Caged Bird

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How do we know which season the poet describes? A. The season is spring, seen in the springing grass, first bird, first bud. Note the simile here, which helps us picture the pastoral scene which the bird so desperately wishes to join. What figure of speech describes the flower? A. The poet refers to the fragrance of a flower as it opens. He uses a metaphor to compare the flower to a goblet. What type of figurative language is used here? A. The poet uses personification, “cruel bars,” attributing human qualities or emotions to an inanimate object, to intensify the sense of unjust imprisonment. How do we know which season the poet describes?

Sympathy
Paul Laurence Dunbar
FOCUS: METAPHOR
I know what the caged bird feels, alas! When the sun is bright on the upland slopes; When the wind stirs soft through the springing grass And the river flows like a stream of glass; When the first bird sings and the first bud opes,* And the faint perfume from its chalice* steals — I know what the caged bird feels! I know why the caged bird beats his wing Till its blood is red on the cruel bars; For he must fly back to his perch and cling When he fain* would be on the bough* a-swing; And a pain still throbs in the old, old scars And they pulse again with a keener* sting — I know why he beats his wing! I know why the caged bird sings, ah me, When his wing is bruised and his bosom sore, — When he beats his bars and would be free; It is not a carol of joy or glee, But a prayer that he sends from his heart’s deep core, But a plea, that upward to Heaven he flings — I know why the caged bird sings!

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What figure of speech describes the flower?

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What type of figurative language is used here?

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ELPFUL Ω EFINITIONS µ

opes — opens. chalice — an ornamental goblet. fain — rather. bough — tree limb. keener — here, sharper.

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IMPLICATIONS OF LITERATURE / UNIT TWO

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IMPLICATIONS OF LITERATURE / UNIT TWO

BC

LITERARY CRITIQUE

BC...
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