Blog Entry 3/1/11
Through reading the three poems assigned for this week “The Video,” by Fleur Adcock, “My Papa’s Waltz,” written by Theodore Roethke, and “(Untitled)” by Peter Meinke I noticed a trend. The perspectives that each of the authors have relate of their own different experience. They give the readers awareness about the little things in childhoods that drastically effect their levels of happiness.
To begin with, “The Video” describes the sense being immature and naïve to the world as a child. When the author says in the first line “…Ceri watched,” the verb ‘to watch’ shows that she may be young at the time because she is in no way taking part of her mother giving birth and she is simply mesmerized by this event. She is baffled and maybe confused, which shows her immaturity. The last two lines of the poem, when the author describes her fascination by the way she watched the video over and over again. Ceri can be described as naïve, but I see that being a good thing because a young girl should be shocked with the miracle of birth. The world today has too many bad things in it that takes away children naïveté. Girls are having children in their early teenage years and reading this poem gives me a sigh of relief to know that there are still children out there who are baffled by childbirth. I believe that the author wanted to be humorous to show the shock of her sister being born because it is sweet and innocent of Ceri.
“My Papa’s Waltz,” offers a similar aspect of childhood happiness through a little boy and his father’s relationship. The happiness is felt by the mother when he says in a playful way, “My mother’s countenance could not unfrown itself,” because as much as she wanted to approve of the horseplay of her husband and son she tried to act motherly and not tolerate it. The boy could not get enough of his father, “Still clinging to your shirt.” It is nice to read something like this seeing a family happily enjoying an evening at home. Though some aspects arise in the poem that may relate of abuse and alcohol, I think the author only wrote it that way to remind the reader that those types of relationships are out there but it is not this one. He writes it in an upbeat rhythm, like a waltz, to give the perspective of happiness and enjoyment in this family.
In contrast to the two happier poems, “(Untitled)” gives a completely gloomy and upsetting perspective. The son is greatly depicted physically and mentally so the author could in fact be the son. I believe that the speaker is writing this letter from his father’s point of view saying what kind of apology he would want to hear. The structure of this poem has few capitalizations and periods, which adds to the flow of the letter. He says after he tells him he is beautiful and fair, “Now I see that no one knows that about himself, but must be told until it takes hold.” In his way he is saying don’t do to your son what I did to you, tell him he is beautiful and you love him. Unlike the other poems this one talks about the abusive relationships and the hurt. In his own way the author wrote this for all of readers who have been hurt physically in anyway to hear an apology. The title is (Untitled) because this letter can be addressed to any of those abused children out there in the world.