26 Nov 2016

BA English Poetry

             Poet: W.H Davies
What is this life if full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?
No time to stand beneath the boughs                                 
And stare as long as sheep and cows.
No time to see when woods we pass
Where squirrel hide their nuts in grass.
No time to see in broad daylight
Streams full of stars,like skies at night.
No time to turn at Beauty s' glance
And watch her feet, how can they dance.
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.
A poor life if,full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

LEISURE William Davies Leisure” is a beautiful poem by William Davies. As the title of the poem suggests, it is about the availability of time for relishing various delights of life. The poet is lamenting over the rushed and hurried manners of the modern man. The modern man has no free time to enjoy the delights of nature..The poet feels that the life must be relished at any cost. The poem is a revolt against the hurried manners of the modern man. The modern man is a passing life full of material pursuits. .He is all the time running after the material pursuits. He is only making pots of money. He is so busy that he has totally ignored the beauties of nature all around him. He has never seen the squirrels hiding their nuts in the grass, the streams full of stars at the day time like sky in which stars twinkle at the night. The modern man is so busy that he never observes the smiling face of beautiful objects of nature. The objects of nature are smiling and dancing with full enthusiasm. Away from nature, the modern man s’ life has become a swirl of sorrows and tension. He is passing a difficult and full of sorrows life. If he wants to have peace and comforts in his life, he must have some spare time to enjoy the beauties of nature. Nature is the only thing which can give comforts to his life.


These lines have been taken from the poem, "Leisure" composed by W.H.Davies


In this poem the poet is of the view that the present age man is passing a very busy life and he has no time to enjoy the beauty of the nature .This is why his life is full of tensions and sorrows. The poet suggests that the modern man has some spare time to enjoy the beauty of nature in order to get real enjoyment in his life.


In the given lines the poet is of the view that the modern man is so busy in his or her life that he is totally ignorant of the beauties of nature and nature is offering all this free of cost. The poet has used  personification in the given lines. In personification , the poet endowers the qualities of animate to inanimate objects and things.


If I were lord of Tartary
Myself and me alone,
My bed should be of ivory,
Of beaten gold my throne,
And in my court should peacocks flaunt,
And in my forests tigers haunt,
And in my pools great fishes slant,
Their fins athwart the sun.

If I were lord of Tartary,

Trumpeters every day
To every meal would summon me,
And in my courtyard bray,
And in the evening lamps would shine,
Yellow as honey, red as wine,
While harp and flute and mandoline,
Made music sweet and gay.

If I wrere lord of Tartary,

I 'd wear a robe of beads,
White and gold, and green they 'd be-
And clustered thick as seeds,
And ere should wane the morning-star,
I 'd don my robe and scimitar,
And zebras seven should draw my car
Through Tartary dark glades.

Lord of the fruits of Tartary,

Her river silver pale!
Lord of the hills of Tartary,
Glen, thicket,wood, and dale!
Her flashing stars, her scented breeze
Her trembling lakes, like foamless seas,
Her bird-delighting citron trees,
In every purple vale.

 Walter De La Mare Walter De La Mare is known for his dream verses. He enjoys creating imaginary atmosphere. Tartary is dream poem in which the poet gives us a beautiful description of an imaginary land The poem is a journey into the realm of imagination. The poet imagines himself to be the lord of Tartary. There is a rich variety of exotic colors in the poem. The poet wants to be the sole ruler of the imaginative land Tartary. He wishes to have the bed made of elephant teeth. His throne would be of beaten gold and peacocks would be moving beautifully in his royal court. His forests would be full of tigers and his pools would be full of fishes of rare kind. Being the lord of that imaginative land, he would like to enjoy the music of his own choice and his place would always be ringing with sweet music. Being the lord of Tartary, he would wear a robe which would be beautifully decorated with beads of different colours. His car would be drawn by seven zebras. Being the absolute sovereign of Tartary, he would be the sole owner of everything there. He would enjoy the beauty of its rivers, hills, valleys, forests and thickets. He would enjoy the freshness of scented breeze. His lakes and seas would give him great pleasure. His birds would give him delights with their sweet melodies.


 Elizabeth Sewell This is a short sweet poem which tells us about the promises of the poetess made by her at the arrival of New Year. Generally the new year arrival is a time of merry making, dancing, drinking etc. It is also a tome of self-examination and for the preparation of the next year in a better way. In the poem the poetess is determined to celebrate the New Year away from traditional manners. At the arrival of the New Year she makes three promises to herself. This poem also tells us that the poetess had been a talkative lady and this habit of talking had contaminated her soul. She had totally forgotten of her origin that was why she had become somewhat proudy. In the past years, she had no courage to face the bitter realities of life. Now, at the arrival of the new tear, she makes three promises to herself. Her first promise to herself is that she would remain quiet most of the time and motive behind this promise is that she wants to purify her dead soul. May be she has leant, “Silence is gold. “Her second promise is that she would know of her life origin two times a day. By doing so , she would escape the vanity of life. He third promise is that she would face the bitter realities of life. She would lie in the bony arms of reality and would get comfort out of it. Reality is just like bitter pill, difficult to swallow but provide comfort in the long run The poem is short but message is deep one.


 Maya Angelou

 The poem, Woman Work" describes the dull and dismal experience of a common woman who is always busy in the household activities. The woman gives went to her disgust for the dull drab life of doing domestic chores like cooking, cleaning, washing etc. She has to attend the children. She has to clean the floors and she also has to buy food from the market. She has to cook the food for the members of her family. She has to look after her little babies. She has to keep the house tidy and to keep everything in order. She has also to look after her garden. She thanks as if she were not a normal human being but a machine. She has lost her identity. She wants re-assurance. She knows that nature can re-assure her and help her return to the normal life. This is why she requests to the elements of nature to help her .She wants to take refuge in the lap of the nature. She requests the sunshine to shine on her, rain to rain on her, snowflakes to fall gently on her. She becomes somewhat possessive about the objects of nature. She wants peace and comfort and nature is the only thing which can give her peace and comfort


 D.J. Enright
The Rebel" is a satirical poem by D.J. Enright. It is a poem full f ironic remarks and situations. It is semi humorous. The poem projects the contrasts in the personality of a rebel. This rebel goes against the norms and regulations of the society in order to be looked different. The poem bears a moral message that we should not behave stupidly to others like him. When there is a trend of having short hair in the society, the rebel lets his hair grow long. When the people are having long hair, the rebel grows his hair short. When wearing uniform clothes is the order of the day, the rebel wears colorful clothes or vice versa. When there is complete silence in the class, the rebel creates a disturbance. When students start questioning to the lecturer, the rebel does not say even a single word. In the company of dog lovers, he gives preference to the cats and in the company of cat’s lovers he puts good words for dogs. In the cold weather, when the people are greeting for sunshine, he prays for the rain and when the people great for rain, he regrets the absence of the sun. When people like to go out to attend a meeting, he stays at the home and reads some book or vice versa. When people asks for more, he says no thanks and when people say no thanks, he asks for more The poet very beautifully presents these contrasts in the personality of rebel. These contrasts produce humour for the reader.


 Robert Browning
This poem tells us that nothing is permanent in the world of politics. People may like some politicians now but may turn against him in the next moment. The poem is a beautiful dramatic monologue of Browning..The poem also furthers the idea that if a politician do nepotism, uses unfair means and misuses his power, he is washed away in the list of top ranking. The patriot turned into traitor is telling his story that how one year ago he was welcomed by the people when he came into the world of politics. People were ready to die for him. They were throwing flowers over him madly. They wanted see even a glimpse of their favourite hero .Banners and flags were pasted to welcome him. The people were ready to lay down their lives even on a slight signal given to them by the hero. They were ready to do impossible tasks for him. After one year the situation changes. And it all happens due to his follies and misdeeds. Now the public has tuned against him. There are ntot giving him a warm welcome. The irony of situation works. Now he is being tried under the treason charges. He is being taken to gallows where he is to be hanged as the result for his misdeeds. Now there is not a large gathering , only some sick people are there. People are showering stones over him as they hate him form the core of their heart. The final stanza of this sonnet tells us the optimism of the patriot turned into traitor. He is of the view that he has got the capital punishment as the reward for his misdeeds and in the next world God would favour him and would forgive him. So in this situation he is safer rather than safe.

 The Huntsman Edward

 Lowbury Edward
 Lowbury is a man of versatile personality. He usually writes the poems bearing some moral lessons. He remained in Kenya for two years. Basically , this poem is based on Kenyan folktale but with a moral message. The irony and suspense in the poem create a shocking impact. Kagwa was a hunter who used to hunt lions in the forest. One day , in the forest, he saw a skull of a man which talked t him. He asked the skull, “How did you come here?” The skull replied, “Talking brought me here.”Kagwa was a fool. He did not understand the message of the skull. He went to king palace and told the king about the talking scull. The king was a wise person. He said that he had never heard or seen a skull which could speak. He sent his two guards with kagwa to the forest to search the skull with that quality. He ordered the guards that they must kill Kagwa if they found no talking skull. They we net to the forest. For days and night, they found nothing. At last they saw the skull lying under a tree. Kagwa implored the skull how it had come in that situation. The skull was mum. As per the orders of the king, the guard killed Kaggwa with a sword. When they departed, the skull opened its mouth and said, “Huntsman, how did you come here?” The daed Kagwa answered, “Talking brought me here.”The hunter becomes hunted at the end of the peon.

 One Art

 Elizabeth Bishop
. The tone and attitude of the poetess in the poem is mocking not serious but the underlying message is serious. The true art of losing helps us inculcate a spirit of acceptance and resignation. The loss of door keys and the loss of an empire should be faced with a smiling face and a stout heart. In this way a defeat or disaster loses its bitterness and gives us hope and strength to look ahead. Life is fusion of success and failure, joy and sorrows, gain and loss etc. During the short span of life, one has to face some unexpected and sudden turns. Sometimes these turns add to our joy and sometimes to our sorrows. Failure and losses in life are numerous and consequently, sorrows dominate. Yet one has to hope for a better time. The poem is about the art of becoming expert of losing things. The poetess says that it is not at all difficult to become an expert of losing things. To be the master of losing things, we should lose something every day without feeling disturbed at the loss..The poetess lost herself her mother s’ watch and three loved houses where she had lived She also forgot two cities, some states, rivers and a continent. The loss of all this did not cause disturbance for her. She is not even bothered about the loss of love, dear vices and the gestures of love. She has mastered the art of losing and is, therefore, comfortable and does not feel any disturbance at losing anything.

 The Solitary Reaper

 William Wordsworth.
William Wordsworth is a famous poet of nature. He mostly writes about the Mother Nature. He seeks double pleasure in the objects of nature; first he observes nature physically, secondly by flashing back the memories of his experience. The Solitary Reaper”, is a delightful poem by Wordsworth..During his visit to Scotland, he came across a lovely maiden who was working all alone in the fields. She was singing and reaping the crops. The girl had become an object of nature for the poet. She was singing a sweet song in her native language. The poet was unable to understand the meanings of the song. But he was much impressed by the symphony of the song. The poet compared the voice of the girl to that of cuckoo bird, cooing at the islands of Hebrides, that of the chanting of nightingale, that of desert singer but he concluded that her voice was sweeter than all vices. The poet had a strong desire to know about the theme of the song. He tried to guess the theme of the song as it was being sung in a local dialect.The poet was much impressed by the song of that girl. The poet then went away and crossed into another valley. He could not hear the music physically but he was enjoying it in his imagination. He felt that his heart was full of the music of her song. Thus the poet suggests that nature gives him double pleasure. He enjoys it at the time when he is physically in contact with objects of nature and he enjoys them again when he recollects them in his imagination. Their beauty is stored in his imagination for ever which is a permanent source of joy for him.

 All The World ‘s A Stage

William Shakespeare
 William Shakespeare is the greatest dramatist and the poet. He usually writes dramatic tragedies. But every off and on , he writes poem. He himself was a good actor. So, in this poem, we find this touch. He has compared the world to a stage and men and women its actors and actresses. He divides the life span of a man into seven acts. A man comes on the stage of world and after performing his assigned roles he leaves the stage I , e dies. First of all he plays the role of an infant who is weeping and vomiting out milk in his nurses’ arms. After that, he becomes a school going child, who is going to school unwillingly with his bag. Then he becomes a lover who is sighing like a furnace and singing sad songs which he had composed in the praise of his beloved s’ eye- brow. At the fourth stage, he becomes a soldier, a practical man who quick in quarrel and is ready to die for the sake of bubble reputation. His fifth role is like that of a wise person with a fair round belly who quotes modern instances and proverbs in his talks. The sixth stage turns him into a leaned and slippered pantaloon old man heaving spectacles on his nose. His voice trembles when he speaks. At the seventh and last stage, he becomes too much old man. He develops a hobbit of forgetting things. He is without teeth, without eye-sight and sans taste. Now he is ready to leave the stage of the world.


William Blake
The poem, “A Poison Tree” is built up on several contrasts: friend, foe; love, hate; trust, deceit, etc. The language of the poem is simple yet the message of the poem is deep one. The poet talks about the nourishment of hatred. Hated is the outcome of mistrust, friends can forget and forgive but enemies nurse their grudges The poet gives a moral lesson by describing imaginary events.The poet was angry with his friend. He expressed his wrath to him and ultimately his angriness vanished. But once he was angry with his foe, he did not tell him about his angriness and as a result his angriness multiplied. The poet nursed this pant of hatred. He sunned it with fake smiles and watered it by his fears. The poet s’ hatred became a tree. At last it bore an apple on it. The foe thought that it was his friend s’ apple. So, one night he entered secretly into his garden and ate the apple which was full of poison. The poison worked and the foe died at once. In the next morning, the poet was very happy to see him lying dead under the apple tree. So, the feelings of hatred took the life of a person.


 Emily Dickinson
It is a mystic poem written by a mystic poetess Emily Dickinson. Her mostly poems bears the theme of death. Death is a gateway to the next world. Everyone believes that, Death conquers all”. It is a reality which cannot be denied. Death is definite; there is no escape from it. We may or may not remember but it comes definitely at its appointed time.We should not be afraid of it because it is not the end. It is the beginning of new life. The poem, Because I Could Not Stop for Death” also describes the same fact about death. The poetess talks about death and its gentle nature of its approach. Death is seen not an end but as the beginning of immortality. This poem also gives symbolic meanings. The children playing in the ground symbolizes childhood. The field of gazing grain symbolizes the youth and the setting sun presents the symbol of old age. Ultimately, her imagined funeral journey reached the grave. It seems as swelling of the ground. It is like a home whose roof is scarcely visible. It is the place where the poetess is to be buried. After death, in the next world, the concept of time and space vanishes. Many centuries elapses but to the poetess it feels shorter than a day. Now she has guessed that her journey of life is not towards death but it was a journey towards eternity. Throughout the poem, the poetess’ treatment too dash is very polite. The poem elaborates the theme of death.


 Edward Thomas.
Lights out “is a poem that views sleep from a very interesting angle. Sleep has a paramount power over all man s’ passionate interests and activities, his joys and sorrows. No one can withstand its lure. All day, from early morning men pursue various activities, good or bad but at night fall they completely relinquish the conscious hold upon life. They find themselves suddenly submerged by the oblivion of sleep. The dominance of sleep equalizes all men both who treaded the straight path and those who tread the crooked path of life. After reading the poem, a sense of gratitude is around for the blessing of sleep. Life is a ceaseless struggle. Man works from dawn to dusk and keeps himself busy in the various activities of life. He is, at times, successful, but miserably fails at the various occasions. He is usually exhausted by the day long struggle. The tensions of life work heavily on him. He is completely tired and worn out. At night, he abandons his work. When asleep, he is forgetful of everything, good or bad, happy or unhappy. Sleep works a tonic effect on him. In the morning, he is fresh, ready to share the activities of life once again. The poet pleads that the sleep is a great gift of God, a blessing on human beings.Sleep sooths and comforts us by making us forget everything for the time being.Same is the case of death. It saves us from all mad activities of life and its worries. The poem dwells on the power of sleep. Our routine activities, our desires and ambitions must give way to the hold that sleep has over us. Things that are most dearly cherished, as a favorite book or a loved face are willing relinquished as we find ourselves slipping gently into the blessed world of sleep. It has the equalizing effect. All are subject to its spell bound power, ---the rich, the poor, the virtuous or the vicious.


 R.S. Thomas
Thomas is a Welsh poet who was born in Wales in 1903.He got his early education at a local school and later on joined a seminary for becoming a priest In the poem, “The vanishing Village”, the poet laments over the rapid decline of the villages. It is said that the world is turning fast into a Global Village without villages. The unchecked, unabated large scale migration towards cities goes on worldwide. The poet does not like it. He believes in the theory of Plato that the village is the basic unit of the world. In the poem the poet has projected a gloomy picture of a village that is on its way to destruction. There are a few houses in the village. It has only one street that is leading nowhere and is eaten away by the tide of green grass. It means that the village is disconnected from the rest of the world..The village contains the population equal to none, so there is little activity in it. There is only one shop and one inn in the village. A black dog that is sitting in the hot sun and cracking its fleas is the only history. The concept of time and space is being vanished in the village. The girl moving from one door to another is a ray of hope. The poem is based on the Plato s’ theory that the village is the basic unit of this world. If one wants to save the world, one must save the village. Large scale immigration to the cities must be checked.
John Keats
John Keats was born in 1795 and died in 1821.He is one of the greatest English romantics poets. His early poem including ‘Endymion’ had to face severe criticism. His second volume appeared in 1820 and this contains his best work including the great ode. The sonnet, “ When I Fears “, is of great significance when we bear in mind the fact that Keats died at a very young age of twenty-six years old. The theme of the sonnets is the fears of the poet that he would die in a young age before the fulfillment of his poetic potent9ial.His first fear is that he may die soon. The poet was suffering from T.B and at that time it was a very fatal disease. So, his this fear came true when he died at the ripe age of twenty six. His second fear was that he will not become a famous poet in his life. The reality is totally in favor of this fear in the mind of the poet. When he started writing poetry, he had to face a severe criticism, so he was not able to get the expected fame. In case of his love he remained unsuccessful. He was in love with a beautiful woman but his love was one sided and unreflecting as that woman was in love with another fellow. Keats was a great lover of beauty. He was of the view, A thing of beauty is a joy forever,” But in his life span Keats did not relish the taste of beauty. Rejected from every sphere of life, he is standing alone on the shore of the world and is thinking that love and fame or nothing in this world

 Also Read All poems Context


 S.T. Coleridge
Coleridge is a world famous poet. Just as Keats shows his identity in beauty, Coleridge shows his identity in supernaturalism. His world famous poems, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” and “Christable” are the best examples of Coleridge s’ supernaturalism. In this poem, he speaks of the grandeur of Kubla Khan s’ palace. The poet takes the flight in his imagination and tries to build the palace as a rare device. The poem has been written under the influence of opium. Under the effect of this medicine he dreamed of the place of Kubla Khan a Mongol emperor In the poem the poet is not discussing about kubla khan but of his palace. Kubla khan ordered to build a palace in Xanadu where the sacred river Alph flowed. It was a site of superb beauty. It was a place as enchanted as a place that is haunted by a woman wailing for her demon lover. There was a romantic chasm which went obliquely down to the slope of green hill covered with cedarn trees. Out of this chasm, there gushed out a great fountain vaulting out stones with water. The river passed through the enchanted land for five miles before falling into the sea..The palace was built in the fertile ground of ten miles area. The reflection of the domes of the palace floated mid in the mid of the sacred river. Once the poet saw a maiden who was singing of mount Abora .She was an Abyssinian girl. The poet was much impressed by the symphony of her song. The poet desires to revive the song of that girl as with the help of that song he wants to rebuild the palace of Kubla Khan in his imagination. In the end , the poet has labeled Kubla khan as a supernatural character who forces the seers to close their eyes with holy dread as he has been fed with heavenly food.

Poem Snake by D.H Lawrence