Essay on My Papa 's Waltz By Theodore Roethke

Essay on My Papa 's Waltz By Theodore Roethke

Length: 1981 words (5.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Love is a very powerful force that it constantly being tested and tried. Through the power of devotion and commitment, it withstands many challenges. Love endures many types of situations as seen in the poems My Papa’s Waltz by Theodore Roethke, Living in Sin by Adrienne Rich, and Those Winter Sundays by Robert Hayden. In each of these poems a different situation arises and puts love to the ultimate test of survival.
A common problem in the world today is domestic abuse. Many times the male of a household abuses the woman and children that they life with. Although there are opportunities to safely get out of these situations, women too often stay. While this seems crazy that anyone would even think of staying in a situation of such violent nature, the reason is for more astonishing. Many times the women of these relationships love their abuser. An article written by a woman named Amanda Marcotte, tells of an interview with Janay Rice, a victim of domestic abuse. “They believe their abusers’ apologies. They believe they are the ones to blame for the abuse, which leaves them to believe they can prevent future incidents. They are so accustomed to catering to the abusers that they don’t have much room for concern about their own well-being.” In this excerpt readers are given insight on why women stay in these relationships. The overall reason being love. In My Papa’s Waltz, Theodore Roethke shares a story of a young boy being beaten by his father while the mother watches helplessly. In this case love is withstanding physical abuse. The boy clings to his father “But I cling on like death” (Roethke, 3), despite the beating described “You beat time on my head (Roethke 13). This, like many other occurrences is that of a family sticking b...


... middle of paper ...


... love drives people to do. It explains love as a powerful force that allows for endurance. In these poems, it is seen that despite mental, physical, and verbal abuse; despite the pain and trials that love brings; it is enduring and therefore does not weaken through these situations, but is proven to be strong in result to them.
Page Break

Bibliography:
Roethke, Theodore. "My Papa’s Waltz." Poetry Foundation. Poetry Foundation, 2016. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
Hayden, Robert. "Those Winter Sundays." Poets.org. Academy of American Poets, 2003. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
Rich, Adrienne. "Living in Sin." Twentieth-Century American Poetry (n.d.): 25. Poem Hunter. The Worlds Poetry Archive, 2010. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
Marcotte, Amanda. "Janay Rice’s ESPN Interview Sheds Light on Why Domestic Violence Victims Don’t Leave." Slate Magazine. TheSlateGroup, 01 Dec. 2014. Web. 19 Apr. 2016

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

My Papa's Waltz by Theodore Roethke Essay

- ... While the father and the son are playing around dancing they are also messing up the house as well. Messing up the kitchen will make any mother mad and that is what happens next. Of out any other place in the house the kitchen is the woman’s throne room. “The hand that held my wrist was battered on one knuckle; at every step you missed my right ear scraped a buckle (Roethke).” In lines 9-12 you can tell that the father has came back from a long day of work. The father’s job has to be doing something with his hands because of the battered knuckles....   [tags: poem review]

Strong Essays
572 words (1.6 pages)

Essay about My Papa's Waltz by Theodore Roethke

- ... This gives us yet another spin on our emotions. This pattern is repeated throughout this poem, and the waltz soon spins fast out of control to a point where we can only focus on the sequence of whirling emotion rather than coherent overall feelings. This leads to the positive and negative reading. On the positive note, it shows a hardworking father who returns from work and playfully dances with his son that he loves before taking him to bed. The whiskey on his breath is not necessarily negative due to the factors of the working class culture in 1948 when this poem was published....   [tags: poem analysis, drunken father]

Strong Essays
684 words (2 pages)

Analysis Of Theodore Roethke 's My Papa 's Waltz Essay

- When one becomes a father, he undertakes many responsibilities: setting a positive example, enforcing discipline for misbehavior, overviewing the safety of his children, providing a loving atmosphere, and numerous other tasks. In Theodore Roethke’s poem, “My Papa’s Waltz,” the narrator reminisces on the memories of his “papa” through the metaphor of an aggressive “waltz.” Using descriptions of the father’s actions and the reactions of the mother, Roethke illustrates the situation with carefully selected vocabulary....   [tags: Father, Mother, Theodore Roethke, Responsibility]

Strong Essays
719 words (2.1 pages)

Essay about My Papa 's Waltz By Theodore Roethke

- In his poem, “My Papa’s Waltz,” Theodore Roethke, an award-winning and critically acclaimed poet, emphasizes the strong bond between a father and his son by describing a drunken father dancing in the kitchen with his young son. Unfortunately, when Roethke was only fourteen, his father passed away from cancer and his uncle committed suicide. Although these events are tragic, they impacted Roethke deeply and influenced his works, especially “My Papa’s Waltz” (CITE). Through his use of diction, style, and imagery in “My Papa’s Waltz,” Roethke effectively supports the theme of a child’s admiration for his parents....   [tags: Poetry, Rhyme, Rhyme scheme, Poetic form]

Strong Essays
1223 words (3.5 pages)

Analysis Of ' My Papa 's Waltz ' By Theodore Roethke Essay

- “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke can be interpreted in a few different ways. The most obvious one being that he was dancing around with his father, having so much fun that he did not want to stop. His father is very drunk though, which leads us to believe that it is no just a fun story of him and his father dancing one night. What Roethke is really trying to show us, is the abusive relationship he had with his father. One of the ways Roethke has described the abusive relationship is through the use of verbs....   [tags: Abuse, Bullying, Psychological manipulation]

Strong Essays
759 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on My Papa 's Waltz By Theodore Roethke

- Love is a very powerful force that it constantly being tested and tried. Through the power of devotion and commitment, it withstands many challenges. Love endures many types of situations as seen in the poems My Papa’s Waltz by Theodore Roethke, Living in Sin by Adrienne Rich, and Those Winter Sundays by Robert Hayden. In each of these poems a different situation arises and puts love to the ultimate test of survival. A common problem in the world today is domestic abuse. Many times the male of a household abuses the woman and children that they life with....   [tags: Abuse, Child abuse, Psychological abuse, Bullying]

Strong Essays
1981 words (5.7 pages)

Essay on My Papa 's Waltz By Theodore Roethke

- The poem, My Papa’s Waltz, by Theodore Roethke surrounds the relationship between a father and child as they spend time together before bed by dancing. Roethke references the waltz with clever wordplay and symbolism surrounding time, rhythm and beats. In addition, he sets the poem to a ¾ time, the same beat as a traditional waltz. In the poem, the narrator’s viewpoint is that of a small child who shows endearment for his father by clinging to him despite his own physical discomfort and the disapproval of his mother....   [tags: Metropolitana di Napoli, Osaka Municipal Subway]

Strong Essays
736 words (2.1 pages)

My Papa's Waltz by Theodore Roethke Essay

- My Papa's Waltz by Theodore Roethke Throughout the poem, "My Papa's Waltz" by Theodore Roethke, many techniques are used to show that there are furious conflicts between a father and his son. Roethke uses the word waltz in the title to relate to the beating of the son. I believe that the poem is altogether a negative poem, as described by the words and phrases the author uses. To begin, the author immediately states that the father is a drunk. Roethke says, "The whiskey on your breath / Could make a small boy dizzy"....   [tags: Free Example Essays]

Free Essays
413 words (1.2 pages)

Essay about "My Papa's Waltz" by Theodore Roethke

- In the poem "My Papa's Waltz" by Theodore Roethke, the speaker is reflecting on a childhood experience involving his father. Through diction and details, the speaker conveys his complex attitudes toward his father. When first read it, it appears the young boy is afraid of his father. The first line of the poem writes: "The whiskey on your breath; could make a small boy dizzy." Apparently, the father likes whisky and the smell of it is remaining on his person, which causes the young boy's aversion....   [tags: Poetry]

Strong Essays
502 words (1.4 pages)

Childhood Memories in My Papa's Waltz by Theodore Roethke and Piano by D.H. Lawrence

- Childhood Memories in "My Papa's Waltz" by Theodore Roethke and "Piano" by D.H. Lawrence "My Papa's Waltz" by Theodore Roethke and "Piano" by D.H. Lawrence are two poems in which grown men recall memories of their childhood. "My Papa's Waltz" has a quietly sad, almost resigned tone as Roethke relives his nightly dances with his father as a young boy. Lawrence's "Piano" is somewhat dreamy as a man is taken back by a song to his childhood. While both are presented to us through similar personas, striking differences are apparent throughout the two poems....   [tags: Compare Waltz Piano Essays Papers]

Strong Essays
623 words (1.8 pages)