Siren Song Poem Commentary Essay

752 words - 4 pages

Siren song is a poem written by renowned author Margaret Atwood from the perspective of an ancient Greek siren. The Siren Song is used by Margaret Atwood to showcase the themes of manipulations, exploitation and sacrifice. Margaret Atwood uses the contents poem as a way to demonstrate how women manipulate the nature of men in order to exploit and ruin men. Through the poems usage of literacy devices such as allusions, metaphors and foreshadowing the authors emotions regarding the manipulation of men by the female sex is accurately revealed.
The first literary device to appear in the poem that reflects the authors message is the literary device of allusion. The title of the poem “Siren Song” is a reference to the sirens mentioned in ancient Greek mythology and Homers Odysseus. The siren song was a cry for help used by the sirens in order to manipulate men to drown to their death. The song states that “whoever has heard it is dead/ and the others can’t remember” (8-9). These two lines are a direct reference to the Odysseys written by Homer where Odyssey is the only man who did not fall prey to the sirens song, however following the experience he lost his memory of the specifics of the song. The reason the author chose to base this poem around the Sirens Song is because in ancient Greece the sirens were the symbol of a women’s deception and the danger it causes for men. Margaret Atwood is creating the metaphor that the sirens in the poem represent women in general and the sailor represent men. By creating a relation between women and the sirens the author is implying that the deception and manipulations of women are as, or equally as destructive as the damage caused by the sirens. The author is also implying that men are as susceptible to the charms of women as Greek sailors are to the sirens. Ms. Atwood demonstrates the destructiveness of the females’ destruction by using foreshadowing in the second stanza. Line 4-6 of the second stanza states “the song that forces men/ to leap overboard in squadrons/ even though they see beached skulls”. The reference of beached skulls imply that the fate of the sailors...

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