Influences And Sources Of Theodore Roethke's Elegy For Jane

925 words - 4 pages

Influences and Sources of Theodore Roethke's Elegy for Jane

In "In Memoriam A. H. H.," a new kind of elegy with roots in the elegiac tradition, Tennyson writes, "For words, like Nature, half reveal/And half conceal the Soul within" (1045). The truth of Tennyson's statement appears in Theodore Roethke's "Elegy for Jane: My Student Killed by a Horse." Roethke conceals much about himself as a person yet reveals much about himself as a poet when he puts his grief into words.

Without knowing something of Roethke's personal and professional life, one would think that a student named Jane was the sole inspiration for this moving elegy; however, in The Glass House, the poet's biographer, Allan Seager, reveals more than one possible source of inspiration for the poem. At the University of Washington, as at Roethke's other teaching posts, students liked him, and he frequently formed close relationships with his students--in fact, he married one of his former students; however, this was not the case with Jane Bannick. Seager reveals that "Ted had not known her [Jane] very well." She " was a student of Ted's for only one quarter. She was thrown from a horse and killed" (193). Yet another one of his students may also have had an influence on this elegy.

According to Seager, Roethke "may have been influenced also by Lois Lamb, who had fallen from a horse the previous summer and described the attendant fears to him in detail" (193). Seager also mentions that [the poet] and Lamb conducted a series of `experiments' with a flock of turkeys on the sanitarium [Pinel] grounds" (187) during the poet's 1949-50 hospitalization of manic-depressive illness. These visits by Lamb indicate a closer relationship between Roethke and Lamb that would be more likely to create an awareness in the poet of the intense grief that might result at the tragic severing of an exceptionally close teacher-student bond. Furthermore, Ross-Bryant points out that Roethke expresses his loss in terms of a unique human relationship: "neither father nor lover" (75). The reader can only guess at what emotion may lie behind the poet's statement in regard to the relationship--and after reading his biography, which relationship.

Although Seager may leave us uncertain about the source of inspiration for the elegy and the emotion behind it, a Roethke scholar, Jay Parini, notes definite cultural influences that create a counterpoint in "Elegy for Jane." According to Parini, Roethke follows a Hellenic tradition when he associates Jane with "the elemental aspects of nature: the plant tendrils, the pickerel, the wren"; this association of death with rebirth defuses the poignancy of the girl's death. Roethke, Parini believes, pushes the technique of association to the "extreme"...

Find Another Essay On Influences and Sources of Theodore Roethke's Elegy for Jane

Sources of pleasure and disqui Essay

1011 words - 4 pages Sophocles, who was born in Colonus Hippius (now part of Athens), is thought by many modern scholars to be the greatest of the Greek tragedians. Around 430 BC, Sophocles wrote Oedipus Tyrannus, also known as Oedipus Rex. Oedipus Rex set the standard for Greek tragedy, and is regarded today as a work of genius. The philosopher Aristotle even went as far to consider it the most perfect of all the Greek tragedies. There are several reasons that this

Sources of Finance for a Business

2464 words - 10 pages Sources of Finance for a Business For a business to successfully run, it must have sources of finance. These are methods of financing the running of the business, buying of stock and paying of workers. Small businesses and large businesses have different sources of finance. In this section, I will discuss the different sources of finance used by small and large businesses, and the advantages and disadvantages of each

Pompeii: Some primary sources for pompeii and descriptions of thier purpose. On funeral and burial practices

1226 words - 5 pages used during worship. With these paintings we learn about religious art and the worship of Isis as a god possessions of the priest were also found this helps us understand what the priest does within the temple. The renovation after the 62 A.D earthquake was financed by a freed slave in the name of his young son. There may have been political motivations for this since freed slaves were not allowed to hold public office, and the son who was

Influences on and Temptations for Macbeth

1416 words - 6 pages ! " (Act 1, Scene 3, Lines 48-50) This tempted Macbeth by them addressing him as Thane of Glamis, Cawdor, and future king, it fed right into his desire for advancement. At this point in the play he is the newly appointed Thane of Glamis, and he is unaware of Duncan's decision in entitling him as the Thane of Cawdor. The witches were trying to create chaos by prophesying this to Macbeth, him having this information provided him with the incentive to

A Comparison of Thomas Gray's Elegy (Eulogy) Written in a Country Churchyard and Bryant's Thanatopsis

1827 words - 7 pages the reader to spend time with nature to become purified.   "Elegy" and "Thanatopsis" manifest death's ability to equalize all men. Bryant, in offering consolation for death, assures the reader that:   Thou shalt lie down With patriarchs of the infant world-- with kings   The powerful of the earth--the wise, the good; all men will end up in the same "great tomb." By showing that "The youth... matron and maid

Dialogic and Formal Analysis of Thomas Gray's Elegy (Eulogy) Written in a Country Churchyard

584 words - 2 pages Dialogic and Formal Analysis of Thomas Gray's Elegy (Eulogy) Written in a Country Churchyard By combining the formal and dialogical approaches, patterns and voices within the text seemingly interplay and overlap to reveal a deeper sense of the author's intentions. While the formalistic analysis focuses on the text and the unfolding themes within, the dialogical analysis recognizes "...the essential indeterminacy of meaning outside of the

Consumer Behaviour - Case Study - Consumer Influences and Implications for the Events of the Coonawarra

2551 words - 10 pages experience the region.2. Consumer Perception of CVA Events - Influences and ImplicationsPerception is the way in which individuals see and interpret the world. It is the meaning that individuals correlate between stimuli and subsequent sensory response (Summers, Johnson Morgan & Volkov, 2005). It is important for the CVA to understand how the information and messages that they communicate to consumers is likely to be interpreted, because

Evaluation of Sources Addressing Sleep and Performance

957 words - 4 pages academic performance it was found that a paper titled “Sleep-Wake Patterns and Academic Performance in University Students”, which was presented to the European Conference on Educational Research, is overall the most useful source represented to research the topic. While points, claims, and statistics may be found within all of the sources used for the research, the sheer amount of referenced studies and works within the “Sleep-Wake” paper lends

Identifying and Applying Sources of Power

2711 words - 11 pages as influence, that is, the capability of influencing people so that they will strive enthusiastically toward the achievement of group goals. A leader is one whose charismatic personality rouses people for some cause. It is not just with words, but a leaders influences others by their actions. It is their ability to use the various sources of power to benefit those who follow. Each source has its own significant place and importance. They can be

Alternative Sources of Fuel and Energy

3255 words - 13 pages States during the 1920?s hydropower accounted for 40 percent of energy consumed and today it only accounts for a little more than 9 percent. This change of sources is largely due to the invention of fuel consuming stem power plants, which are cheaper to construct, but also more polluting. Although not all countries have taken the same destructive path as the U.S. in Brazil and the Democratic Republic of the Congo hydro power accounts for over

Domestic and International Sources of Financing

1133 words - 5 pages Domestic and International Sources of Financing There are several private and public sectors that offer financial assistance for global business enterprise. Denim Trends will enlist financial professionals that understand global business and Denim Trends operations. Hiring financial professionals with a good understanding and knowledge of domestic and international financing will assist Denim Trends in dealing with organizational risk. Denim

Similar Essays

Comparing And Contrasting Theodore Roethke's My Papa's Waltz And Robert Hayden's Those Winter Sundays

1447 words - 6 pages The events of our childhood and interactions with our parents is an outline of our views as parents ourselves. Although Robert Hayden’s relationship with his father differentiates from the relationship of Theodore Roethke and his father, they are both pondering back to their childhood and expressing the events in a poem. “My Papa’s Waltz” and “Those winter Sundays” provide the reader with an image of a childhood event which states how fathers

Milton's Elegy Vs. Gray's Elegy. Through The Use Of Imagery, And Pathetic Fallacy, Argues The Superiority Of Milton's Elegy

887 words - 4 pages rugged elms, that yew-trees shade,/Where heaves the turf in many a mould'ring heap/Each in his narrow cell for ever laid,/The rude forefathers of a hamlet sleep." This is saying that the dead are buried under withering trees, laid to rest in the dirt forever more. Milton's elegy is superior than gray's simply because the imagery of Milton's piece makes for a more pleasant picture, and can draw the reader in better.Tone is also an important factor in a

How Does Television And The Media Influence Children? The Influence Of Media On Obesity Media Influences On Behavior Other Sources Of Media Violence

1060 words - 4 pages How Does Television and the Media Influence Children?The Influence of Media on ObesityMedia Influences on BehaviorOther Sources of Media ViolenceMedia plays very a important role and has influence in virtually every aspect of our lives. It is considered as the best source to know about the happenings of world. Newspaper, magazine, radio, television and internet are the different types of media. It greatly affects our lives because media has the

Strategies For Analyzing And Using Multiple Sources Of Data For Instructional Improvement

912 words - 4 pages Teaching a student was once just that; teaching. The past ten years have required a much more formal analysis from teachers about how their students are doing and what they, as teachers, should do about it. Teachers have now become students of data. They must prepare students for tests (usually standardized), and, a few months later, teachers receive results from those tests. It is at that point that teachers should learn from the data that