Thesis paragraph: “The Little Black Boy”

Originial:
            In “The Little Black Boy” by William Blake, the speaker of the poem represents the naïve blindness to the realities of racism and hardships of the American society during this time period. One can argue that the poet attempts to force the readers to face the fact that Christianity was used to justify the idea of slavery and oppression towards a specific race. Although the black child’s tone is heartfelt for a sense of belonging, the mother’s teachings of God blinds the boy to believe that suffering on earth will lead him to a place where he become accepted. The network of imageries, symbolism, and tone challenges the reader to see the way that God is used as an outlet of hope and comfort the idea of slavery. Throughout the poem there is a large portion of imagery of nature, which may represent God himself. The slaves found comfort by knowing that God was always by their side. In stanza 4, the idea of God is used to alleviate the hardships of hard labor under the sun when the mother states that, “That we may learn to bear the beams of love.” The “beams of love” can be interpreted as the sun that is God.

Revised thesis paragraph:
            In “The Little Black Boy” by William Blake, the speaker of the poem represents the naïve blindness that blocks away the realities of racism and hardships of the American society during this time period. One can argue that the poet attempts to force the readers to face the fact that the religion of Christianity was used to justify the idea of slavery and the oppression towards a specific race. Although the black child’s tone is yearning for a sense of belonging, the mother’s teachings of God blinds the boy to believe that suffering on earth will lead him to a place where he becomes white, pure and accepted. The child believes that he is “black as if bereav’d of light” and lacks the qualities of an English child who is “white an angel”. The different types of black and white imagery emphasizes the relationship of how skin color is connected to the soul on earth. The network of imageries, symbolism, and tone challenges the reader to see the way that God is used as an outlet of hope and comfort the idea of slavery. Throughout the poem there is a large portion of imagery of nature, which may represent God himself. The slaves found comfort by knowing that God was always by their side. In stanza 4, the idea of God is used to alleviate the hardships of hard labor under the sun when the mother states that, “That we may learn to bear the beams of love.” The “beams of love” can be interpreted as the sun that is God. The characteristics of nature found in the trees, flowers, and the sun represent the belief that God’s precense is among the slaves during their hard labor. The speaker wants to believe that the suffering from nature is bearable since they know that this earthly pain will be compensated in the afterlife.

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ORIGINAL:

In Edmund Spenser’s “Amoretti 75”, the poet chooses to engage with his lover Agayne, in order to emphasize his desire for eternal love. The speaker attempts to overcome the factors of nature and time. One can argue that his attempts to immortalize his love are unrealistic and against nature itself, since at one point all humans face death. Yet, the way the tone, rhythmic form, and symbolism is structured in the poem forces the readers to challenge themselves and believe that the idea of immortalizing love can indeed last after death. While the speaker’s lover is skeptical just as the reader can be as well, towards the idea of eternal love, the speaker tries to convince us that through his writing his love becomes immortalized. In stanza 1, the speaker uses the conceit of eternal or everlasting ideas by comparing certain metaphors that are known to have the opposite effect. The rhyme scheme of this poem tries to convince the readers by contrasting earthly objects that will be destroyed and makes it into a heavenly one that will last forever. The poem is a network of images of earthly ideas that tries to compete with the cruelness of time and nature. After the turn in the poem, brings a sincere tone in which he acknowledges to the fact that his physical body may die off but his love overcomes the forces of death and nature. Therefore, the reader must see the distinction between the speaker’s true motives of each imagery and tone by comparing the same ideas to heavenly objects.

REVISED:

In Edmund Spenser’s “Amoretti 75”, the poet chooses to engage with his lover again in order to emphasize his desire for eternal love. The speaker attempts to overcome the factors of nature and time. The poet finds this sense of hope of eternal love through the characteristics of nature and time which can seem ironic since nature and time are the main reasons to their short-lived love life. One can argue that his attempts to immortalize his love is unrealistic and goes against nature itself, since at one point all humans face death. Yet, the way the tone, rhythmic form, and symbolism is structured in the poem forces the readers to challenge themselves and believe that the idea of immortalizing love can indeed last after death. While the speaker’s lover is skeptical just as the reader can be as well, towards the idea of eternal love, the speaker tries to convince us that through his writing his love becomes immortalized. In stanza 1, the speaker uses the conceit of eternal or everlasting ideas by comparing certain metaphors that are known to have the opposite effect. The literal meaning of the metaphor of eternal love is shown “to dy in dust, but you shall live by fame” (10) describes the human form after death. Yet he uses the characteristics of the element such as the movement and the strong presence of the dust particle in the cycle of nature, which is his attempt to immortalize love. The rhyme scheme of this poem tries to convince the readers by contrasting earthly objects that will be destroyed and makes it into a heavenly one that will last forever. The poem is a network of images of earthly ideas that tries to compete with the cruelness of time and nature. After the turn in the poem, the poet brings a sincere tone in which he acknowledges to the fact that his physical body may die off but his love overcomes the forces of death and nature which becomes everlasting.

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“Book 4”

“O had his powerful destiny ordained
Me some inferior angel, I had stood
Then happy; no unbounded hope had raised
Ambition. Yet why not? some other power* (angel)
as great might have aspired, and me though mean* (inferior low)
Drawn to his part; but other Powers as great
Fell not, but stand unshaken, from within
Or from without, to all temptations armed.
Hadst thou (satan addresses himself) the same free will and power to stand?
Thou hadst: whom hast thou then or what to accuse,
But heav’n’s free love dealt equally to all?
Be then his love accursed, since love or hate,
To me alike, it deals eternal woe.
Nay cursed be thou; since against his thy will
chose freely what it now so justly rues. (regrets)”

Lines 58-72 (Book 4- John Milton)

 

In Milton’s work, the structure of the poem can be interpreted as full complete sentences. There is not a specific rhythm to the poem, instead it contains commas, periods, semicolons, and question marks. The argument is the connection between having free will and one’s life being determined by God’s eternal foresight. Satan is technically a fallen angel from heaven. In this small moment he questions himself for a bit and finally confirms that he is indeed evil. Milton’s use of enjambment can represent the way Satan is trying to express his somewhat regret and mocking with resentment towards God. Satan chose his downfall. However, he resents God due to the fact that God could have foreseen his future yet he did not do anything about it to stop this from happening. The argument if God does offer free-will or eternal foresight of the story Adam and Eve could have represented an issue in the churches during this time.

When Satan states, “O had his powerful destiny ordained” (58) mentions how he feels that his path was somewhat predestined by God. Ordained means a path prescribed by God (E.O.D.) Satan was destined to become a fallen angel when it mentions, “Me some inferior angel, I had stood Then happy; no unbounded hope had raised
Ambition.” (59) He was an inferior angel who had desire to surpass God. However, he questions himself when he states, “Yet why not? some other power* (angel)
as great might have aspired, and me though mean” (61-62) Satan is asking himself, why did he have to be “the one” to fall and not someone else. This portion brings up the concept of pre-destination. In the last portion of the poem Satan then again states and questions God’s idea of free-will. He questions this idea when he states, “But heav’n’s free love dealt equally to all?” Here, Satan could be overlooking the garden of Eden with much jealousy to the fact that Adam and eve look so happy. Then Satan takes a turn by saying, “Be then his love accursed, since love or hate, To me alike, it deals eternal woe.” Satan knows that he is cursed and does not see the difference between love or hate since he has to live in eternal hell. He acknowledges of his current state of being evil. In the last lines he states, “Nay cursed be thou; since against his thy will chose freely what it now so justly rues. (regrets) (68-72) He brings a concept of free-will into the picture. Assuming that he will use this concept to lure Adam and Eve to fall like he did.

 

dictionary definitions (English Oxford Dictionary)
*ordained-a path prescribed by God.
*unbounded-having or appearing to have no limits
*armed-equipped or carrying
*woe-great sorrow or distress

*accursed-literary under a curse

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“When I Have Fears” -John Keats

“When I have Fears” – John Keats

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Before I start to analyze the text’s core context, I wanted to mention the structure of the poem first. The structure of the poem consists 3 quatrains, a turn, and a couplet. The rhyme scheme is abab, cdcd, efef, gg. John Keat’s poem contains the aspects of an Shakespearean form by examining its form.

In “When I have Fears”, the main argument that the writer seems to make is the fact that he fears that death will bring his an early end to his journey of achievements and love in his life. He doesn’t fear death itself, but fears the lack of accomplishments or the weak presences of his accomplishments will cease to not exist after he passes away. In the first quatrain, the metaphors of a desire to accumulate accomplishments before his death by saying ‘I may cease to be’ (1) shows that he fears death places a limitation on time. He wants to make his life complete by making the most out of his life. The word ‘gleaned’ means to extract something, while ‘teeming’ means to be full of (english Oxford dictionary) (Keats, 2).The two words bring about his yearning of the things he wants to do before his time comes an  end. The ‘high-piled books’ (3) also indicates his desire to build a name or purpose for himself in which he will be remembered. Books are known to be passed down to generations and will always be studied and treasured. The written symbols in the books gives the reader a reason to study the text since a symbol or a ‘charact’ry’ (3) is brief yet consists a depth meaning that must take time to figure out. The image of a ‘full-ripened grain’ signifies the fullness and sweetness of something that is ready to be taken in at its best. The following metaphors in this quatrain states what he fears the most, the thought of not being able to fulfill his expectations before death, that he has planned for himself.

The second quatrain, deals with the fear of not being able to fully capture his intimate moment with either a lover or whatever he wants to accomplish. The word ‘romance’
(6) is known to be a mystery associated with love (english Oxford dictionary). The mysteriousness of the ‘huge cloudy symbols’ can be related to the mystery behind love. He fears that he will never be able to keep up with the fast pace movement of time. Since time is something that he cannot control, he states that, ‘I may never live to trace’ which brings the idea that death prevents him from ‘tracing’ these moments. ‘Trace’ is when one finds or discovers by investigation (E.O.D.) which in his case takes time. He wants to capture everything. However at this point he can only rely on ‘chance’ (8). Giving someone or placing a ‘chance’ is doing something risky with a hope of success. He puts the chance on himself ‘with the magic hand’, the term ‘magic’ is also defined as hope.

The third quatrain, takes or imagines himself at the moment of  which he can ‘feel’ death. The moment where he feels that the last moments of his life is barely there, indicates that he has become the ‘fair creature of an hour’ (9). An hour is quite short and puts a limit on the time one has left before it comes to and end. He knows that he ‘shall never look upon thee more’ when time has run out for him to continue to carry out his accomplishments. He fears that he will ‘never have relish in the faery (magical) power’ (11), in other words, he fears that he will not be able to experience the great enjoyment of whatever he is pursuing. Then there is a turn in line 12, ‘of unreflecting love! –then on the shore’, shows a turn and a self comforting talk to himself. The ‘shore’ has the qualities of slowly erasing and concealing things in the sand. The sand of the can represent his desires of accomplishments and love, while the action of the shore slowly eases the ‘fear’ of not completing these tasks. The poem ends with a couplet ‘of the wide world I stand alone, and think Till love and fame to nothingness do sink’ brings a feeling of hope and comfort. If you stand on shore for quite sometime, the waves clean and conceals everything in its path. Your feet start to sink into the sand until you can no longer see the face of your foot. In this metaphor ’till love and fame to nothingness do sink’ can describe how at one point or another, our fear of not being able to obtain ‘love’ and ‘fame’ before a certain time will eventually die out and ‘sink’ its way to a place where we will be at peace.

The first picture (before the blog) represents the imagery I had of the writer from the 1st quatrain to the 4th quatrain, which brought out the image of having fear as you thought of the future in front of you. However, the second picture represents the last couplet. The hope and comforting fact that there will be a moment where the sense of fear will be covered as time passes by.

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“The Sun Rising”

“The Sun Rising” by John Donne

Focus: section 2 (analyze)

The conceit of the poem, “The Sun Rising” is the sun. The sun seems to reflect the lady in which the writer speaks of (a lover). When it comes to the sun, Donne uses the sun’s characteristics of its light. In the first line, “Thy beams, so reverend and strong” describes the image of the woman – of how beautiful she is by comparing her to the sun’s rays. The second line, the author changes his tone about her qualities by challenging her “presence”. In other words, he seems to put her down, “what is so special about you?” On line 3, Donne gives a couple of metaphors of how he can block her out very easily. He uses the words: eclipse, cloud, and wink. These three words, similarly means “to cover”.  However, he acknowledges that his ability to “cover” her would only last for a short period of time. The metaphors he uses tend to show the short period of time. An Eclipse, cloud, and a wink, eventually reopens the object that they once covered up. “but that I would not lose her sight so long”

In line 5, her eyes represents the sun. When you look up at the sun, there is a high change that you can become “blind” from it. “not blinded thine” portrays the effects from the sun/the woman. In line 7, it describes the riches of spices and gold which connects to the qualities of the sun. The sun and gold have a similar color and shine to it. While the spice and the sun have the feature of a “strong” presence.

On line 8, he seems to be asking her to sleep with him, all of a sudden(?). “tomorrow late” could refer to the fact that it was night and that the sun would set. Since it is late at night, he finds her more vulnerable to him (?) [To tell you the truth, from lines 8-10 on the second section, it is not quite clear to me.]

Overall, the conceit of using the sun as the woman is quite interesting. The sun is always present but “rests” at night. The fact that Donne compared the woman’s features to the sun may suggest that she has her moments of weakness (?). During the day, she is strong and “beams” with a sense of blinding those around her, even if you try to “cover” her up. When the sun sets, her strong features start to fade.

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