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How do Hughes and Hardy both use memory in their poems?

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How do Hughes and Hardy both use memory in their poems? Ted Hughes and Thomas Hardy were both poets who lived and wrote in the 20th century. Their work has been highly praised throughout the world. This essay is about the two different poets and how their lives affected them and their work. During the essay, I will refer to different types of memory. The poet's' memory, which is the poets' own memory of an occasion or a particular thing. The readers' memory, which is the knowledge a reader might have, so the poet is reaching out to the reader, making them see what they are talking about. The other is folk memory, also known as myths. This is using myths to accentuate a point, such as Grimm fairytales. Also, the person that the poet is directing his poem to, he may use their memory as well. These are the poems I will write about; "Fullbright Scholars" by Ted Hughes "St. Botolph's" by Hughes "Drawing" by Hughes "Epiphany" by Hughes "Dreamers" by Hughes "Daddy" by Sylvia Plath "The Going" by Thomas Hardy "The Voice" by Hardy "At Castle Boterel" by Hardy "Fullbright Scholars" This poem was based on the summer of 1955. The "Fullbright Scholars" were American students who had won scholarships to come to England and study at various universities. Sylvia Plath was among them. Ted Hughes remembers walking down a road and noticing a picture of the Fullbright Scholars. Strangely enough, he cannot remember what street it is in. He says instead, "Where was it, in the Strand?". He also asks if she were among them. He wonders which of them he might meet. He doesn't remember her face. He says that he "scanned particularly the girls". This is a reference to the fact that Ted Hughes was a ladies man. I think this also refers to everything that happens after this, but most especially Ted's affair with Assia. ...read more.


Ted then says, through the poem, that by rejecting the fox, he is admitting how his marriage has failed. "Dreamers" This poem was written about the first time Ted met Assia Wevill. It describes how Ted and Sylvia were sitting down when Assia turned up at their door with her husband. Ted talks of how Sylvia was "transfixed" by Assia, how Assia was everything Sylvia had ever wanted to be. Ted describes Assia as animal-like, almost as if she was hunting for her prey. In this example, Ted is obviously her prey. Again Ted mentions Fate, as is this is all nothing to with him, and he cannot help what is happening to him. He talks of it as on Assia's side, no longer on Sylvia's side. Ted says that he had no control, that is was not his fault, that he was "inert". Ted tries to blame Sylvia for what happened, when he says, "She fascinated you". He acts as though this is why he started an affair with Assia. Assia was everything Sylvia had dreamed about being. She was Jewish, Polish and Germanic. She seemed like the persecuted female that Sylvia wished to be. She still had hints of a German accent, this made Sylvia even more amazed by her. Then there is an interesting point. Ted talks of her Kensington jewels. This was basically saying she was trying too hard to be posh and to fit in with England's upper class. Ted might have wondered, was she covering anything up? Assia is written as a threat many times, as indeed she was, but Ted uses folk memory as well as his own memory. He talks of her as the "Black Forest Wolf" "Out of Grimm". He then uses another train of thought. He uses a Jewish creation myth, talking about this "Lilith of Abortions". This just accentuates the fact that Assia was Jewish, and a powerful sexual being, but Sylvia was not, therefore might not have had that hold over Ted. ...read more.


He talks of it as thought it was their journey that made it come to life, as if they started all of it. Even as if they had begun its life. Hardy thinks of the rocks as children, as children are meant to represent a time when you are very happy, he says that the rocks bear the imprints of their footsteps - the places they walked when they were happiest. He believes that as he is walking it, Emma is walking the path with him, she is encouraging him to travel there again. He is then very aware of his own mortality. Thomas Hardy then talks of "old love's domain", and how he will never walk upon it again. This basically means he will never love again - he will always love and remember Emma. Hughes and Hardy both used memory in their poems, thought the most common type of memory they used was their wives memories. They were writing the poems to their wives, who were both dead, so the poets needed to tell them how much they missed them, and also the things they regretted when they were alive. The reason they used their wives memories was that they wanted to keep some sentimentality in the poems, to let them know whom the poems were addressed to. Thomas Hardy did not really use folk memory in his poems. Ted and Sylvia tended to. This shows that they were more alike than they seemed. Hardy talked more of their life together, and the things they had done together, whereas Ted seemed to talk more about things they had done differently, and he did different points of view. In "Dreamers", he talks of his point of view, and then of Sylvia's view of Assia Wevill. These poets were slightly alike, but I think that Thomas Hardy was more of a romantic poet that Ted was, and that he tended to think of his wife as perfect. Ted, on the other hand, remembered Sylvia's good and bad points. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 Margaret Gee, 10CF ...read more.

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