Poetry Essay Example

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  1036 Words
Date:  2022-08-18

A poem is a form of writing which uses descriptive language to express certain feelings, views or ideas. Poems possess several unique characteristics that distinguish them from prose writing. This paper will use The Lamb, by William Blake to explain the distinguishing attributes of poetry. Poetry is a language of indirection in which the author's choice of words determines their ability to keep the reader engaged. Poems are composed of gathering strong emotions or essential experiences that are more complex than the usual statements. The language used should trigger the reader's agility to appreciate the choice of words that explain complex emotions most straightforwardly. For instance, in Blake's 'The Lamb' the author intends to express his complicated feelings towards God and Christianity (Apesos 400). The author chose this poem to express what he believed were true feelings towards the religion. The fourth line in the second stanza 'He is meek & he is mild,' refers to the teachings of Jesus in Mathew 5:5, commonly known as the Beatitudes. The words are used to illustrate God's love towards humanity and to educate on the social injustices. For any reader who has prior knowledge on the biblical teachings, it becomes easy for them to understand the deeper meaning in the author's choice of language indirection (Apesos 380).

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

The use of language indirection is also substantially evidenced in Samuel Coleridge, 'The rime of the ancient mariner.' Coleridge's choice of words represents his intention to create a solid imagination in the reader's mind. At the beginning of the poem, the audience is introduced to the Mariner, who is an ancient sailor with 'glittering eyes.' When the Mariner begins his narration o the wedding guest, it takes the reader to imagine life at sea most naturally and artistically. Once the noises from the wedding feast are close, the guest tries to escape the mariner in vain. The mariner's tale already sounds interesting to the reader and enhances their intention to keep reading the poem (McKusick 191).

Poetry also uses symbolism to provoke and maintain the reader's attention. A lamb is a submissive ye meek and daring animal. The lamb is used to portray an understanding of the religious and historical contexts, which present Jesus Christ as the lamb of God. Symbolism also aligns the attributes of the lamb to the Christian values of humility, peace, and meekness. Jesus' representation as the lamb also symbolizes the traditional use of lambs as sacrifices in Jewish communities to appease God. The poem's context is in a pastoral community, and thus the lamb is used to indicate its ability to sustain human life through physical needs such as food and other essential commodities of survival (Apesos 379).

In the poem, 'The rime of the ancient mariner,' the poet uses biblical and apocalyptic symbolism to express his ideas on the religion. Coleridge presents a personal revelation that the good will triumph over the evil, as a sign of the apocalypse. The poet use acceptance of all nature as part of God's creation portrays his stance on religion. Throughout the poem, Coleridge marvels at God's creation of the 'Evil Woman' and a mysterious wind that blows off the Mariner (McKusick 191). According to linguistic analysis, the poet must have been about the Christian definition of the Holy Spirit, who is powerful enough to shake the ground but also calm to enhance a smooth sail for God's creation. The reader is introduced to the Polar Spirit who "loved the bird that loved the man who shot him with his bow." This statement is a clear depiction of God and the crucifixion of Jesus Chris. God gave his beloved son (the bird) who loved humankind but human beings false fully crucified him. He also uses several symbols such as the sea and the waves to illustrate the Christian belief of God as the creator and sustainer of life. The use of the 'cross in a crossbow' hints on the nature of Christ's crucifixion. The poet says that Albatross was hung around the Mariner's neck like a crucifix. The Mariner's life is also symbolic in teaching on human nature and concurs with the biblical teachings on sin. The Mariner's journey is marked with several struggles and challenges which start with the murder of Albatross. The trip ends when he reaches the offshore in England and symbolizes the transmission of a soul from sin to redemption, following Christian teachings (McKusick 192).


Poetry is also distinguished from prose writing by the use of several themes in literature. Primarily, a theme refers to a concept or idea that repeatedly describes the subject of a poem. A theme bridges the gap between the persona's internal journey and external plot of the poem, thus linking the reader's and writer's mind to enhance reflections and understanding. The most dominant theme in William Blake's 'The lamb' is innocence. Blake uses a lamb and a child to introduce the concepts of vulnerability and innocence. The child innocently asks the lamb questions like 'who made thee,' but the lamb does not answer (Apesos 400). So the child goes ahead to answer the questions on behalf of the lamb. The child symbolically represents an innocent creature that has not been corrupted by various aspects of life such as religion and culture. In the second stanza, the lamb is provided with clothes of 'delight' which indicates that it not the usual apparel. The natural state of the lamb as dependent to his maker represents purity and reinforces the theme of innocence and vulnerability (Apesos 384). A prevalent theme in the ancient mariner's poem is imprisonment. The mariner's compelling eyes makes it impossible for the wedding guest even when they are tired of listening to his tales. After the mariner had killed Albatross, the ice became "mast high that the captain could not steer through it" which indicates the imprisonment of the sailors who could no longer talk to each other. The blowing winds and the boat separated them from the rest of the world, and they no longer had their freedom (McKusick 194).

Works cited

Apesos, Anthony. "The Poet in the Poem: Blake's Milton." Studies in Philology, vol. 112, no. 2, Spring 2015, pp. 379-413.

McKusick, James C. "Coleridge's Ancient Mariner." Wordsworth Circle, vol. 48, no. 4, Sept. 2017, pp. 191-194.

Cite this page

Poetry Essay Example. (2022, Aug 18). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/poetry-essay-example

Free essays can be submitted by anyone,

so we do not vouch for their quality

Want a quality guarantee?
Order from one of our vetted writers instead

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the ProEssays website, please click below to request its removal:

didn't find image

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience and 25% off!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism