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Death

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poem analysis

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Death

  1. 1. Felix okecki, Malena Millán, Clara Allende and Fran Costamagna.
  2. 2. Poem I am the one whose thought Is as the deed; I have no brother, and No father; years Have never seen my power begin. A chain Doth bind all things to me. In my hand, man,– Infinite thinker,–vanishes as doth The worm that he creates, as doth the moth That it creates, as doth the limb minute That stirs upon that moth. My being is Inborn with all things, and With all things doth expand. But fear me not; I am The hoary dust, the shut ear, the profound, The deep of night, When Nature’s universal heart doth cease To beat; communicating nothing; dark And tongueless, negative of all things. Yet Fear me not, man; I am the blood that flows Within thee,–I am change; and it is I Creates a joy within thee, when thou feel’st Manhood and new untried superior powers Rising before thee: I it is can make Old things give place To thy free race. All things are born for me. His father and his mother,–yet man hates Me foolishly. An easy spirit and a free lives on, But he who fears the ice doth stumble.Walk Straight onward peacefully,–I am a friend Will pass thee graciously: but grudge and weep And cark,–I’ll be a cold chain around thy neck Into the grave, each day a link drawn in, Until thy face shall be upon the turf, And the hair from thy crown Be blown like thistle-down. William Bell Scott (1811-1890)
  3. 3. INFO ABOUT THE WRITER AND CONTEXT William Bell Scott (12 September 1811 – 22 November 1890) He was a Scottish artist, poet and art teacher, he was especially close to Dante Gabriel Rossetti. He was one of the first British artists to extensively depict the processes of the Industrial Revolution. Death explains his virtues and why we shouldn’t live our lives in fear of him. His point is basically that death is an inescapable part of life, high and low, and that if we spend our lives trying to avoid or stave off death our efforts will mean that we avoid actually living our lives and ultimately death will catch up with all of us anyway.
  4. 4. Language Techniques Mini-Glossary hoary – a greyish white cark – an informal way of saying die, which seems to stem from the fact it sounds like the call of death’s winged friend, the crow; thistle-down – a weedy plant where the seeds can be blown off. The Semantic field is death. The whole poem is about death and how The poet personifies death as a powerful and eternal figure. ‘no brother, and no father’ meaning that death is unique and has no creator. It is so powerful that even time has no power over it. The writer describes the man as an ‘infinite thinker’ which suggests that we try to escape from death by thinking about other alternatives which could alter our faith. He seems to be mocking us.
  5. 5. Literary Devices ¨Deep of the night– With night already being dark on its own ,this phrase give us the image of death hiding behind the even darker shadows of night. ¨Man….vanishes as doth the worm that he creates– creates image of decaying body being fed on by worms yet even these worms will also experience death. He compares man to insects because not only they both die but also they are lowly beings. Scott uses a lot of metaphors to explain what he is (death) “I am the hoary dust, the shut ear, the profound, the deep of night,”
  6. 6. Intertextuality We compared “Death” to the poem “Care-charmer Sleep“ which also deals with the theme of death. The voice expresses how he wants to escape from the suffering of day time, he wants to sleep. He is looking for an everlasting sleep which is death. It is related to our poem because it expresses how death is eternal and also we could relate it because “Death” explains how dying frees us from life.
  7. 7. Essay question How does the writer portray death as inescapable throughout the poem?

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