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Analysis of Burn’s Poem A Red, Red Rose

Analysis of Burn’s Poem A Red, Red Rose

‘A Red, Red Rose’, was first published in 1794 in A Selection of Scots Songs, edited by Peter Urbani. Written in ballad stanzas, the verse – read today as a poem – pieces together conventional ideas and images of love in a way that transcends the “low” or non-literary sources from which the poem is drawn. In it, the speaker compares his love first with a blooming rose in spring and then with a melody “sweetly play’d in tune.” If these similes seem the typical fodder for love-song lyricists, the second and third stanzas introduce the subtler and more complex implications of time. In trying to quantify his feelings – and in searching for the perfect metaphor to describe the “eternal” nature of his love – the speaker inevitably comes up against love’s greatest limitation, “the sands o’ life.” This image of the hour-glass forces the reader to reassess of the poem’s first and loveliest image: A “red, red rose” is itself an object of an hour, “newly sprung” only “in June” and afterward subject to the decay of time. This treatment of time and beauty predicts the work of the later Romantic poets, who took Burns’s work as an important influence.

‘A Red, Red Rose’ is written in four four-line stanzas, or quatrains, consisting of alternating tetrameter and trimeter lines. This means that the first and third lines of each stanza have four stressed syllables, or beats, while the second and fourth lines have three stressed syllables. Quatrains written in this manner are called ballad stanzas.

The ballad is a old form of verse adapted for singing or recitation, originating in the days when most poetry existed in spoken rather than written form. The typical subject matter of most ballads reflects folk themes important to common people: love, courage, the mysterious, and the supernatural. Though the ballad is generally rich in musical qualities such as rhythm and repetition, it often portrays both ideas and feelings in overwrought but simplistic terms. The dominant meter of the ballad stanza is iambic, which means the poem’s lines are constructed in two-syllable segments, called iambs, in which the first syllable is unstressed and the second is stressed. As an example of iambic meter, consider the following line from the poem with the stresses indicated:

That’s sweet / ly play’d / in tune.

Lessons Learned from A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings

Lessons Learned from A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings

“A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings” is a short fiction story written by Gabriel Garcia Marquez in 1955. Magical realism plays a major part in this story by the use of fantasy of an old man being portrayed as an angel who has come to create miracles to a family along with many other believers. Some will believe, others will just shoo this so called “angel” away in a painful and heart-breaking way.

I enjoyed this story very much. I was able to get very interested. Marquez starts it out with “On the third day of rain.” That line right there is magical because angels are of God, and on the third day God’s son rose from the grave. It was the third day that Pelayo came upon this very old man who had appeared to be an angel. It was awful how Pelayo had thrown this angel into the pen with the hens. Only after Pelayo and his wife Elisenda were blessed with their child not being sick anymore did he realize that he had done this angel wrong. Pelayo set the angel free so he could go at his will. What was strange was that the angel was there at the light of dawn, right where they had put him when they had first discovered him. At this point, I am thinking this is really a spiritual story. People just have to magically realize what is happening. I see a magical element in this angel. In our everyday life, we see angels as beautiful, clean, and miraculous in certain ways. This angel was infested with parasites, it’s wings were very dirty, and the miracles performed were weird. The purpose was to get people like me interested in seeing the angel from two different point of views. How people were treating this angel was awful. They would throw things at him and treat him like …

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…as come to create miracles in a family a long with many other believers. This story definitely taught me never to lie to my parents again. I sure never would want to be turned into a spider. I thought that lessons were to be learned. From my point of view, I thought that this story also could possibly have been about the death and resurrection of Christ. I do recommend, if someone who appears to be an angel ever comes knocking at the door, the person should not throw him in with the chickens.

Works Cited

Faris, Wendy B. “Magical Realism : Post Expressionism. “Magical Realism: Theory, History, Community.” Ed. Lois Parkinson Zamora and Wendy B. Faris. Durham; N.C.: Duke UP, 1995: 163-190.

Garcia Marquez, Gabriel. “A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings.” The Norton Introduction to Literature , Ed. Jerome Beaty. N.Y.: W.W. Norton

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