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An Analysis of To Waken an Old Lady

  • Submitted by: gbpawned
  • on December 6, 2008
  • Category: English
  • Length: 384 words

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Below is a free excerpt of "An Analysis of To Waken an Old Lady" from Anti Essays, your source for free research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

The focus of “To Waken an Old Lady” by William Carlos Williams is old age. In this poem, William portrays how old age is like a flight of small cheeping birds which are vibrant and energetic despite their harsh surroundings. Metaphors are used to convey this message in the poem.
There are six metaphors that relate old age to small cheeping birds which are vibrant and energetic despite their harsh surroundings. The first metaphor in “To Waken an Old Lady” is “a flight of small/cheeping birds.” This conveys a message of happiness. We think of happy summer days when we think of small cheeping birds, and we think of gracefulness and happiness when we think of old people. The second metaphor in “To Waken an Old Lady” is “bare trees/above a snow glaze.” This metaphor conveys a message of death. Just as the bare trees are near the cold snow, old people are near death. The third metaphor in “To Waken an Old Lady” is “buffeted/by a dark wind.” The metaphor shows how old age encounters health problems. Just as birds are buffeted by a wind, old people are buffeted by disease and weakness. The fourth metaphor in “To Waken an Old Lady” is “on harsh weedstalks/the flock has rested.”   This message portrays how old people feel uneasy when they rest. Just as the flock rests on harsh weedstalks, old people feel uneasy when they rest.   The fifth metaphor in “To Waken an Old Lady” is “broken seedhusks.” The message is portraying how old age leads to the deterioration of bodies. Just as seedhusks deteriorate over time, people’s bodies deteriorate as they approach old age.
The sixth metaphor in “To Waken an Old Lady” is “and the wind tempered/by a shrill/piping of plenty.” This message shows how old people encounter problems. Just as wind is tempered by the shrill piping of birds, old people are tempered by problems only caused by old age.
William Carlos Williams successfully related old age to small cheeping birds which are vibrant and energetic despite their harsh surroundings...

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