Snake - D.H. Lawrence Essay

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“Snake” * Analyzes and interpretation The edenic myth is a recurrent theme in several literary texts. The tale about the loss of the innocence and the seduction by evil is seen as an aspect everyone can relate to, whether it’s in relation to becoming an adult or realizing that we are going to die. The symbolic level of the myth portraits an inner psychological drama fitting in many developments. D.H. Lawrence wrote the poem Snake in the early 1920s in which he reverses the myth. It is a narrative poem that uses metaphors and symbolism to express Lawrence's idea's about religion throughout history. The poem is written in free verse, having no specific rhyming pattern. On a physical level the poem is about a man, who finds a snake drinking of his water-trough and regrets chasing it away with a clumsy log, but on a symbolic level it gets far more interesting. The first three verses describe the atmosphere as the narrator comes out to drink some water himself. It is “a hot, hot day” (l.17) and the poet is said to be coming from his “strange–scented shade of the great dark carob-tree” (l.19) with a “pitcher” in his hand. The male flowers of the carob-tree are known to produce the fairly distinct odor of semen. It combined with the nature and the hot weather, it indicates fruitfulness. The rich nature and the snake create associations to the Garden of Eden. Already here there are some hints leading towards concealed sexual and animalistic urges. The origin of the snake was from a fissure in the earth–wall, wherefrom it “slither slowly with its yellow–brown” “soft belly” to the “edge of the stone trough” (l.23-25). The stone rested its “throat upon the stone bottom” and started drinking softly its mouth into “his slack long body”. Later on the snake is described as “Being earth-brown, earth-golden from the burning bowels of the earth” (l.37), making a
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