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

How does Hardy portray the themes of loss and loneliness in his poems?

Extracts from this document...


English GCSE Coursework - Pre 1914 Poetry How does Hardy portray the themes of loss and loneliness in his poems? Introduction From 1862 to 1867 Hardy worked for an architect in London and later continued to practice architecture, despite ill health, in Dorset. Meanwhile, he was writing poetry with little success. He then turned to novels as more salable, and by 1874 he was able to support himself by writing. This is also the year that Hardy married his first wife, Emma Gifford. Their marriage lasted until her death in 1912, which prompted Hardy to write his collection of poems called Veteris Vestigiae Flammae (Vestiges of an Old Flame). These poems are some of Hardy's finest and describe their meeting and his subsequent loss. In this essay I am going analyse three poems and those three poems will be "The Voice", "Neutral Tones" and "Where The Picnic Was" Section 1 - Context Thomas Hardy was writing around from 1870 and gave up novel writing in 1895 after receiving harsh criticism. In those times the laws were very different. For instance women could not vote at all which could have made a difference if they did vote. ...read more.


The rhyme structure for this poem is ABBA. Some examples are: "day", "gray", "god" and "sod". In this poem Hardy is telling us that from the start of his relationship with this woman is starting to go wrong right from the start; and this shows that the love is sad and that this is not the woman for Hardy. This also shows that he is sad and depressed about his relationship. In the third poem "Where The Picnic Was" the structure of this poem is quite complicating as the first two verses are the same and the third verse is longer than the other two verses. In the first and second verse there is nine lines and in the third verse there is twelve lines. At first the poem starts off happy, then gradually becomes very sad towards then ending and the ending of the poem itself. This is because at the ending of the poem Emma is dead, so basically this whole poem somewhat contrasts Emma's life on a whole. The ending of each verse summarizes the verse itself. Section 4 - Language and Imagery The language and imagery that Hardy used in these three poems is powerful in it's own way. ...read more.


"And the sea breathes brine" this shows that the sea is breathing and this quote is a good example of an assonance as the letter for the assonance is the letter E. "Now a cold wind blows" "And the glass is gray" the first quote is a use of pathetic fallacy and the second quote is use of colour which is to echo Hardy's mood. In this poem there are some poetic devices that are not used such as: metaphors, onomatopoeia and repetition. The reason Hardy uses the themes of loss and loneliness is because of the death of his wife Emma. This makes Hardy write poems about her, for example what they use to do or describing her on how she made Hardy happy. My personal feelings on the poems we studied is that Hardy has used a lot of poetic devices to describe on Emma or on what they use to do together. I would find that "Where The Picnic Was" was the poem that I prefer because this is the only poem that has used most of the poetic devices and each ending of the verse summarizes the verse itself. Also the mood changes, from happy to sad, which contrasts Emma when she was alive and contrasts the death of Emma as well. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Thomas Hardy 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 GCSE Thomas Hardy essays

  1. Thomas Hardy

    The effect of these quotes lets the reader see everything from two different points. Where Hardy quotes " late the pyres" the pyres are what are used at funerals to burn the bodies. This is sort of a warning about the ship and the iceberg meeting.

  2. English GCSE Coursework - Pre1914 Poetry

    This quote means the ground is dry, and the nature is dry and cold which is pathetic fallacy were the nature echoes the mood. Hardy is feeling sad in nearly all the poems he has written after Emma's death. A quote to show this from 'Neutral Tones' is 'They had fallen from an ash, and were gray'.

  1. "Explore Hardy's concerns over misery and loss"

    This is typical for someone coping with loss. Hardy also mentions being able to sense, hear or see Emma in "The voice" which also shows how Hardy is trying to cope with the loss of Emma. Hardy then starts to reminisce the good times and shows nostalgia.

  2. Show how Hardy responds to the death of his wife, the thoughts and feelings ...

    beauty and he describes her riding along the 'beetling Beeny Crest' with him, maybe a sign they were happy and free to do what they wanted to, and how this contrasts to his feelings now. In the last line of this stanza, Hardy changes his language from 'me' and 'you'

  1. Comparing the poems 'Neutral Tones' and 'Absence'

    She called the birds "thoughtless", which shows she was angry with them and it also gives the impression that she feels the birds were supposed to feel her pain with her, but instead, was oblivious to her misery. The line, which suggests that she wants to feel happy, is "singing an ecstasy I could not share".

  2. Explain how Hardy shows loss and regret in his poems

    This shows how Hardy uses nature to fit into the context. That line is meant to add feeling that nature is hard and doesn't care. It also shows the coldness that ravaged his body, which marked the changing of his world: "altered all" (Stanza 2, Line 14)

  1. Extended commentary of 'During Wind and Rain' by Thomas Hardy

    Not only does the obvious alliteration of the ?r? sound mount both the tension and force placed upon the final verb, but it also mirrors the ugly nature of the act itself. ?Ript? is merely an archaic spelling of ?ripped? ? the sense is the same and bears the same strength.

  2. Extended commentary of 'Neutral Tones' by Thomas Hardy

    It is negative thought in any case. Quote SLS: "They see previous mysteries which no longer excite them". Indeed, Hardy continues to suggest both the boredom created within their relationship and uses more distancing techniques in the next lines: "And some words played between us to and fro/ On which lost the more of our love" Note

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