Death in Auden’s Funeral Blues, Forche’s Memory of Elena, and Dickinson’s Last Night that She lived
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Death Reflected in Auden’s Funeral Blues, Forche’s Memory of Elena, and Dickinson’s Last Night that She lived
Death is a natural and inevitable part of life. Everyone will experience death, whether it is of a loved one or oneself. In W.H. Auden’s poem “Funeral Blues” (1003), he describes such a catastrophic event and the drastic effect that it has on his life. It is interesting how people choose to accept this permanent and expected event, death. Similarly, Emily Dickinson has written many poems about death, such as “The last Night that She lived” (843), which describes a family waiting for a woman or girl to die and the dreary and depressed mood that exists within the household. Mourning is considered a perfectly healthy…show more content… I can easily relate to these lines because it does seem like the world stops completely when a loved one is lost. Auden also writes, “He was my North, my South, my East and West/My working week and my Sunday rest” (9-10). It is apparent that the person he has lost is everything to him and losing him is a very hard thing to experience. I can still remember feeling a similar way when I lost a close family member. It seems hard to get on with life and try to move on when such a large part of life is taken away, and this is exactly the mourning portrayed as Auden writes about the devastation and confusion of coming to terms with the fact that his loved one is actually gone.
Moreover, Auden uses several techniques in “Funeral Blues,” including a simple aa, bb rhyme scheme and a plethora of hyperboles. The rhyme scheme is effective because it makes the poem flow smoothly. This makes the poem seem to “pass by” the reader, much like the rest of life passes by someone who is still feeling the hurt of experiencing death. The hyperboles help to signify exactly how much the lost loved one means to the poet. An example can be seen in the lines, “Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead/Scribbling on the sky He Is Dead” (5-6). Obviously the entire world is not too concerned with the death of one person, but it is apparent the poet feels that the rest of the world must be put on hold