Sunday, April 27, 2008

Poem Analysis: As I Grew Older

As I Grew Older, a poem by the famous black poet Langston Hughes. I analyzed the title and thought about Langston Hughes discussing his childhood which could've dealt with problems we still have today as a nation, racism. How blacks were mistreated and how he rose to the situation and ended up where he is now, a famous poet talking about the U.S. in the early 1990s. Langston Hughes uses imagery to express his feelings and to get out of what i call a nightmare. Langston quotes "Help me to shatter this darkness, to smash this night, to break this shadow into a thousand lights of sun". Langston explains that a big or a distraction is blocking him from his future fate or the temporary dream that awaits him for his destiny. Langston basically doesn't like his life after the wall rose in front of him. The wall represents a distraction in his life or a threat, a threat to him and his loved ones around him. Langston wants to overcome these struggles by himself at first, but he finds out he can't, he even asks for help, but that's all he needed to do was to to admit it. Langston Hughes quotes "Bright like a sun", a simile because he uses the word "like" as a comparison. A few times in the poem he uses the word darkness, which in this case could mean death, depression, and vagueness. The wall rising to the sky blocking his view of the otherside would mean vagueness and depression. because who would want to stay on one side of the wall when you're so eager to get or find out what's on the other side especially when something so important determines your life. The attitude of the speaker is sad, full of pain, and hurt, almost imaginative since he compares his childhood almost like a dream. His attitude shifts when he states "Only the thick wall, only the shadow", to "My hands! My dark hands"! His attitude shifts from calm and moody to fury and hateful towards his hands. The main idea though this poem would be, to overcome darkness and it's trials by not hating who you are but believing in yourself and accepting the way you are. The significance is his character who is black, as Langston quotes " I am black".

1 comment:

Ellanee said...

I disagree about the final stanza showing "fury"--I think it is a moment of revelation; that Hughes is able to see his hands and he realizes they serve a purpose. From there, he is able to break through the wall.