Death Is A Common Human Experience That We Can Not Escape Essay

Death Is A Common Human Experience That We Can Not Escape Essay

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Coming to terms with the death of a person important in your life, whether you knew him or her personally or not, can be extremely difficult. It is hard to put your feelings into words and adequately express the pain and darkness you are experiencing. On August 31, 1997, Princess Diana passed away, on June 29, 2009, Michael Jackson, the King of Pop, died - on these days the entire world for them. The world experienced the pain it is to lose someone in your life without even knowing these people personally. An estimated average of 1.80 people die per second. Hundreds of spouses, siblings, and friends that we know personally die every hour (http://www.medindia.net/patients/calculators/world-death-clock.asp). Death is a common human experience that we cannot escape. Wystan Hugh Auden clearly displays this commonly felt struggle in his poem, “In Memory of W. B. Yeats.” The poem is written in three distinct sections, that I consider being three separate attempts of writing three distinct elegies to remember William Yeats by. In this essay, I will unfold how Auden uses his poem as a coping mechanism to deal with the death of such an idolize poet and analyze how the formal differences between the three distinct sections enhance the meaning. Each section represents a different way in which people mourn, since we all grieve differently.
Poets can choose to use all sorts of technical forms and devices, or he or she can make the risky decision to omit these techniques all together. These forms exist for a reason, to create structure, lyricism, and formality – to name a few. By using these techniques, a poet is separating his or her writing from everyday writing, such as a review or short story. However, choosing to neglect these devices sep...


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..., is the most important in the entire poem. It expresses in just four short lines Yeats’ importance and indirect influence on the world around him. It is extremely common in poetry for a poet to make a reference, however big or small, to The Bible. It is no wonder Auden includes an allusion within his final, and most formal, section. “In the deserts of the heart / Let the healing fountain start,” is a reference to the book of Genesis, where the fountain symbolizes Gd, and is the center of spiritual joy, spreading to subordinate places (CITATION). Within this final stanza, Yeats is compared to the fountain, as being a source of spiritual joy to prospective writers and his hundreds of readers. Many, including Auden in my opinion, could argue that Yeats was, and continues to be, the Gd of poetry, creating countless works of literature that teaches and inspires people.

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