Who were the Supremes? Why is the title so crucial for this poem?
The Supremes in the poem refer to the children with great expectations of the future and how they plan it out from their own imaginations. Though little and young, the children have big dreams of how successful they will be to the point of seeing themselves as Supremes already. This title is crucial for this poem as it brings out clearly the irony and satire that the writer hopes to achieve. Right from the start, the topic is one that shows criticism to the society that limits its members especially the children.
Explain how the meanings and mood of this poem would change if it ended with line 25.
The mood would be a sad one; of people in despair and shattered dreams. No one dreams of a normal, dull life but most times thats how it plays out. The promise of a better tomorrow is what everyone holds on to; almost too much that it does not give allowance to doubts and failures. Therefore, when it turns out to be negative; everyone is suddenly disappointed and frustrated with life.
How does the speaker's recollection of school experiences compare with your own?
My school experiences are almost like the speakers in the sense that there are some things I learnt that I can describe as irrelevant since I never get to apply them in real life. To some extent, just like the speaker, some things were a pure waste of time.
Marvell Noir and To His Coy Mistress poems:
Compare the speaker's voice in this poem "Marvell Noir" with that of the speaker in "To His Coy Mistress" (p. 601). What significant similarities and differences do you find?
The two poems are great pieces of art with a common topic; love. Both of them are directed to ladies by their male lovers. In both, the ladies have clearly won the hearts of the males and they would do anything to win and retain their attention. However, in both poems time is an important element in that the ladies think there is too much of it and therefore, wastes it on coyness and letting things play out slowly.
The big difference comes in whereby whereas in Marvell Noir, the speakers voice is one of a guy advising his lady to let things be while cautious of time, in To His Coy Mistress, the speaker is out rightly seducing the lady to sleep with him. His ultimate goal is to make love to his lady because he cannot wait any more. The concept of love is overshadowed by sex unlike in Marvell Noir where the speaker put emphasis on love and is afraid of losing the feeling as a result of passing time.
Safe in Their Alabaster Chambers poems (1859 and 1861 versions)
Dickinson permitted the 1859 version of this poem, entitled "The Sleeping," to be printed in the Springfield Republican. The second version she sent privately to Thomas Wentworth Higginson. Why do you suppose she would agree to publish the first but not the second version?
According to my opinion, the first poem was a general idea and she allowed it to be published because it was not specified to anyone in particular. However, the second version was a modification of the first only that it was custom made for Thomas Wentworth Higginson. The language used in the first is also shallow and direct as compared to the second version.
Are there any significant changes in the first stanzas of the two versions? If you answered yes, explain the significance of the changes.
Yes. In the first version the word sleep is used which is replaced by lie in the second version. Sleep is more permanent as compared to lie which could mean a temporary rest.
Describe the different kinds images used in the two second stanzas. How of do those images affect the tones and meanings of those stanzas?
The imagery used in the second stanzas is used to depict death and life after death. For instance the firmament as used in the poem refers to Heaven which is the dwelling place of God. It shows an everlasting and sacred place where the dead are safe and away from any sin and evil.
Discuss why you prefer one version of the poem to the other.
I prefer the second version because it is more figurative and the imagery used there relates with the first stanza; Christianity and life after death.
Not marble, nor the gilded monuments poem:
Compare the theme of this poem "Not marble, nor the gilded monuments" with that of Andrew Marvell's "To His Coy Mistress" (p. 601), paying particular attention to the speaker's beliefs about how time affects love.
Unlike Andrew Marvell who believes that time affects love negatively and that one should maximize the moment while it lasts, Shakespeare believes that time is a measure of love and when it is real, love should stand the test of time.
Discuss whether you find this love poem more or less appealing the Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love" (p. 954). As you make this comparison, explain what the criteria for an appealing love poem should be.
I find Shakespeare poem more appealing because he believes that love conquers all. We all know powerful marble and gilded mountains are but according to Shakespeare, they cannot compare to love. This is very soothing and encouraging since such kind of love is true and rare to find especially in todays world.
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