Poetry Explication Essay Essays Example

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Literature, Poetry, Poem, Fish, Nature, Choice, Turn, Structure

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2020/12/06


“The Fish” is the most anthologized poem written by Elizabeth Bishop. This poem has gained its popularity because it avoids the surrealism present in almost every other work of the author. The title provides the idea of what the poem is about. The key theme of the poem is the problem of choice whether to keep the caught fish or to release it. Either decision has its own consequences for the fisher that interlaces with the subject of withstanding of man and nature.
This mediative lyric poem describes the author's thoughts and feelings. It creates a single and unified impression of what is going on between the speaker and the fish. By means of words and language this poem appeals to readers' senses. The key perspective of this poem lays within interaction of “human being – nature.” In this poem the author thinks about the problems of existence and makes philosophic conclusions.
Reading the first line, readers become aware of the fact that the fish was caught “I caught a tremendous fish / and held him beside the boat.” After getting a glimpse of the fish's look, the poem ends with letting it go. The fisher did this for several reasons. She felt proud of being able to catch such a treasure “I stared and stared / and victory filled up / the little rented boat,” but at the same time she saw the fish as a warrior in the turbulent waves of the deep sea and. It turns out that the main character in the poem is the fish, not the narrator. Despite the absence of dialogue in the poem, readers feel the whole spectrum of the fish's feelings through the actions and thoughts of the fisheк. By letting it go, the fisher showed that she was touched by the sight of the fish and it provoked her to reconsider lots of important issues.
The structure of the poem is not rigid and thus pretty simple. It is made up of seventy-six lines. The lines are organized in a free continuous form without being separated into stanzas. This allows to keep with free flowing feel of the poem. There is no discerning rhyme scheme that adds simplicity to the poem. The only thing that is repeatedly referred in it is the fish. The structure of the poem may be conceived as a foreshadowing of the end of the story when the fisherman lets the fish go. However, there are some figurative traits in the poem such as personification, metaphor and symbolism.
The readers may find a major metaphor of the poem in such lines as “his brown skin hung in strips / like accident wallpaper.” The author speaking about the skin of the fish recollects the look of an old paper. Some symbols appear several times in the poem. For example, the rainbow that that gives hope of happy ending to the readers. It can be seen in the poem when the fisher thought about the hooks in the fish's jaw “Like medals with their ribbons / frayed and wavering.” This proves that she started felling sympathetic to the fish and respected it. Another moment when the readers encounter the rainbow is when the fisher let the fish go. This is the symbol of compassionate feelings that contributed to the fisher's desire to release her catch.
The fish is personified in this poem. When the readers see it for the first time it is just a fish. When they proceed to the end of the poem, it transforms from a simple fish in the hands of the fisher into a veteran, a warrior of the waves. It becomes more human as if it had soul. The woman stops seeing an animal in this fish, now she sees its big eyes and fills with sympathy to it. The transformation that in this context means personification continues as the fisher looks at the fish more. The description provides the smallest details for the readers to be able to imagine it well. In the end the readers understand that the fisher starts feeling that the fish has gone through a lot thus it requires to be treated in the light of dignity and respect.
The poem strengthens the point of view that man and nature can live in peace and unity. This woman represents the merciful and kind human nature that is devoted to protect the nature. The killing of the fish can ruin the fisher's soul. That is why the theme of choice comes down not to inner conflict to keep or to let go but to inner reconciliation and understanding. The tone and the rhythm of the poem prompt to the readers that the fisher will make the right choice at the end and that nature will be preserved.
In my opinion, the genuine of this poem is in the simplicity of its structure. By using simple and common figurative traits the author made the mood of this poem. She used the character of fisher for the readers to see the fish through her eyes. This is the strongest element of the poem. Reading it, we do not “hear” any noise, we encounter only description which means we turn on our visual senses. This fish in its turn gives a chance to the readers to feel what is going on inside the fisher's mind and how the thoughts transform as the poem proceeds. At the same time, the poem provided a perfect example of possibility to dissolve in the lines, to see main characters from the other perspective and to widen your horizons.
I liked this poem very much and I would definitely recommend reading it. When I read it, I felt like I was that fisher. I could see through her eyes and I could feel what the right choice was. The idea of the poem did not seem to be related to me but line by line I realized that the key theme was common for everybody. Making any choice we should evaluate not only direct consequences of our decision but also how it will affect us. In this poem the author showed that the simplest kind deed may turn the whole world into a better place. The poem gave me perspective of the interdependent existence – we depend on the nature to the extent it depends on us. That is why keeping and preserving it is our duty.

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WePapers. (2020, December, 06) Poetry Explication Essay Essays Example. Retrieved August 20, 2022, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/poetry-explication-essay-essays-example/
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WePapers. Poetry Explication Essay Essays Example. [Internet]. December 2020. [Accessed August 20, 2022]. Available from: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/poetry-explication-essay-essays-example/
"Poetry Explication Essay Essays Example." WePapers, Dec 06, 2020. Accessed August 20, 2022. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/poetry-explication-essay-essays-example/
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"Poetry Explication Essay Essays Example," Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com, 06-Dec-2020. [Online]. Available: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/poetry-explication-essay-essays-example/. [Accessed: 20-Aug-2022].
Poetry Explication Essay Essays Example. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/poetry-explication-essay-essays-example/. Published Dec 06, 2020. Accessed August 20, 2022.

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