Analysis Of My Papa's Waltz And The Minefield

Decent Essays

In the poems “My Papa's Waltz,” and “The Minefield,” both authors address a similar idea of abuse and how it has affected their lives. Despite reaching a similar conclusion, they achieve it through different means. While “My Papa’s Waltz” uses a smooth and consistent meter and rhyme, “The Minefield” uses the exact opposite, no rhyme and a jarring and inconsistent meter to ultimately achieve a very similar result. In addition, both writers have a similar diction but in the overall piece, they are used to attain different outcomes. Roethke uses iambic trimeter throughout the entirety of the poem to accentuate the very smooth and rhythmic characteristics of a waltz. Not to mention that trimeter and a waltz are both in groups of three. In addition, the meter and rhyme both stay consistent throughout the entire piece. However, the light and dance-like attitude are changed with the contrasting diction. The use of words such as “death,” “battered,” and “beat” drastically changes the meaning of the poem. Due to this hints of violence, this strong contrast, makes the piece very difficult to understand and much less straight-forward. In fact, there are many different interpretations of the text depending on what aspect is focused on. If one focuses on the diction and connotations of the words you’d conclude that the poem is only about abuse, yet if you focus on the rhythm, you’d find it’s a very happy reflection on the narrator’s time with his/her father. In reality, it is more

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