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Les Murrays Widower in the country

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Les Murray's "Widower in the country" Les Murray's poem "Widower in the country" is a portrait of a man whose wife has died. The poem is the daily routine of a countryman who is depicted as still grieving for the loss of his wife, his sense of liveliness disappeared and the absence of feeling. The man's schedule is very ordered and quite tedious, no excitement in the menial tasks, he is almost robot-like as he trudges around the property labouring. The poem, written in iambic pentameter starts with a moving image of the man's bed that presumably was occupied by a wife before she passed away, this impression of the unmade bed makes the reader think about what was in the marriage. ...read more.


As the widower is gazing over the paddocks, delaying his duties, we notice that he has no direction in his life, there is an absence of force or being involved, this has been portrayed through "the windless trees". Then there is evidence of the slackness of the man, through "the nettles in the yard..." it shows us that he has jobs to do and the property is unkempt, the ellipsis exposes that there are probably more jobs that the widower has neglected to finish. In the second stanza, the narrator once again uses first person singular that emphasizes the fact that he is focused on himself and probably feeling self pity about is woeful self. ...read more.


In the last stanza, the man eats his dinner, where once he would've eaten with others, in the authority position "at the head of the table". The man's plain meal of "corned beef supper" illustrates the tedious life he leads, it symbolises the way he ploughs through life. Through the man's dream, we see the sub conscious view of him, as he wakes up screaming to himself, which he once again blames on something else, willing to push the blame away from him. Throughout Les Murray's poem, we see a man lost in self-pity whose daily routine consists of menial tasks that he may eventually do. The widower's absence in direction and life is illustrated by the "windless trees" and his inability to annunciate his emotion to the world, which would help him to recover his life. ...read more.

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Although there are some apt points made in this essay it is a very superficial response that needs to be further developed into a more substantial analytical essay.

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Marked by teacher Laura Gater 20/08/2013

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