“The Past” “The Past” by Oodgeroo portrays both the author’s resentment for the mistreatment of aboriginals in the past and also depicts her desires. Oodgeroo Conical her aboriginal name also knows as Kathleen Jean Mary Ruska was the first Aborigine women to have her works published in which she used to promote aboriginal rights. Oodgeroo’s has a variety of poems which all are very direct, uses accessible rhyme schemes and allusion. Poems such as “Dark unmarried mothers, “Time is running out” and “The dawn is at hand” corresponds well to this poem. On other hand, “Let us not be bitter” has a large contrast between “The Past” but is thematically linked. Oodgeroo has used effective language devices such as imagery, metaphors, figurative language, personification and many more to aid the reader to understand the deeper meaning of this poem. Oodgeroo starts off expressing her resentment for the past and manifests its significance and its effects upon her. The poet illustrates the surrounding of suburbia which is then juxtaposed by the poet’s discussion of her dream.
Oodgeroo’s polemic argument on the fact that she will never forget the mistreatment of not only towards herself but also to the whole aboriginal race by white people is created through her use of language devices, which builds the negative tone. In line “Let no one say the past is dead” (1) the words “no one” acts as an absolute. Personification is used in the line when death, a human quality is given to a non human thing such as the past. Also the word “dead” has connotations of the deceased and gone. These devices provides the reader the impression of bitterness the author has regarding to the past.
In lines “Let no one say the past is dead” (1) and “Let none tell me the past is wholly gone” (25) there is repetitions of the words “let” and “The Past” but more so the connotative meaning of both lines are very much the same. In line 25, the word “none” acts as the absolute and the word” wholly” which