Write an essay (250-300 words) based on the following question:
If there exist some common motifs among Dickinson, Donne, and Marvell, they must be love and death. Obsessed with death, these poets use different ways to depict their relationship with the Grim Reaper. Besides death, love (be it religious or secular) is another recurrent theme of these three poets. Among the poems we discussed so far, pick one to analyze any of these themes. Or you can compare two or even three poets' different strategies (i.e. metaphysical conceits, simile, metaphor, hyperbole, personification, etc.) to approach these themes. Explain why you think these strategies are ingenious and unconventional.
Write an essay (250-300 words) based on ONE of the following questions:
- Compare the portrayal of the parent-child relationship in any two poems in our week 7’s readings, focusing especially on the poems’ tones and themes.
- What words in Robert Hayden’s “Those Winter Sundays” suggest the son’s feelings toward his father and his home? What words indicate that his attitudes have changed since the time depicted in the poem? Write an essay in which you compare the speaker’s feelings, as a youth and then later as a man, about his father and his home.
- Kelly Cherry’s “Alzheimer’s” uses contrasts—especially before and after—to characterize the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease. What evidence does the poem provide about what the man used to be like? What specific changes have come about? How does the setting of the poem suggest some of those changes?
- Jimmy Santiago Baca’s “Green Chile” uses different chiles to symbolize different generations’ attitudes toward Mexican culture. What different qualities do the red and green chiles have? Which words in the poem help personify the chiles? How fully do these words reflect the differences between the speaker and the grandmother?