shall live, and later life renew.
Spenserian Sonnets have an abab, bcbc, cdcd, ee rhyme scheme, yet unlike the Petrarchan Sonnets, the first octet isn't answered by the latter sestet. It is seen as three quatrains connected by the rhyme scheme with the couplet at the end. It has the terza rima rhyme scheme as I mentioned in earlier poems.
It is very obvious that I wrote your name in the sand, but the waves washed it away poem was written based on this poem.
Euphony is used in the first quatrain to portray the delicate nature of his love for this lady. It also indicates the sorrow he may feel when the name is washed away by the waves. In the second quatrain, the use of the opposite cacophony magnifies the anger of the woman. The use of hard consonants makes the second quatrain hard to flow easily.
In the third quatrain, caesura is used to show the pondering of the man. He stops and thinks of what to say to his lady to please her. The pauses indicate almost a fear of losing her. He stops and thinks about what he is going to say before he actually says it. This cautious way of saying things is carried into the couplet when caesura is used again. The caesura, or maybe emjambment is used even more in the couplet to give more viscosity of his feelings. Enjambment is the breaking of a syntactical unit. Instead of being very easy to read, Spenser uses the Caesura to put more emphasis on the true meaning of his poem.
The rhyme scheme in the poem connects the forward action of his movements. When he moves on from the euphony and almost enchanted world in the first quatrain to the harsh reality of the second quatrain, the rhyme scheme (abab bcbc) intertwines the two worlds and almost keeps the presence of romanticism alive. This is likewise of the third quatrain and the couplet.
Also, trope could be accomodated with this poem by saying that the waves represent affairs or some infidelity in his life. It would make sense to allude that.
Try to see the contrast in the way the speaker reads the quatrains.
I sit in the top of the wood, my eyes closed. Inaction, no falsifying dream Between my hooked head and hooked feet: Or in sleep rehearse perfect kills and eat.
The convenience of the high trees! The air's buoyancy and the sun's ray Are of advantage to me; And the earth's face upward for my inspection.
My feet are locked upon the rough bark. It took the whole of Creation To produce my foot, my each feather: Now I hold Creation in my foot
Or fly up, and revolve it all slowly - I kill where I please because it is all mine. There is no sophistry in my body: My manners are tearing off heads -
The allotment of death. For the one path of my flight is direct Through the bones of the living. No arguments assert my right:
The sun is behind me. Nothing has changed since I began. My eye has permitted no change. I am going to keep things like this.
The use of conceitin the poem directly corrolates the Hawk to people with power. Instead of just talking about the people, Hughes uses the hawk to characterize what these people do, and the wickedness of their minds.
"Nothing has changed since I began. My eye has permitted no change."
These two lines show the inability to change when there is someone with so much power. They want to "keep things like this" because it has made them successful, and their selfish ways will keep the whole body at a stand still.
"I sit in the top of the wood, my eyes closed" describes the kings who refused to listen to their subjects, the people who ruled the land, but were ruled by an ignorant bigot.
Because of this tense feeling and condescending tone, it is easy to see that cacophony was used to create an image of irritation and unwanted force. Hughes uses cacophony perfectly in his poem to indicate what he truly feels about the subject.
If I interpreted this poem correctly, Hughes is using the litote of wanting the power of a hawk to explain the cruelty of the people in power. The hawk is above every other bird, and it is the king of the air, and the metonymy of the hawk is used to portray the high power of the royalty. He never directly mentions these people, but it is clear that he sees them as ignorant. they " kill where [they] please because it is all [theirs]".
These kids are acting out what is happening. It is weird and not very accurate, but it's the best I could find.