Analysis Of This Is What I Ll Remember By Gabeba Baderoon
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The poem “This is what I’ll remember” by Gabeba Baderoon is a poem written from protest to post-apartheid era. It is a poem reflecting the poet’s contemplation of the memory of her relationship with her mother up until the point in time of her mother’s death. In this essay I will first discuss how Gabeba Baderoon explores the idea of memory throughout the poem, I will secondly discuss how she also reflects on the way in which we make sense of significant events in our lives, lastly I will discuss the significance of the poets relationship with her mother in relation to the exploration of memory and significant events in our lives.
The poem begins with an unclear title “This is what I’ll remember”, unclear in the sense that the term “this” as used in the title is not made clear to the reader as to what it is referred to. The exploration thus begins in the first line of the first stanza of the poem in which the imagery of “mist” (Baderoon, in Carolin 2014:l.1) “in the park” (Baderoon, in Carolin 2014:l.1) is used to introduce the uncertainty or rather not so clear but present memory that “brings slow clarity” (Baderoon, in Carolin 2014:l.2) of the memory the poet is trying to remember. As the poets memory is constructed, she begins to remember the things that have never changed and continues to cherish and celebrate like a memorialisation of a “statue” (Baderoon, in Carolin 2014:l.5) as a symbol of a memory forever commemorated and the poet reflects on those memories of the events of her life that were given “the open spaces…” to change over time. Memory is also explored by the poet through season change when “the trees show the last of their colour” (Baderoon, in Carolin 2014:ll.7-8) she sees herself get older and her life and tho...
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...on time” (Baderoon, in Carolin 2014:ll.41-42). This last line of the poem suggests that the mother eventually passed away.
In conclusion “ This is what I’ll remember “ by Gabeba Baderoon explores the idea of memory and as well as reflects on the way in which we make sense of the way in which we make sense of significant events in our lives. The poet makes use of various poetic devices throughout the poem such as imagery and symbolism to reflect on the above mentioned. The moral lesson of this poem is that at the end of the day as much as we may feel that memories fade away there will always be someone or something to remind you of the past. Time is not always on our side so as human beings we should learn how to appreciate every moment we have because as much as we may think we have time, it remains one factor in our journey of life that is not promised to anyone.