BLOGGER TEMPLATES AND TWITTER BACKGROUNDS »

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

In the Midst of Hardship: by Latiff Mohidin - Analysis

Reference: Tan, C. & Tan, R. (2011). Selected Poems, Short Stories and Drama: Form 4. Selangor: Pearson Longman

PARAPHRASE OF THE POEM

Stanza 1
The villagers returned home at daybreak and their clothes were torn and wet. They walked over to the stove. They had scratches on their hands and their legs were full of cuts. However, they did not knit their brows to show despair.

Stanza 2
The villagers had spent a whole day and night walking through the horrible floodwater. The water was full of broken twigs, pieces of tree barks and bloated animal carcasses. They had been desperately looking for their son's albino buffalo. However, they did not find it.

Stanza 3
The villagers had been born into a hard life and yet, they grew up without a sigh or complaint. Now, after that difficult day and night, they are laughing and exchanging jokes and preparing to relax with a smoke in the kitchen.

ELEMENTS OF THE POEM: LITERAL AND FIGURATIVE MEANING

Stanza 1

Literal Meaning:
The family returns home at daybreak, soaked to the skin. They have scratches and wounds on their hands and legs. They do not look depressed or disturbed after what they have just gone through.

Figurative  Meaning:
As we journey through life, we may experience circumstances that are painful and challenging. Despite these challenges, we should not despair. We should face hardship with courage.

Stanza 2

Literal Meaning:
They have been out the whole day and night. They have trudged through the floodwater which is full of twigs, branches and dead animals. They are looking for their son's albino buffalo. However, they do not find it.

Figurative Meaning:
Our journey through life may be troubled, and we may face obstacles and tragic losses along the way.

Stanza 3

Literal Meaning:
Although they have been poor from birth and have experienced a lot of hardships, they have grown up without regrets. They are now relaxing in the kitchen, cracking jokes and preparing to have a smoke.

Figurative Meaning:
We may be born into a life of hardship, but that does not mean we should live in despair. We should learn how to cope with the difficulties we face, instead of dwelling too much on them. We should take them in our stride, with humour and a strong camaraderie with our family and friends.

THEMES
1. Life's hardships and stoicism in life
2. Accepting, with a positive outlook, circumstances that cannot be changed.

TONE
Sympathetic and emphatic tone, last stanza ends on humorous tone.

MOOD AND ATMOSPHERE
Mood: thoughtful and sombre, and changes to delightful moment at the end of the stanza.
Atmosphere: acceptance of one's fate.

POINT OF VIEW
Third person point of view: 'They'

IMAGERY
1.Soaky clothes torn
2.Limbs marked by scratches and their legs full of wounds
3. Horrendous floods
4. Bloated carcasses
5. Albino

SYMBOLS
1. Horrendous flood: obstacles of life
2. Bloated carcasses: death and decay
3. Albino buffalo: treasured and valued objects.

1 comments:

Eric Constantine said...

hahaa....okay... in fact, i havent updated my blog for quite some time.. will do that soon.