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How do the two Poets Anne Bronte and Thomas Hardy Use Naturalistic Imagery and Convey the Feeling of Pessimism in their Poems Song and The Darkling Thrush?

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Lauren Goadby Comparative Essay – Pre. 1914 Poems - ‘Song’ & ‘The Darkling Thrush’… How do the two Poets Anne Bronte and Thomas Hardy Use Naturalistic Imagery and Convey the Feeling of Pessimism in their Poems ‘Song’ and ‘The Darkling Thrush’? In this essay I intend to compare the use of nature in ‘Song’ by Anne Brontë and ‘The Darkling Thrush’ by Thomas Hardy and look at how the poets convey the feeling of pessimism in their poems. Both of the poems have seemingly bleak outlooks with the theme of change, as well as the use of imagery of nature and animals. ‘Song’ was written in 1845 by Anne Brontë, with Thomas Hardy writing his poem, ‘The Darkling Thrush’, in around 1898 or 1899 ( – the dates exactly are often disputed as on the original poem they would appear to have been changed); however both poems were written before the turn of the 1900s. Anne Brontë came from a family whose fame was established through their use of the English language throughout their many novels and poems. ...read more.


lot of love poetry and often conveyed singing sweetly; however Hardy has used its more common name with less of a flowing sound. The added use of ?Darkling? makes the title much more ominous and overall conveys a much darker meaning to both the title and adds to the overall effect of the poem. Formed in four octaves, or eight-line, stanzas, with an ABABCDCD rhyme scheme, "The Darkling Thrush" is written in iambic tetrameter. Lines one, three, five, and seven contain four stressed syllables, and lines two, four, six, and eight, three stressed syllables. This set structure and the use of these conventional features when also contrasted with the tone of despair throughout, creates a tension in the poem. Both ?Song? and ?The Darkling Thrush? are seemingly dark and pessimistic poems which consist of lots of imagery ? both of nature and death. This use of death to show the bleak turn (and death) of the century can be seen throughout ?The Darkling Thrush? through the use of adjectives such as ?spectre-gray?, verbs such as ?haunted? and nouns such as ?corpse? and ?crypt? ?it is clear that Thomas Hardy and many other people have very little hope for the future. ...read more.


a positive outcome, however in this last stanza, Anne Brontë indicates a longing to return to the original state of matters; she would rather ‘be the hare’. This suggests a pessimistic mood as however the situation they long for another and are not optimistic about the future. The enjambement in this stanza is also important as it creates a tension in the poem and inspires the reader to uncover the reasons for the longing for role reversal. Overall, I think that ‘Song’ by Anne Brontë and ‘The Darkling Thrush’ by Thomas Hardy both convey a pessimistic view about the future and explore the use of naturalistic imagery. The naturalistic imagery in both poems is very important and it is through this use of nature that the pessimism and true meaning of both poems are understood. Nature is a prominent theme throughout the poems and conveyed through the use of the many metaphors throughout each poem. The forms of both poems are also very important at creating a tension in the poems and the alliteration is used successfully to put emphasis on key parts of the poems. ...read more.

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