Thl8234 - Advanced Theory of Poetry

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2013 Study Unit: THL8234 (Advance Theory of Poetry) Assignment Number: 02 Part 1: Textual Analysis of Poetry Question 1: Sketching a Thatcher with metaphors It is certainly true that one of the distinguishing features of poetic texts is the use of figurative or non-literal language – this essay highlights the fact that metaphors do contribute to the understanding of a poem. Ted Hughes’ poem, Sketching a Thatcher, is loaded with vivid imagery and ample metaphorical constructions which aids to validate this fact. In order to uncover the message behind this poem, one must take a closer look at the arguments, focus expressions and tenor/vehicle constructions of at least six local metaphorical constructions…show more content…
The argument “Lizard-silk” is qualified by the focus expression “his lizard-skinny hands”. This construction leads one to understand that the thatcher’s hands (tenor) are skinny (adjectival focus) like a lizard (vehicle/ argument), suggesting that the old man’s hands are dry, bony and battered from thatching roofs over the years. The interesting part of the construction is the argument of “Lizard-silk”, as silk can be associated with qualities of smoothness and elegance, unlike a lizard. This might suggest that –although the old thatcher’s hands are dry and worn out from thatching roofs– he does his work with elegance and grace and makes sure that he does the job right. The sixth and final local metaphorical construction to be explored can be found in line twenty nine, “Suns have worn him, like an old sun-tool”. Instead of just using animals the poets makes use of nature to help portray the image of the old thatcher. The thatcher (tenor) has spent many a year thatching roofs under the heat of the sun, and has become tanned and rusty like his tools. There are ample metaphorical constructions to be explored in this poem; however, these six constructions are adequate in giving a clear description of the old thatcher and his way of life, thus proving how figurative language does contribute to the understanding of

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