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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Avisha Kumar on Tuesday July 19, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to CHEM 2150 at Cornell University taught by in Summer 2016. Since its upload, it has received 5 views.
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Date Created: 07/19/16
1. “The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls” The speaker is an observant narrator in this poem. He described the mystery and power of the sea, and the traveler who is associated with the shore, but does not form any personal connections with the poem itself. The setting of the poem is the sea, so that the narrator can describe the tide. The poem starts as “the twilight darkens, the curfew calls,” and ends when “the morning breaks” (2 and 11). The subject of the poem is the tide of the ocean. The speaker centers on the beauty and power of the ocean, using imagery and personification to describe how “the little waves, with their soft, white hands/ efface the footprints in the sand” (14 15). Each of the actions of the ocean described is caused by the movement of the tides. The theme of the poem is continuity of the tide. Each stanza of the poem is ended with “and the tide rises, the tide falls” (5,15, 20). No matter what happens and regardless of the time of day or actions of outsiders, the motion of the ocean remains undisturbed and constant. 2. “Your Know It’s Really Cold” The speaker of the poem seems like the poet herself. She has a personal connection to the poem, and speaks as if she had experienced the events in the poem firsthand, rather than describing what someone else felt. The setting is someone where the speaker feels isolated and cold. The cold is so overwhelming for the speaker “wake[s] up hurtin” (2). The subject of the poem is isolation and pain. The speaker emphasizes in this short poem that a lot of pain has been inflicted on her, and there is usually no one personal around to help her. The only person she knows puts her “through to the police” (6). The theme of the poem is coldness. The speaker feels coldness both physically and emotionally, and so the pain is both physical and emotional as well. 3. “Saturday’s Child” The speaker of the poem is a misfortunate person who has lived her life in poverty and sorrow. She uses metaphors to describe her predicament, saying that “I cut my teeth as the black raccoon—from implements of battle,” because she has to live a defensive and underprivileged life (34). The setting is unclear. This poem basically describes the difference between her life and a rich child’s life, and does not take during a specific time or anywhere significant. The subject of the poem is the narrator’s miserable life. She describes how others godparents are “opulent fairies” who provide them with any material needs, whereas “Pain godfathered [the speaker]” (10 and 12). The theme of the poem is that “Saturday’s child,” or a child born to a poor family, is subjected to sorrow and misery for most of their life as they learn to survive in the world. They are viewed as a burden by their parents and have no one who ensures their safety and comfort. 4. “The Road not Taken” The speaker of the poem is a person who is experiencing a big transition in his life that is influenced by a decision. He is realizing how his choice has affected his life and his perspective on how he views the world. The setting of the poem is metaphorically at a fork in the road. It stands to represent a decision that the speaker has to make. He states “I could not travel both” which means that he will have to follow through on his decision regardless of the consequences (2). The subject of the poem is the road less traveled by. This road is important because this road is a turning point for the speaker’s life. The theme of the poem is that decisions should not be influenced by what the crowd is doing. By not taking the road less travelled, people are hindering themselves from discovering something new about the world and widening their perspective. The speaker states “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I/I took the one less travelled by,/And that has made all the difference” (1820). Sam, I agree with your theme for the first poem. I said something along the lines of “time goes on and waits for no one,” but I emphasized the power of nature as well. Since the tide was repeated throughout the poem, I also talked about how the tide is continuous regardless of its surroundings, just like time. The second poem is really powerful even though it is short. The speaker is able to convey the misery she is feeling and even establish the theme of loneness through the lines “when you wake up hurtin… and the only one you know to call is the operator” (2 and 4-5). I did not realize that the child in the third poem is dead, but now that I reread the poem, it makes sense. This also ties in with the underlying theme of the poem, since the author is emphasizing the rough and painful life poor people have to endure, and how she has to change in order to defend herself from the world. She compares herself to the rich children, who “are teethed on a silver spoon, With the stars strung for a rattle,” in order to make clear her harsh predicament (1-2). It makes sense now that she is reflected back on her miserable life as a dead person. My favorite poem was the “The Road Not Taken.” I have read this poem many times before, and I enjoyed the opportunity to read and analyze it again. I am inspired throughout my life to do something unique that has not been done by the majority of people before. Even though it takes courage, the results can be enlightening and can strengthen my personality. -Avisha
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