Compare Woodchucks And Traveling Through The Dark

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Human beings are often times very cruel to wild animals. The poems “Woodchucks” by Maxine Kumin and “Traveling through the Dark” by William Stafford depict two similar cruel interactions with animals. Both poems feature a narrator who treats wild animals as lesser beings for the “greater good”. However, the narrators do not share the same intentions and guilt. In the end though, both speakers show that they believe they are in a position of higher value than these animals. In “Woodchucks” by Maxine Kumin and “Traveling through the Dark” by William Stafford, use of diction, imagery, and tone create a tense and brutal mood that reveals the relationship between the speaker and the animals.
In the poems, the author's’ diction helps display the relationship shared between the speaker and the animals. In “Woodchucks”, diction helps create a relationship where the woodchucks deserve to be killed because the damage they’ve done. Kumin uses this as justification for the narrator's malicious slaughtering of the woodchucks; like in line 12, the woodchucks are not eating the carrots, they are beheading them. Replacing the word eating with beheading gives off a violent and negative connotation directed towards the woodchucks. “Traveling through the Dark” uses a similar strategy to make the animal seem less significant. In line 6, the dead deer is described as a “heap”. Objects associated with the word heap are items of little to no significance. Stafford exemplifies his use of diction
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