• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How are sadness and loss recurrent in poetry down years?Comparing 4 poems

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How are sadness and loss recurrent in poetry down years? In this piece of coursework I shall explore how the themes of sadness and loss are recurrent in poetry throughout time. I shall do this by closely analysing two pre-1914 poems and four post-1914 poems and show how these two themes are explored by the poets. The two poems written before 1914 shall be La Belle Dame Sans Merci written by John Keats and The Lady of Shalott written by Alfred, Lord Tennyson. The four poems written after 1914 shall be Modes of Pleasure and Black Jackets, written by Thom Gunn, and Afternoons and Mr Bleaney, written by Philip Larkin. I shall start with the poem La Belle Dame Sans Merci. The poem La Belle Dame Sans Merci tells of a knight who is in love with, and has been abandoned by, a beautiful daughter of a faery. The fact that she is a faery is important as at the time this poem is set, faeries were classed a mysterious force, not to be reckoned with. When found, the Knight is said to be "alone and palely loitering" and also "so haggard and woe-begone". ...read more.

Middle

Modes of Pleasure describes a middle-aged man in a bar, with no future, only the same he has done in the past. Already you can notice that this man must be feeling sadness in the fact he has wasted his life on the things that aren't essential. The first line is powerful as it summarises the theme, "I jump with terror seeing him". The man is scared of his life now as he sees his reflection in the bar. The biggest loss in this poem is the loss of life he has endured, "The Fallen Rake, being fallen from the heights of twenty to middle age". The 'Fallen Rake' knows the sadness that will occur when he loses all he has, "In different rooms without a word would all be lost some time in time." In that quotation he was talking about the cheap dates he gets in the bars, and what goes on to happen after the date. "Rigid he sits: brave, terrible, the will awaits its gradual end"- this man is willing to lose the rest of his life doing the same he has always done as he knows he is too far gone to change the future now; which bring sadness into his body. ...read more.

Conclusion

The descriptions of the room show that he has no feelings now about anything, "Bed, upright chair, sixty-watt bulb, no hook behind the door, no room for books or bags- "I'll take it."". He wants to lead a plain life, so he is choosing his own destiny. This man has now lost his own life, and feels he leads the one of his predecessor, "So it happens that I lay... And his sister's house in stoke." He has learnt the habits of Mr Bleaney, and all his annual pastimes. The last two paragraphs show that he actually realised that you need to take the future into your owns with such quotes as, "how we live measures our own nature". This room he lives in is reprehensively perfect, as he hates it, but it is a perfect situation to live in. After realising this, the man must have felt a sense of sadness of how he has ended up living life, in another person's shoes. As a summary, poems written before 1940 have no difference in the sense of feelings compared to those written after. Even though some portrayed Knights and Faerys, for example, as the only ones with feelings, they also portrayed the small people, normal people. Christian Orchard. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Philip Larkin section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Philip Larkin essays

  1. Wild Oats & Afternoons: A Comparitive Essay

    The last three lines refer to "bosomy rose" whose photographs he has presumably carried about in his wallet for twenty years. The "snaps" show her "with fur gloves on"; her hand denied him even in a photograph, as this most effective of insulation freezes him out.

  2. Comparing and analysing Heaney's 'Blackberry Picking' and Plath's 'Blackberrying.'

    as eyes as Heaney does here "on top big dark blobs burned like a plate of eyes". This may suggest a correlation in the writings but I shall talk more of this in my conclusion". The last line of this verse there is another reference to blood "our palms sticky as Bluebeard's".

  1. The Historyof War Poetry and the works of Wilfred Owen

    His dazzling reputation survived for many years, but he is now chiefly valued for his highly accomplished lighter verse, such as 'The Old Vicarage, Granchester' and 'Heaven'.(4) He wrote his five famous war sonnets, of which "the Soldier" is one.

  2. poetry coursework

    In contrast Wordsworth's poem is written in the form of a sonnet which usually outlines one particular thought or feeling. Also,it describes the man made elements of the city. Wordsworth uses alternate line rhyming to create the effect of order 'fair ' ,' wear', 'hill ',' will'.He tries to bring

  1. Comparing the poems 'London' and 'A London Fete' by Blake and Patmore.

    Meaning that, through only their own minds, they have 'chained' themselves to their current way of life. However, while it may be that they are trapped in this situation because of their own minds it is due to the influence of the upper class or the Establishment.

  2. Sir Philip Sidneys poem The Nightingale and Amy Clampitts poem Syrinx are two very ...

    and should take some gladness because: ? That here is juster cause of plaintiful sadness/ Thine earth now springs, mine fadeth;? (lines 10-11) Here again we see the speaker use Spring as a reference to a new beginning for Philomela.

  1. Through the three texts La Belle Dame sans Merci, Lamia and The lady of ...

    Women are also portrayed as seductive and treacherous as ?La Belle Dame? takes the knight to her ?elfin grot? only to lull him to sleep and disappear. This image of women as cruel temptresses is further intensified throughout the rest of the poem, especially in stanza ten which

  2. Women are dismissed as insignificant in both the poetry of Larkin and Eliot. How ...

    The description of the poster has turned violent, again reflecting the effective rape of the woman, with a ?knife? having been used to ?stab right through?, although this is said in a almost humorous tone ?tuberous cock and balls? as if this is fun to do, and not humiliating to the woman.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work