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"Hughes thinks more highly of animals than humans." How far does his poetry support this statement?

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Introduction

"Hughes thinks more highly of animals than humans." How far does his poetry support this statement? I have studied three poems that were written by Ted Hughes. They are called "The Warm and the Cold", "Work and Play" and "Hawk Roosting". "Work and Play" is about a swallow and comparing it to humans. "Hawk Roosting" is about the feeling of power and authority of the Hawk and "The Warm and the Cold" is describing all the different animals being safe and warm at night. I am going to prove that Hughes talks through his poetry about his love of animals and dislike of humans. In "The Warm and the Cold" he uses a strict structure with the first section describing the night and in the second part about the animals. He uses a lot of similes when describing the animals like; "The hare strays down the highway Like a root going deeper" as this repeats it gives the poem a continuous rhythm. ...read more.

Middle

In "Work and Play" Hughes compares the human activity and the swallow's. At first he makes out that it is the humans who are playing because they are at the beach. By the second verse it is pretty clear that it is the swallow that is playing and the humans are working. This poem is set out in four verses. Each verse has two sections, in the first three verses the first section is about the swallow and the second part is about the people, but in the last verse the first section is about the humans so the poem ends with a vivid description of swallow. Hughes uses a lot of different techniques in this poem. In this poem he shows that he is a sensual writer describing sound "lost kids squalling", sight "a rainbow of purples", touch "While man-eating flies jab electric shock needles", taste "the honey-slow river" and smell "inhaling petroleum". ...read more.

Conclusion

The way it describes the swallow's nest is perfect because they really do look just like a slightly cupped hand under the eaves. In "Hawk Roosting" Hughes uses fewer techniques than the other two because it is a personal poem almost like Hughes turned into a hawk for a day. This is reinforced by the presence of a lot of personal pro-nouns such as "I", "me" and "my". This also gives you the feeling that you can see directly into the hawk's mind. In the poem the hawk seems to believe that he is like a god above everyone, "Now I hold Creation in my foot". He is arrogant and big headed but from his view he is right. Hughes thinks more highly animals and his poetry proves it by similes, metaphor and description. He uses some alliteration, rhyming and enjambment to add to the effect. His poetry leaves me feeling that humans are all that is wrong with the world, that, and wishing I was an animal. ...read more.

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