Monday, July 22, 2019
Appreciation of The Tyger Essay Example for Free
Appreciation of The Tyger Essay Subject matter Blake is this poem gives a description of the tiger, describing vividly its appearance, its structure, its beauty and its terror. As well as describing the tiger, the poet also tries to explain how he pictures the creation of the tiger, as well as the terror of the creator (who created such a fearsome and awesome creature). Purpose The poets purpose in this poem is to describe something that fascinates him. The tiger in his view is a powerful, yet beautiful creature, a creature so powerful that it is terrifying. However, the poet also attempts to comprehend its creator, God. He shows that if the creation is powerful and terrifying, and asks the question how powerful must be the creator? The poet clearly expresses that he is very afraid of the power of God, and what God is able to do. Throughout the poem the poet expresses his admiration, his wonder and his fear, this poem is as much a study of the tiger as a study of God. Emotion Though the poem is mostly descriptive, the poet gives the reader some clues of the emotions that he feels. On the face of this poem, it seems to be a poem about a nature. However, looking further into the poem one can see that the poem is a very religious poem. One of the most dominant emotion that one can feel when reading the poem is the wonder and awe. Whether it is at the tiger or at God, Blake shows much wonder; as shown in the extract in verse 1: And what shoulder what art, Could twist thy heart? Blake describes the colours of the tigers fur as burning, as though the fur of the tiger was a fire itself. This fire is carried on into verse two where Blake describes that there is a fire burning in the eyes of the tiger.. In line 3 and 4 of verse 1 Blake turns his attention to the creator: What immortal hand or eye, Could frame thy fearful symmetry. His wonders about what the hands and eyes of God are like. Blake sees the tiger as a creation of a great craftsman, a work of art. The most important parts of a craftsman are his eyes and his hands. They are a craftsmans most important tools, allowing him to craft the image he has in his imagination. This idea could have been influenced by Blakes work as a engraver. The other dominant emotion in the poem is the fear shown by Blake. His is very afraid of the tiger. Yet his is even more afraid of God the creator of such an awesome beast. This is a sometimes a feature of Christians to be God-fearing people. This fear can be seen in the following extracts: What dread hand? what dread feet? In what furnace was thy brain? Dare its deadly terrors clasp The extracts above show how much Blake fears the tiger. He is afraid of the tigers claws, and the image in Blakes mind is a beast created from the furnace of heaven and hammered out by a master craftsman. This dreaded ferocious inspires much fear in Blake, even though he admires its beauty What immortal hand or eye, Dare frame thy fearful symmetry. Blake tries to imagine the power required to create the tiger. He tries to picture what being could create the tiger. The picture of this powerful and yet very skilful craftsman is very daunting to Blake. What person would dare take this fearsome beast out of the furnaces, hammer it into an elegant yet very potent shape. What person could twist the shape of the sinews of the tigers heart and create a burning fur coat and burning eyes? The image of this creation is very frightful to Blake, let alone the God, the person who hammered, twisted, and shaped this beast. It should also be noted the could was replaced with dare. This shows that first Blake only thought about the ability, skill, power and strength needed to create the tiger. Later on at the end of the poem, Blake is thinking about the nerve and the daring required to create the tiger. Craftsmanship Structure The poem has a very regular structure, it is divided into six stanzas, each with four lines. The first stanza is repeated in the last stanza but could in line four is replaced with dare. Each line is approximately the same length in words and syllables. Each stanza is used to address one point about God or the tiger. The poem seems also to be structured in the thought process of the poet. First he looks at the tiger itself, describing its prominent features. The poem then tries to picture the creation process of the tiger, and the workshop of this great craftsman. The poet then tries to move on to this creator or craftsman himself. He wonders whether God was content with this creation, and wonders about the more heavenly creature: the stars and the angels. Language The language used in the poem is very vocative. Throughout the poem the poet seems to be talking to the tiger. He seems to be enquiring about the origins of the tiger: What the hammer? What the chain? In what furnace was thy brain? He is asking the tiger as though the tiger is a friend of the poet (the use of thou and thee). The poet seems to the reader as a thinker trying to find out the answer to a very difficult question. The poet is asking questions that can not be answered for very little is known about God. The language is also very striking, very vivid and effective. The language catch the readers attention and is imaginative. It is very appropriate to the poem itself, the language increases the fear and adds effect to the wonder. The words does deliver the message that the poet intends. Much of the language helps to strike the fear into the minds of the readers. When reading this poem, one can not help but feel a sense of awe to the tiger and God. Imagery In the poem there are no striking examples of similes and metaphors, but the poet does use a large amount of personification. He personifies God as a craftsman or a blacksmith: And what shoulder what art, Could twist the sinews of thy heart? The poet seems to apply his own life experiences to his image of God. He sees God as this craftsman working by a furnace like himself. He sees the material the God uses to create as metallic. In the process of creation, God works like a blacksmith, heating the metal until the critical point is reached, the metal is then taken out and hammered into shape. This process repeats until the perfect shape is reached. Once the work is finished, God must be pleased and proud of his creations like other artists. The poet also personifies the tiger, addressing the tiger as if the tiger was able to understand him. He asks the tiger questions as though the tiger was able to answer him and explain to him what the poet does not understand. The poet also personifies the stars: When the stars threw down their spears , And watered the heavens with their tears; The poet sees the stars as the angels of heaven, throwing down their weapons and crying at such a wonderful creation. The poet makes the reader see God as a human with tow sides, power and the strength represented by the tiger, while the gentle caring side represented by the lamb. This in many ways is the symbolism used throughout the poem by the poet. Movement There is not real rhythm or movement to the poem itself. There are no real rhythmic qualities in the poem. However, when read out loud, the poem should be read out slowly, and loudly. This adds to the effect of the poem, it gives one more time to process the carefully chose words. It would make the poem more effective and allow the listener to truly appreciate the poem. Sounds The most significant sound feature of the poem is its rhyming scheme. Each stanza rhymes in the form of AABB, with the exception of the last line of the first and last stanza of the poem. The poet uses neither onomatopoeia nor alliteration nor assonance. In fact the poem uses very little sound features. I do however think that onomatopoeia could have been used to help the reader to imagine the sounds of this great workshop that Blake pictures in his mind. It would help the reader reach a better level of understanding. It would have also made the poem more affective. The poem is very strong with the visual part of the imagery, however, without the sounds, the perception of the poets idea is incomplete. For example, if the poet included the bangs, clangs of the workshop, or even included the growls and the roars of the tiger. This would have increased ones sense of wonder and awe. Other sound features such as alliteration and assonance, I feel, would not have been as effective and would not have helped the understanding of the poets imagination. Summary The poem has had a very strong impact on me. The poem has made me aware that the world is made up of fierceness and strength (shown in the tiger) as well as gentleness and peace (as shown in the lamb). Blakes tiger is a very terrifying and dynamic creation, which apart from being seen to represent the fiercer side of God, could also be seen to represent the forces of evil lurking in our world. This evil seems to be able to hide in the cover of the darkness of the night, and haunts our minds through our dreams and especially our nightmares. Blakes lamb (Did he who made the lamb also make thee?) apart from being a symbol of Gods gentle and loving side, can also be seen as a symbol of all the good in the world; the caring, the love and the kindness shown in Jesus Christ himself. The poem, as I have already noted, is a very visual poem. Though it is read, the poem inspires us to try and picture what he sees. The words of the poem create very vivid, clear and striking images in the reader or listeners minds. We see dynamic beast with awesome features, a skilful and great craftsman working laboriously in his great workshop. Inside the workshop burns a great furnace with huge and very hot fire. The craftsman hammers and twists the shape of the creation, and when finally he has completed this marvellous work, he is proud and smiles. The angels around this creator all weep and throw down their weapons at the sight of this marvel. The only flaw that I have noted is the lack of use of sound features. This poem, as I have already mentioned, would more complete if the reader can hear the sounds of the workshop and hear the weeps of the angels or even the deafening roars of the tiger as it first leaps out of the furnace as a complete creation. This does not flaw the poem in a significant way, but I feel that it would improve the poem and make the poem more effective Blake made use of sound features.