Les Murray Poetry Essay

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From the volume of Australian volume of poems Taller than Prone, As Country was Slow, written by well known Australian poet Les Murray, conveys an extremely effective perspective on the concrete jungle our modern world has become. His use of emotive poetic techniques and didactic style enforces his powerful messages hidden beneath his emotive web of poetic devices. Written in 2010, the modern, relatable context of this poem based on the building of a new highway in Taree, helps to bring in the reality that with every step we take in the direction of urbanisation, brings us closer to the destruction of our world. Life in modern society is captured in Murray’s influential point of view through his personal language and opinions. “Plastic shrub guards grow bushes/ to screen the real bush,/to hide old towns/behind sound walls and green-“, this extended metaphor linked with enjambment is effective in revealing Murray’s perspective that the huge sound walls used on highways are just excuses to block out the dying world we are hiding from; to escape the harsh reality that we have caused ourselves. Growing up in a small, bush environment gave a preference for the peaceful rural life over the corrupting urban one, thus his strong views on the effects of environment destruction. This is reflected here, as well as all throughout the text. The poet’s personal perspective enforces his didactic style and helps to shape our understanding of our ever changing world, effectively giving us new ideas and thoughts to reflect on well after the poem is put down. Equally important to Murray’s personal and influential perspectives, is the emotive way he presents his ideas to form this narrative poem. Metaphors provide a leading role in his poems, providing a deeper understanding on what the poet is trying to convey. For example, “Our new motorway/ is a cross-country fort/ and we reinforcements/ speed between earthworks”, gives the reader a thorough indication that the poet is strongly...
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