Task 1 Compare and Contrast Poems by Issa and Paul Muldoon
I intend to demonstrate that both poems largely follow the rules of haiku. However, they achieve their effects by using different techniques. Despite the fact that the contexts of the two poems set them apart, both poems can be thought of as having similar meanings.
Baugh et al (2006 p57 to p60) give 9 rules of haiku, which I shall use to compare the two poems. I shall then use the study diamond to comment on the effects the poems have on me, the techniques used, the contexts of the two poems and their meanings.
Muldoon’s poem has seventeen syllables whereas Issa’s contains only twelve. Both poems are of three lines, but only Muldoon’s has the 5-7-5 haiku format. Issa’s poem is 3-5-4, and is a translation from the original Japanese in which it may have had a different number of syllables.
Both poems have a change of pace at the end of the first line. In Issa’s poem, this is indicated by a colon, in Muldoon’s by a comma. According to the rules of Baugh et al, this normally takes place at the end of the second line
Baugh et al (2006 p47) describe the techniques of imagery and metaphor. Haiku normally contain two or three simple images. Muldoon's poem contains two images, the snowball, with a stone at its core, and the porcelain knob on the metaphorical winter’s door. Issa’s poem contains the images of melting snow, a village and children falling. The first parts of
both poems, melting snow, the snowball and porcelain doorknob are clearly observations of actual events or artefacts.
In Issa’s poem the transition from the image of melting snow to that of children falling on the village is abrupt and jarring. In Muldoon’s poem, the transition is smoo...
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...y main weakness is that I am rather unsure when it comes to referencing. I either want to quote chapter and verse, which uses up too much of the word count, or skimp, which is economical on words but may not fulfil academic requirements. I do not seem to be able to find a happy medium.
Studying other academic essays and becoming more focused in what I put into an essay and what I leave out should improve my ability to produce a balanced essay, which adequately covers its subject matter and includes all the necessary references.
Baugh, T., Brickley, P. and Perryman, L.A. (2006) Making Sense of the Arts, Milton Keynes, The Open University.
The Concise Oxford Dictionary of literary terms (Chris Baldick, OUP, 2004)
Microsoft ® Encarta ® Reference Library 2005. © 1993-2004 Microsoft Corporation
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