Poem Interpretation (Seven Poems)

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In the poem “To His Coy Mistress” the tone of the speaker goes through many different transitions throughout the poem. The poem begins at first to be romantic because he speaks of how his love for his mistress could endure time, ‘My vegetable love should grow Vaster than empires, and slower’. So from the first read of the poem, the reader might say that the tone of the poem is about love but from there it changes. The speaker then, later on, shows a type of urgency by pretty much telling the mistress that time maybe will catch up with them and their love will not be forever. So they must make love happen right now. Towards the end of the poem, you can see another transition that leads to suspicion of the speaker’s real desire regarding his lover and confusion as to the nature of the poem. So, in all the poem begins with a tone of romance and urgency but concludes with violent lust. I also believe that the audience of the poem is people who experience this type of relation to the mistress in the poem.

My interpretation of the poem ‘Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers’ by Adrienne Rich is about a deep message that involves the narrator(Aunt Jennifer) describing being in a very abusive or controlling relationship where she is scared and terrified of the fact that her husband (the Uncle) is watching her every move. Its kinda like the narrator has been trapped in fear for a long time in her life because she is being dominated by the husband. So, since tigers are fierce and courageous, the author wishes to become one of them because of the bravery and the tendencies that a tiger has. The word choice is what gathers my attention to what is going on in Aunt Jennifer’s life. In the line where the author says “the massive weight of Uncle’s wedding band, Sits heavily upon Aunt Jennifer’s hand.” has me to believe that she is trapped in a relationship that she does not want to be in. Just reading the poem you can pick out some of the words that she is explaining and visualize the feeling that she is feeling. Overall, a very interesting poem to read and try to interpret.

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In the other poem ‘We Real Cool’ by Gwendolyn Brooks the first thing I noticed was that the poem was very easy to read because the word choice is very simple and easy to follow through. After reading the first few lines, I got the idea that this poem is about a group of teenagers who thinks they are too cool for school and just leave to have fun and do things like drink alcohol. They then do this event regularly until it ends with there death. I believe the poem tries to show the cause and effect of leaving school to do bad things that could lead to death. In other words, the poem is saying that if you are not going to get an education and just live a life of partying and drinking, then its better to just be dead. An overall very good poem to read and think about what it is trying to tell you. I also like how this poem gives you multiple ways to interpret.

The three poems are in no doubt about war and fighting for one’s country. They all give different outlooks on war and also tell what war is like in different ways and perspectives. The poem that gained my attention through its emotions and outlook on war was ‘Dulce et Decorum Est.’

The poem ‘Dulce et Decorum Est.’ by Wilfred Owen is in a soldier’s perspective on war and what he has been through and seen throughout his days of fighting. This is the poem that caught my most attention because it was the emotion and imagery of what war was like. The soldier’s perspective about the war was a lot of physical pain and the death of many people. The theme of this poem is death and horrors of soldiers in WW1 which is best described when the solider says ‘And watch the white eyes writhing in his face, His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;’

The poem ‘The Charge of the Light Brigade’ by Alfred Lord Tennyson is in perspective of a person that thinks that war is an honoured sacrifice for what you fight for. In the poem, 600 men are charging into war knowing what may happen to them when they do. After the war, the 600 men died but the whole world knows what they did and honour their deaths. The theme of this poem is to fight with honour and have the courage to charge first.

The poem ‘If We Must Die’ by Claude McKay is in perspective of a group of soldiers that know they are going to die but is going to make their death worth it. They don’t want to die as cowards so they will fight till they drop and make their deaths an honourable one. The theme of this poem is to always fight at 100% even when you know the outcome.

All three of these poems showed what war is like in three different perspectives. We have seen how war put physical pain and horrifying deaths on the soldiers but we also have seen that deaths of these soldiers are honoured for their bravery and courageous spirit to fight. In all, all the poems show some relation to what war is and showed the bravery to give their lives for what they fought for.

For the poem ‘The Road Not Taken’ by Robert Frost, I believe that the poem’s theme is the choices of life. In the poem, Frost talks about the two roads that split in the forest and he is trying to see which path to take. The path that Frost was talking about was the theme which was the choice of life because we tend to make decisions before either looking more into or not looking at all and in result, could affect the future. What Frost says about the bend in the road, ‘To where it bends in the undergrowth’, he uses that as a metaphor to say how he cant see where the road goes because of the undergrowth, so he decides to take the other road instead, even with him not knowing where the road would lead him to.


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