Comparitive Essay

Topics: Poetry, Old age, Gerontology, Middle age, Rhyme / Pages: 6 (1411 words) / Published: Sep 20th, 2010
Comparative Essay

Write a comparative analysis of ‘An old man’s winter night’ by Robert Frost and ‘Lore’ by R.S. Thomas. Highlight each poet’s distinct attitude towards old age. Comment on the style through which the poets express how they feel about old age.

Both Frost and Thomas draw upon the theme of old age in their poems. However in ‘Lore’ the theme of old age is portrayed as a positive thing and the persona defies the stereotype. Whereas in ‘An old man’s winter night’ we are presented with the stereotype about old age and old age is portrayed in a more negative light.
In today’s society old age is often seen as a negative thing. Old people are being made to feel useless as they lose there independence. However some of them defy this stereotype and are still doing everyday activities with ease. ‘Lore’ and ‘An old man’s winter night’ are relevant to us because they are about old age and how it is both positive and negative. In the poem ‘Lore’ Job Davies is still farming and enjoying life even though he’s eighty-five. “Job Davies, eighty-five/Winters old, and still alive” Whereas in ‘An old man’s winter night’ the old man is conveyed as frail, scared and he obviously feels useless to society which follows the natural stereotype of old age.
Frost and Thomas both appreciate the beauty and harshness of nature to a certain extent. They both realise that it can be mans worst enemy. Frost draws on the typical stereotype of old age and often used physical isolation to reflect mans emotional isolation. Whereas, Thomas who was an Anglican clergyman worked with elderly people and he goes against the typical stereotype. He had an understanding of old people’s hopes and fears. He incorporated that into his poems. The biggest difference is that Thomas views nature as a rejuvenating source for humans if they embrace it.
Nature plays a part in both of the poems.

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