Stop All the Clocks by W.H. Auden

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Stop All the Clocks by W.H. Auden Works Cited Missing Wystan Hugh (formally known as W.H) Auden was born in York, England, in 1907. Influenced by the work of Emily Dikinson, Robert Frost and some other poets, he published his first book of verse in 1928. Ever since, he has been recognized and admired for his incomparable technicality and his ability to write verses in many different forms. "Stop all the clocks" is one of Auden's most prominent poems; this lyrical ambiguity is what I will be depicting throughout this commentary. At first, when I read the title "Stop all the clocks", I was quite confused at what it could mean. I knew that it had to be figurative in some way since it didn't make any sense otherwise. I did not realize, until later, that I was quite wrong. It was not only the way the poem commenced, but it mostly portrayed the standstill of time in a slightly blunt way. The poem is actually about the death of a loved one, and the emotion of the person's lover (who is the speaker). I did not know this, however, until I had read the poem completely. Before I began to analyze this poem, I decided to first dissect the rhyme scheme. It was one of the most simple and basic rhyme schemes I had ever come across, being "a / a / b / b / c / c / d / d / e / e / f / f / g / g / h / h". I decided that there was nothing spectacular about this, except that later I found it added a dull rhythmic emphasis, or a sense of atmospheric gloominess. Once I had gotten that out of the way, I began to analyze the first stanza. As I mentioned,... ... middle of paper ... ...and moon away like it were a simple act. The whole poem in general gives the reader (me) a very sorrowful feel. I felt very empathetic to the sufferer as he/she seemed to love the person very much. Something else that irritated me while writing this commentary after reading the poem is the question "Is the speaker a he or a she?" By line 6, we know that the dead lover is male. Normally by this, one would assume that the speaker would be female (a mistake that I made in the beginning). However, doing some background research on the author, Auden, I discovered that he was bisexual. This actually made me wonder whether the speaker could be a he. Thus, the mystery still remains. Although this poem seemed quite simple and straightforward to me, I found out that it is quite inexplicit as well in its own mysterious way.
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