“Metaphors” by Sylvia Plath and “Hope” by Lisel Mueller
The poem “metaphors,” describes a pregnancy. The language of the poet describes a sad mood in which she describes the negative experiences in pregnancy. For example, the phrase she describes herself as “an elephant” which shows how big she has become. This is a metaphor in which she compares herself with an elephant. Imagery is also used in the poem. Plath writes that “Boarded the train there's no getting off.” This creates an imagination of the attitudes she has towards pregnancy and how people see it as something that takes too long to come to an end such that someone may see it as lasting forever. In the same way, Mueller in the poem “hope” makes use of metaphors. He makes use of the things that are common so as to enable the reader understand the ways in which hope can affect the daily lives.
The writer says that “it lives in each earthworm segment surviving cruelty.” In this, he refers to eyes that in reality do not see. For instance, the earthworm does not see and even when it is cut into pieces, the pieces go on moving. Therefore, the writer compares the earthworm and the cruelty that it goes through to our day to day lives. This shows that hope gives one the ability to go on even after they endure suffering just as the earthworm continues to move even after it is cut into pieces. There is also the use of imagery in the poem. “It sprouts in each occluded eye, of the many-eyed potato,” though the potato does not see, the writer gives an imagination that it is the “eyes” of the potato that enables it to reproduce. These two poems are different in that “metaphors” is written in the 1st person while “hope” is written in the 3rd person.
Roberts, E.V. (2008). Literature: An introduction to reading and writing. 9th Ed. New York: Pearson Education.