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Les Sylphides

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Introduction

Write a commentary on two of the poems you have studied, showing how the poets use of language has made each poem memorable Les Sylphides The title (name) Les Sylphides is originated from a very famous French ballet composer, and therefore gives a feeling of history, affection and above all a template of a ballet atmospheric depiction, which consists of excellent use of imagery throughout the poem. The poem is set out in a semi traditional format of five lines per verse, however there is no rhyming. The first two lines in each verse are longer in content then the three following lines. The long lines give a narrative description whereas the following three lines are more poetic in their structure. The three shorter lines, being more poetic, draw the reader into the young man's imagination and deeper thoughts inspired by the ballet, which consist of colour, form, feelings and sound. ...read more.

Middle

Sophisticated alliteration us also present in the poem, "Calyx upon Calyx, Canterbury bells". The bodies of the dancing girls, their arms and their faces remind him of swaying seaweed in a pool. This is a fine example of the imagery, which Macniece displays in his poem. The third verse continues by expressing the deeper thoughts of the man as he sees within the dancers and particularly in his own girlfriend, a future life together. He imagines the future where he sees their life together and particularly how the young woman in his dreams, and how she will appear to him. Verse four breaks into his imagination when the ballet comes to an end. The music stops, the dancers bow to the audience as the curtains are drawn and there is a shuffle of the audiences programmes. ...read more.

Conclusion

Although the dreams and imagery of the first verses have now passed there was still the memory of the flowers and flowing streams of a previous time in their life. The overall feeling which is left in my mind, after studying this poem is one of sad irony and almost a feeling of pathos; a poem which began with happiness and the use of vivid imagination as the man happily describes what he sees in the ballet and in his own imagination, ends in the mundane feeling of detachment in the situations of married life. The young girl who had been the source of all these happy dreams now finds herself in the reality of married life where the situation of life are bound together and all but exclude the memories. Where now is that river, which once flowed and where now are those flowers which once swayed in the breeze? ...read more.

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