What Is The Age Of 21 Poem Essay

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The age of 21 holds great significance to a person's life. It is the start of adulthood and the gateway to new freedoms. Within the poems To Sir John Lade, on His Coming of Age by Samuel Johnson, and When I Was One-and- Twenty by A.E Housman, we see both authors discuss the qualities and importance of being 21, but they come from different perspectives with Housman’s poem coming from the point of view of someone who has already surpassed being 21 and is now 22, whereas Johnson’s poem is written for someone is who is currently 21. These two perspectives both reveal how the age of 21 is the threshold to where ones childhood dies and ones adulthood is born, and all heartbreaking moment and elements that await. As you enter adulthood, you realize…show more content…
It introduces one to the idea of materialism and how money becomes something you trade in exchange for something else, and although…show more content…
In Housman’s poem, the speaker is speaking from the experience of being 21 and he is reflecting on the past from his current age, 22, as can be seen by the second to last line of the poem, “And I am two-and-twenty.”(15) Johnson’s poem on the other hand in coming from the age of 21. His poem speaks of what it means to be presently 21, whereas Housman’s poem speaks of the after effects of being 21 and the lessons that have already been learned not waiting to be learned. Housman’s poem also speaks to the fact that one will not remain 21 forever and that although we make mistakes at this age, there is still life after that age and you are able to grow and move on, whereas Johnson acts as though being 21 is the very pinnacle of one's life and that anything after that either does not constitute as life or isn’t that same quality of life. The two authors differing points show us how easy it is to get caught in the moment and how that causes us to forget about the future. When a person turns 21 they live as though they will stay 21 forever and this is partly due to the fact that we may be trying to cling onto the remnants of our own childhood where all our mistakes were easily forgiven and
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