The Fly and the Fox

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The Fly and The Fox In the poems, “The Fly” by William Blake and “The Fox” by Kenneth Patchen, both authors deal with the incredibly complicated theme of death despite having different atmospheres created by the authors. In “The Fly”, William Blake explores the idea of life and death through symbolism. With the lines “Am I not a fly like thee?” He questions and compares the importance between the life of a fly and the life of a human being. What makes humankind so superior? William Blake was a religious man, so there are religious aspects to “The Fly” as well. “My thoughtless hand has brushed away” suggests that killing a fly is an insignificant event in his life, however later in the poem with the line “Till some blind hand shall brush my wing”; William Blake brings to light the notion that whatever God he believed in could just as easily brush away his life as he did the fly. In an instant, one could die without warning. That’s life. William Blake also ties together Death and Intelligence. Is a human being’s death more significant because of its conscience intelligence and is the ignorance of an animal like the fly truly bliss? The relationship between the narrator and the fly starts out separate in the beginning of the poem, but ends in comparison. As if in the end, our lives are all simply equal in this world. “The Fox” by Kenneth Patchen explores the idea of Death through the story of a pregnant fox that is shot by a hunter. Like “The Fly”, the necessity and tragedy of death is another theme. In contrast to the death of an unsuspecting fly, the death of an animal carrying young is considered tragic. The fox is killed before she has a chance to bring life into the world, evoking sympathy in the reader. The atmosphere of the “The Fox” is far sadder than that of “The Fly” because the author expresses more emotion rather than the analytical standpoint

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