Thomas Hardy Poems Notes

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The Voice – Thomas Hardy Analysis Notes:
€the Voice€ Analysis
In the poem The Voice by Thomas Hardy, the speaker of the poem hears what seems to be the voice of his dead wife, Emma. He remembers with nostalgia their time together before her death and in doing so three different moments of their lives is presented: the beginning of their relationship, the latest days of it, and the present. At the beginning, their relationship was based on love, whereas as time passed, the woman changed from the one he had fallen in love with and so a loss of love occurs, which is one of the poem\'s themes. The present consists of the time after the woman has died when the speaker hears her voice, looks back at their time together and expresses a feeling of grief, regret, guilt, and loneliness. The author establishes a contrast between these particular moments through the use of several different devices. To begin with, the first moment is mostly presented in the second stanza. Unlike the other two, this moment of the couple\'s life was positive, which is shown by the phrase when our day was fair€ on the first stanza. It implies that at one point of their relationship, at the earlier times, their days were good, due to the presence of love. On the second stanza, the voice remembers their days of courtship in which he would drive near to the town where the woman waited for him. As he implores the woman to appear to him in the same place and wearing the same attire, a sense of longing and loneliness is created. This attire is described through the vivid visual image original air-blue gown! By connecting the color blue to the color of the air, actually referring to the sky, a positive connotation is given to the memory of this first moment, emphasizing the fact that those days were full of joy and love. The existence of an exclamation in that phrase conveys a sense of excitement, related to their earliest days. In this stanza, the tone is hopeful and rigorous as the speaker believes he is hearing the voice of his dead wife. This is shown by the question "Can it be you that I hear?  Where he considers the possibility of actually being her whom he hears and thus gives him hope of not having lost her forever. The rhythm in this section is fast, as to emphasize Furthermore, the second moment is depicted in the first stanza. Here, the speaker conveys how much he misses his wife and mentions a time when she had changed from the one who was all to me. Thus, this second moment refers to the times where his wife had changed, we know from the author\'s life that she had begun being sick and had periods of insanity. This leads to a loss of love, which, as a negative moment, contrasts with the positiveness of the second stanza. However, in the stanza in particular he seems to hear the woman calling to him and telling him that she is no longer the woman she had become when they fell out of love, saying that now you are not as you were.” Hence, it is not as negative a stanza as the third and fourth. In the first line, the alliteration of the “m” sound on “Woman much missed” emphasizes how much he misses her as well as the meaning of the word missed. “Call to me” is repeated in this same line, having the effect of creating an echo. Thirdly, the present of the speaker, although mentioned all throughout the poem, is especially found in the third and fourth stanzas where the speaker is filled with doubt. In the first stanza, his present moment is when he misses her and she calls to him. In the second stanza, that moment is present in the previously mentioned question on the first line. In both of these stanzas, he is quite confident that what he hears is the voice of his dead wife. However, in the third stanza, the word “or” introduces an alternative, the possibility that was he is hearing is not his wife. Instead it is only “the breeze in its listleness.” Thus, both the speaker and the tone become doubtful. The whole stanza is a big...
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