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Compare the methods the poets use to have an impact on their readers in 'Limbo' and in another poem

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Introduction

Q: Compare the methods poets use to have an impact on their readers in .Limbo. (page 5) and in one other poem. (27 marks) The poets uses poetic techniques, language and structure to convey their ideas, attitudes and themes in their poems, which in turn creates the specified effects or impacts on the reader. The poem 'Limbo' is a poem based on the harsh experience of slavery through the poet's eye; his attitudes are quite ambiguous and thus help to create a sense of subtle life faced by slaves on reader's mind. The other poem I choose to compare for the effect is the poem 'Blessing'. While 'Limbo' poses the theme of inequality, 'Blessing' creates a similar effect though in different context: we are driven to see, feel and imagine what it is like to receive the scarce necessity water, which we take for granted. Layouts in both poems are a deliberate method employed by the poets in terms of visual effects. Blessing employs fragmented lines in the first stanza illustrating the simple fact: "There never is enough water." ...read more.

Middle

This image is powerful to set the scene for the events that follow. Similarly the poem 'Limbo creates such an impact on the starting line: hard striking in order to encourage the reader to read on. Employing 'and' as the first word implies that this suffering is not recent; it's been going on for generations. The 'silence' suggests the slaves speak another language hence why they wouldn't have been able to express themselves. Strong alliteration of the letter 's' in lines 10-13 adds to the sinister suffering for the slaves due to possible beatings. The reader may interpret 'stick' in two possible ways as it is ambiguous: 'stick' that is the limbo pole, which is extremely difficult to get beneath; slave life is hard to avoid, thus it "is the whip" that causes pain and suffering. Other meaning being the 'stick' the slaves were beaten with. Strong rhythm along with repetition creates an impact of relentlessness and emphasizes the monotony of slave labour. 'Blessing' contrasts techniques used in the first stanza, before water pipe bursts to the second stanza when it does. ...read more.

Conclusion

Furthermore, it reinforces the power of nature: water that transforms people's lives. However, the suffering caused by oppression is evident throughout 'Limbo' until the very last lines when the tone swifts to a positive tone. This contrast is shown through positive diction such as "raising, calling, and praising" that suggests hope though it is contradicted by the "burning ground" implying a new slave life. The reluctance of facing subtleness is enforced by the three fragmented words: "hot slow step". Sun is referred to as hope and life giving in both poems: "sun coming up" while 'Blessing' uses sun as a symbol of life giving quality of water: "liquid sun". I prefer 'Blessing' more than 'Limbo' because of it's underlying theme of poverty and unequal resources for all human beings. I have been impressed by the way Blessing portrays innocent happiness within the disturbing simile that is created by reading the first and last lines together: "The skin cracks like a pod/ over the small bones". It makes me realize how advantaged we are, who take it for granted while there is another part of this world who would have to "imagine he drip of it". ...read more.

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