Darkling Thrush Essay

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Q. Referring closely to two poems, discuss the poetic methods Hardy uses to evoke distinctive settings in his poetry. In the 19th century, Hardy lived in an industrializing patriarchal world and this might inspired Hardy in “The Darkling Thrush” where he oppose the fact that human is using nature till it’s dead and in “The Ruined Maid” where he ironically criticize the Victorian era where women were powerless . Hardy’s “The Darkling Thrush” and “The Ruined Maid” are obviously contrasting each other in terms of tone and mood. However, Hardy effectively used poetic methods such as figurative language, rhetorical devices and evocative diction to suggest distinguishing settings in both “The Darkling Thrush” and “The Ruined Maid”. A dark and gloomy setting in “The Darkling Thrush” while a lively town in “The Ruined Maid”. In “the darkling Thrush”, the first stanza establishes, through a natural setting, that a significant time (the end of day at the end of the year) is being recollected and retold by a looker standing at a physical boundary. Hardy “leant upon a coppice gate” which implies that there is a boundary within the place where he is and the other side. “And all mankind…. Their household fires” confirms that he’s outside while everyone else is inside. The presence of frost tells the readers that it is winter, and the adjective “spectre-grey” suggests a lifeless landscape. The use of eye as an image of sun in the line “The weakening eye of day” shows that it’s twilight and the light from the sun is fading. The scene has only the barest traces of life, in which natural and human presences are ghostly. This idea is made more alive by Hardy through his diction choice and the use of similes. He used words like “spectre-grey” and “desolate” and also the simile “The tangled bine-stems….like stings of broken lyres” which suggest the lifeless setting. We can also tell
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