The Darkling Thrush Poem

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The Power of Poetic Devices
Towards the end of the 19th Century, Thomas Hardy composed, "The Darkling Thrush" which illustrates how happiness can be found amid dismay and gloom if one still has hope. Poetic devices strongly emphasize the author's message regarding the bleak isolation of the world and how hope can still remain. Techniques involving the choice of diction, atmosphere, and the change of mood demonstrate Hardy's implication as shown in "The Darkling Thrush".

As the poem begins, the reader is stricken with ominous images, metaphors and a simile. A strong contrast used within a simile intensifies the underlying meaning portrayed by the author. Hardy's opening consists of a speaker leaning on a gate examining his surroundings as the old century draws to a close and a new one is about to emerge. The speaker comments by a simile that, "the tangled bine-stems scored the sky/Like strings from broken lyres". Strong distinctions of the stems being so twisted and warped immediately arouse the reader's visual imagery senses. The choice of the sinister diction allows for the comparison to stand out of its stanza, thus reinstating the importance of Hardy's atmosphere and mood. Not only can contrasts be used within similes to stress visual importance, but also the choice of comparison within a metaphor can strongly affect the reader's emotional response. The choice of comparing nature to a musical instrument was not by coincidence, but instead very intentional. When asked to describe nature, its connotation generally attributes to a peaceful and harmonic environment. Music as well is usually compared to a peaceful and relaxing repetition of notes. When Hardy compares the vines to broken lyre strings, nature's original cycle has been disrupted in the same way a song has been interrupted. Metaphors tied strong comparisons and also the use of alliteration can strengthen the mood of the poem. The simile used in the first stanza connotes strong...
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