The character, had to tolerate smelling the whiskey in his father’s breath. The image used in the poem,like death,may also show that the boy probably thought that such behaviors from his father seemingly had no end; it was something he had to tolerate and fight against as long as he could. At a young age, he realized that it was no easy having to deal with an alcoholic for a father. “Could make a small boy dizzy” expressed how intoxicated his father really was but it is also suggest the boy’s respect and fright for his father’s structure. When reading the second text, one learns that losses the
He uses the simile “but I hung on like death, such waltzing was not easy” to show that he hung on to his father not wanting to get off of him even though it was difficult for him to hang on. It shows that he loves his father even if he is drunk. At the end of the poem, I believe the whole story is that his father came home from work, drunk. Once he got home he picked up his son and began to dance with
Father and Son Waltz What is the difference between love and abuse? While reading “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke it could easily be seen how this poem can be portrayed as abusive opposed to loving. The words and tone of this poem seems hurtful and strong. For example, the son is described to hanging to his father “like death” (Roethke 3). Those words sound really negative, when in reality the son is holding on to his father, while dancing, so he would not fall to the ground.
The lines “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke can be paraphrased for better understanding and interpreting the author’s meaning for the poem. For the most part the lines in the poem are not holding mixed sentence structure. The speaker in the poem is a young boy who is describing a moment he had with his father after his father had been drinking, “the whiskey on your breath” (line 1). I also feel line 4, “such waltzing was not easy,” indicates drinking and papa being clumsy or intoxicated, not being able to keep his balance or keep time of the dance steps. The tone throughout the poem shows me a boy having a fun moment with his father.
My Papa’s Waltz Summary Lines 1-2 The whiskey on your breath Could make a small boy dizzy; Judging by the title, the person addressed in these lines is the small boy's father, and the small boy is our speaker. The father has been drinking whiskey, and not just a little. He's so drunk that even the smell of his breath could make a small boy, like his son, feel a bit woozy. These lines show that the poem will address the father in the second person, referring to him as "you." But we don't think he's actually there with the boy because, after all, we hear nothing back from the man.
He is so drunk that even the smell of his breath could make his son, who is just “a small boy”, feels a bit woozy. In the first two lines, it establishes the father is drunk by the sense of smell, which is a situation that can lead to violence. The action of dancing is normally associated with a series of elegant step but the imagery from this poem show that it is not. Baird also suggests that the “waltz” may be the father’s unconscious way of punishing his son. (Baird 12) Readers can imagine the action of their waltz from line five to six.
Poetry is an art form which includes combination of words, images and thoughts that can be convert to combine the reader’s understanding of the poem with their personal thoughts and experience. In My Papa’s Waltz by Theodore Roethke, the drill outline can be used to analyze this poem. Roethke uses the figures of speech as well as devices of sound to describe the relationship of son with his father who is drunk and waltzing. The poem consists of four stanzas with four lines each. The first two stanzas of the poem explain the waltzing of father with his son and the last two stanzas describe the father’s terror as well as his hard work in his life.
Both poems make use of the metaphor of dancing to reflect the weakness in victim’s ability to come forward with their abuses. Both poems use the extended metaphor of dancing to demonstrate the tendencies of every day abuse and the coping mechanisms for the children being abused. In “My Papa’s Waltz”, the boy states that “ Such waltzing was not easy”, which ironically contrasts with the happiness and fluidity of dancing, especially as a child, and especially with your parents. The audience can make assumptions that the boy is being abused when Roethke suggests in the lines “You beat time on my head” and “My right ear scraped a buckle”. Both reasonable thoughts when considering the proportions of child versus parent, also evoke thoughts of habitual abuse especially from intoxicated persons.
He is dancing and twirling his small son who seems both excited and fearful at the same time. The Mother seems annoyed that she will have to be the one who cleans the mess that is being made. The ending of the dance leaves you wondering “Is this more than a dance?” Roethke uses Imagery, Rhyme, and Similes to pull you into the scene of “My Papa’s Waltz.” Initially, we see the use of Imagery of Olfactory when Roethke states “The Whiskey on your breath could make a small boy dizzy;” you immediately relate to the father being drunk, and can almost smell the alcohol. The rest of the Imagery In the poem is visual; he paints the picture of the dance with the Mother standing by with a frown and the Dad’s holding the small little boy tightly by the wrist. “The hand that held my wrist was battered on one knuckle” can give the image that maybe the father is forcing the boy to dance with him.
“The whiskey on your breath” (Clugston, My Papa’s Waltz, para. 1) made it easy for me to relate to right in the beginning. My grandfather was an alcoholic and his alcohol choice was Jack Daniels Whiskey. With this line, the author captured my attention and created the scene of seeing my grandfather intoxicated and smelling the whiskey as soon as he spoke. “Could make a boy dizzy” (Clugston, My Papa’s Waltz, para.