“Love after Love” is a poem which represents the struggle faced by someone who does not give themselves any self-recognition and throughout symbolises the struggle and constraints the individual has to face. The poem is written in 2nd person, telling the reader what to do, and hence therefore reaching out and involving the reader far more in the poem. The poet uses the differences in tone and mood to help display how the person involved feels about itself. The language techniques used throughout by the poet re-enforce the message of solidarity in the poem. “You will greet yourself arriving”.
Through the individual the poet differentiates between the excitement and elation of coming to terms with learning to deal with you. Other language techniques used by Derek Walcott include metaphors for self-recognition and love, “…your own door, in your own mirror…” To show the poem as one continuous passage with all connects with each other, the poet uses enjambment to show the audience that through each stanza the individual is coming to terms with self and how the progression from being apprehensive through to forgiveness and excitement of own life.
“To itself, to the stranger who has loved you All your life, whom you ignored” Another Language skill used to underpin the subject matter is Assonance as an echo which shows the singularity and solitude of the individual. “…whom you ignored For another, who knows you by heart.” All of these methods used help show the reader the image of freedom; where they can dispense with imposed vies and also it helps them to understand the poem’s message of the celebration of self discovery.
The themes of; personal honesty, self-truth, individuality and sense of self are also echoed throughout “This Room” by Imtiaz Dharker as well as “Love after Love.” The Poet uses metaphors to help present the message he is getting across to the reader; the title “This Room,” the room is a metaphor for culture and the furniture he speaks of in the opening stanza is a metaphor for customs associated with his culture.
The image of new life is presented to the reader to give them the opportunity to read the poem with a clear mind straight at the beginning of the poem. “This room is breaking out of itself, cracking through” As in the first poem, the poet uses the message of freedom of speech and freedom of living your life in the way you want to, and without the constraints of the expectations of your culture or of other people.
The poet talks about a change of revolution and has very restrictive thoughts throughout the opening passage of “This Room.” “The bed is lifting out of its nightmares.” The present tense used by Imtiaz Dharker has the feeling of releasing boundaries immediately and also the enjambment used once again gives the poem a free flow and sense of continuity. Other messages portrayed throughout the poem by the poet include how the he wishes to be free from prejudice and also how he is to rid himself of unnecessary clutter. With his poem “This Room,” Imtiaz Dharker offers an alternative view point about having a culture; he offers an insight into the “dark side” of owning a culture and how it can diversely affect your life.
This poem shares many of themes and ideas of “Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan” by Moniza Alvi. Both poems use symbolism to describe there feelings on life and their cultures and how this effects there life. In “This Room” the “…daily furniture of our lives…” represents how the poet feels about his culture, and how he feels that it is an unnecessary burden which he has to carry. This feeling of symbolism is echoed throughout “Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan.”
However, Moniza Alvi uses symbolism to describe all of the good things her culture offers to her and how it affects her life in a good way. “My aunts chose an apple-green sari, silver-bordered for my teens.” The poets feelings are displayed in the way she describes the clothes she is given and this is symbolises her culture. Also, “Love after Love” is connected to “Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan” in the sense that they both have a theme of constraint. In “Love after Love” the constraints are apparent in the symbolism of “Giving wine. Giving bread” this is linked to the constraints that Derek Walcott speaks about and connected to the poem as a whole.
In “Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan” the constraints and differences faced by Moniza Alvi are the moral differences she faces when she speaks of the differences in cultures and is symbolic of the other culture. “…to consider the cruelty and the transformation from camel to shade,” she knows that this is accepted in Pakistan but now as she lives in England she has to deal with the conflict on both cultures and has to adapt to her life in England. All three poems share the theme that from the opening stanza to the end, they show a progression of thoughts.