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Thread: "Identity" by Julio Noboa Polanca - URGENT

  1. #1

    Exclamation "Identity" by Julio Noboa Polanca - URGENT

    I need some help with this poem, it's kind of urgent - have an in class summative tomorrow. I understand the theme of the poem, be individual, unique, but I wanted to know what the lines like

    "To have broken through the surface of stone,
    to live, to feel exposed to the madness
    of the vast, eternal sky. "

    "To be swayed by the breezes of an ancient sea,
    carrying my soul, my seed, beyond the mountains of time
    or into the abyss of the bizarre "

    What do those lines symbolize? And what does the word "greed" in this poem represent?

    If you have never read the poem but are still good with this stuff - please help - I have posted the poem at the bottom.

    Let them be as flowers,
    always watered, fed, guarded, admired,
    but harnessed to a pot of dirt.
    I'd rather be a tall, ugly weed,
    clinging on cliffs, like an eagle
    wind-wavering above high, jagged rocks.
    To have broken through the surface of stone,
    to live, to feel exposed to the madness
    of the vast, eternal sky.
    To be swayed by the breezes of an ancient sea,
    carrying my soul, my seed, beyond the mountains of time
    or into the abyss of the bizarre
    I'd rather be unseen, and if
    then shunned by everyone,
    than to be a pleasant-smelling flower,
    growing in clusters in the fertile valleys,
    where they're praised, handled, and plucked
    by greedy, human hands.
    I'd rather smell of musty, green stench
    than of sweet, fragrant lilac.
    If I could stand alone, strong and free,
    I'd rather be a tall, ugly weed.

    I need to analyze two literary devices. Any help would be appreciated - and it is kind of urgent!

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Cur etiam hic es? Redzeppelin's Avatar
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    Neat poem.

    One of the primary devices in the poem also provides the key to the lines you specifically asked about. The poem is an extended metaphor (also known as a "conceit"). The speaker compares himself (and the rest of humanity) to plants - they to flowers, s/he to an "ugly weed." It is not the type of plant that matters, it is the speaker's willingness to be a "lesser" plant in order to experience the unrestrained freedom of life. If you simply imagine what it is like for a seed to sprout into growth, the line about "stone" makes sense (it's not literal "stone" but ground that is "stone-like"). The diction surrounding the speaker's experience as a "weed" is full of imagery of freedom, wildness and unfettered existence. The poem compares the two existences - one controlled and the other uncontrolled and chooses the latter as superior.

    I'll leave the second literary device up to you - as a teacher I've probably already given too much help. Good luck
    "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen, not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else." - C.S. Lewis

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