Comparison Of Poems Dover Beach And The Buried Life And By Matthew Arnold

933 words - 4 pages

Matthew Arnold uses diction and imagery to produce the themes of alienation and self discovery in the poems: "Dover Beach" and "The Buried Life."
“Dover Beach” talks about a man's attitude toward life. Arnold uses diction to show his feelings and inner most thoughts. In “Dover Beach” he claims “the sea is calm tonight, the tide is full, the moon lies fair upon the straits.” These lines show a sense of clarification until he claims he has lost his faith by saying “and we are here as on a darkling plain swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight.” These lines present the idea of him not knowing why he is on this earth. His negative thoughts affect his being able to be happy for example when he says “Ah, love, let us be true to one another! for the world which seems to lie before us like a land of dreams…” He is starting with a positive note with being true to one another but then interrupts with the artificialness of the world. Arnold also uses diction to describe the negative qualities of the world by saying “Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light, Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain..” Arnold uses imagery in the first stanza when observing the sea and the moon. This helps the reader picture moonlit water and listening to the sound of the waves crashing. Starting off with a very peaceful scene, we drift off comparing the crashing of the waves to the loss of faith our generations have experienced. The end of the poem leaves the reader questioning if the world is not here for us who is? The world is filled with different kinds of people and with different stories to share but for some reason we don’t share with each other. We keep all of our emotions and stories inside of our buried life while we put on an act for the whole world to see. We are afraid to show our true selves because the progress of the world may not stop and wait for us to catch up.
“The Buried Life” uses diction to show transformation from “nameless sadness” to “winding murmur” of “life’s flow.” The idea of alienation is discussed in the second stanza when it says “alien to the rest Of men, and alien to themselves-and yet The same heart beats in every human breast!” This quote describes how every human is different and every human has their own stories and experiences but we don’t like to share them. “Alien to the rest Of men, and alien to themselves” relates to the two versions we have of ourselves. This quote “But hardly have we, for one little hour, Been on our own line,...

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