Once Upon a Time

Topics: Metropolitana di Napoli Pages: 2 (796 words) Published: December 1, 2012
In the poem “Once Upon a Time,” by Gabriel Okara, the persona is reflecting on the behavioral patterns of people in the present and the past hence using ‘once upon a time’ as the first line suggesting this was a long time ago. He then begins to compare the differences between how he acted as a child and how much that has changed now that he is an adult and a father .This poem is about a man growing up and losing the innocence he once had as a child. While in the poem “Forgive my Guilt,” by Robert Coffin, the persona committed an awful thing. As a boy he loved to shoot birds but it came to pass that one day he started to realize that the things he had done were “sins” line 1 captures this “not always sure what things called sins maybe”. In the poem he starts to recall the moment in which he killed the two birds the poet uses the imagery in line 4 and line 8 to capture this 4“I lay in the frost flowers with a gun”, “8my gun went off they ran with broken wings”. The persona in “once upon a time,” feels as if he has adapted all too well to the hypocrisy of the world using lines 20-24 “I have learned to wear many faces like dresses- home face, office face, street face, host face, cocktail face, with all their conforming smiles like a fixed portrait smile”, he uses the word conforming suggesting this is a permanent feature for example the face of a politicians wife, the persona has mastered the art of being a hypocrite. The persona desperately wants to change, he expresses his desires in lines 34-36 says “I want to be what I used to be when I was like you, I want to unlearn all these muting things”, this suggests that he wants to be like who he was when he was a child, before he was brought in to learning the muting like things of the world, he wants to go back to being hospitable, genuine, true, sincere etc. While the boy in the poem “Forgive my Guilt,” is eager to kill without knowing the consequences, now a man he is haunted by his past actions no matter how...
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