Essay on One Art - Elizabeth Bishop

1352 Words Dec 28th, 2011 6 Pages
To Love, is to Lose

The most prominent quality of Elizabeth Bishop’s, “One Art,” remains the concise organization and rhyme scheme of the poem, which amazingly keeps the audience informed at all times what the theme. Her choice of a villanelle constantly reminds the audience that “the art of losing” always seem easy until one loses something so much more than an inanimate object and at the point, it does become a “disaster.” Written in 1976, the poem is very modern and uses an impeccable rhyme scheme, diction, and imagery to convey the hints of misery and frantic the speaker feels.
In the opening of the poem, the speaker immediately begins to ponder about “the art of losing.” By writing “the art of losing isn’t hard to master,” she
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Her diction is strong, confident, and unweathering. In the second stanza, the speaker introduces the first item that isn’t difficult to lose and reminds readers of the daily life hassles of finding lost keys. This is the first example of something in life that is easily lost for her. She further backs it up her original statement by saying that their intent is “to be lost” (3), saying that things are meant to be lost, no matter what happens. She instructs the audience to “lose” and “accept” (4), which suggests that she has gone through loss before and it would be better to accept losing things since it would not hurt as much. She then instructs the audience to “practice” (7) losing, so her heart will not be crushed when the audience is accustomed to losing. By line 6, the speaker gets frantic. Her words become careless and the words take a sort of rhythm. She says “losing farther, losing faster”. The alliteration in this line emphasizes how much and how fast she has lost that it is in a place so unreachable at this point. She then loses “places, and names, and where it was [she] meant / to travel” (8-9). She lost more important things, but they were bearable.
In the fourth stanza, the speaker begins to explain more items that have been lost and it apparent that the
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