Hello friends, we are going to deal with the poetry of Janayta Mahapatra. First, we will see
the historical and literary context in which Janayta Mahapatra wrote his poems, see his view
on poetry, read his poem, ‘A Missing Person’ as a prelude to two other poems, ‘Indian
Summer’ and ‘Lost.’ Analyze them and then conclude our presentation.
(Refer Slide Time: 00:39)
When it comes to the historical and literary context of Janayta Mahapatra there is something
very significant that Janayta Mahapatra often remembers the Kalinga War of 261, which
converted Ashoka to Buddhism to propagate peace in the world. And also have to remember
that the family of Janayta Mahapatra converted to Christianity when his forefathers had to go
through this Orissa Famine of 1866, when Mercy Camps were organized by Christian
missionaries. And because of this conversion Janayta Mahapatra’s father was able to give
good education to Janayta Mahapatra.
He attended an English missionary school in Orissa, which became a common practice in
India. Now, after this 1947 when India became independent, there was a focus on scientific
temper and science education. This is also important for us in the context of Janayta
Mahapatra, because he was a student of science, became a professor of physics in a college.
Throughout his life he was teaching physics. But he also got into poetry and wrote a number
At that time when Janayta Mahapatra was growing as a poet, we see the developments on the
East and also on the West. In the West, we have Bombay poets, like Nissim Ezekiel, Adil
Jussawalla, Gieve Patel, Eunice de Souza, Arun Kolatkar, and Dilip Chitre and many others.
And in the East, we have P. Lal and the Writer's Workshop in Calcutta, though it is closer to
Orissa that is Cuttack in the place, where Janayta Mahapatra lived, we find that the poet
Mahapatra led a very lonely life. He led a lonely poetic journey in Cuttack, a small town in
(Refer Slide Time: 02:45)
Mahapatra was born in 1928, he worked as a professor of physics in a college, but then he
chose to live as a poet of metaphysics. He started writing short stories in the beginning then
moved on to photography. When you found it expensive,finally, he landed in inexpensive
poetry at the age of 38. He started publishing his poems in international poetry magazines,
and slowly received great acclaim over the years. Initially, he was neglected in India, but with
the first Sahitya Academy Award for poetry in English for his volume, ‘Relationship’ in
1981, he began to get recognition as a serious poet in India and abroad.
He has 16 volumes of poetry. We have just mentioned a few here, Close the Sky, Ten by Ten
Suyamvara and Other Poems, A Rain of Rites, Life Signs. Some of the poems which are
popular are Indian Summer, Lost, Grandfather, Hunger, Steps in the Dark, A Rain of Rites.
(Refer Slide Time: 03:57)
What is poetry, according to Janayta Mahapatra? He has a statement in one of his essays,
“Poetry as Freedom: The Door” published in our Sahitya Academy journal, Indian literature
in 1992. For him, “poetry is a stranger within oneself.” What a wonderful definition of
“Poetry is a stranger within oneself- the man inside one is unaware of
and the poet is almost always in the quest of finding this other one. Therefore,
his questions, who am I? Where have I come from? And where is it I am
going? How should I live? How can I see that whom I had not seen before
clearly? Where are you, Other One? Have I no right to my death?”
These are fundamental questions that most people ask in their life. As a poet, he has raised
these questions and he has tried to find answers to these questions in his poems.
(Refer Slide Time: 05:04)
The first point we have for reading is ‘A Missing Person.’ It is a very short poem.
“In the darkened room,
cannot find her reflection in the mirror
waiting as usual
at the edge of sleep. 5
In her hands, she holds
the oil lamb
whose drunken yellow flames,
know where her lonely body hides” 9
It is a small poem about a lady in a dark place with an oil lamp. She is almost hidden in that
light of the lamp, only the lamp knows. That is why the lady is a missing person. Perhaps, it
may be understood that most of us are lost in this way, we are all missing persons. We may
also remember Adil Jussawalla’s poem called ‘Missing Person,’ he has actually a volume and
in almost all of Janayta Mahapatra’s poems we will find that kind of quest for the person who
(Refer Slide Time: 06:09)
Now, let us see ‘Indian Summer’ in detail. This is again a short poem.
“Over the soughing of the somber wind
priests chant louder than ever;
the mouth of India opens.
Crocodiles move into deeper waters.
Mornings of heated middens 5
smoke under the sun.
The good wife
lies in my bed
through the long afternoon
dreaming still, unexhausted 10
by the deep roar of funeral pyres.”
(Refer Slide Time: 06:41)
This short poem on Indian Summer, has many dramatic contrasts, which are at the center of
any poetic endeavor. We will start with Moan. This also can include m o u r n, that is why we
have put that word in brackets, mourn and chant man and God, surface and depth, sun and
smoke, wife and husband, sexuality and spirituality, light and dark, life, love and death,
dream and reality. How is that such a short poem has so many contrasts between various
central issues of human beings? The poem begins with the movement of the wind and the
chanting of mantras or songs for gods.The mouth of India opens and many other activities
happened during the summer. And these are all described; we will see some more details in
the next slide.
(Refer Slide Time: 07:49)
When we come to the poetic devices, we can notice that nuances which make up this poem,
we have yet transferred epithet in the first line ‘over the soughing of the sombre wind,’
sombre means sad, gloomy, the wind is not exactly gloomy, it is the poet's perception or it is
the speaker's perception of the morning. Alliteration, we have in the first line ‘soughing of the
sombre wind,’ sou – somber; then we have allusion, metaphor, pun in just this small phrase,
‘the mouth of India opens.’ Does this mouth of India refer to Krishna’s mouth opening to
Arjuna? Or does it refer to the mouth of Indian people, the hungry people ? We have this
allusion and metaphor because of this double or multiple reference we have this pun, mouth
of Krishna mouth of common people or mouth of the whole geography of India to the sunrise
in the morning. That is how the poem becomes very rich. We have alliteration in mornings of
Again, another alliteration in smoke under the sun. Assonance we have in these two lines put
together ‘the good wife lies in my bed,’ lies - my – wife: the same sound ‘I’ is found in all
these three cases. And then we have a metaphor in ‘an exhausted by the deep roar of f uneral
pyres.’ In the morning, we have the chanting of prayers for gods at the same time we have
pyres, funeral pyres roaring of pyres. That is how we see sunrise and then in the evening, we
have funeral pyres. We have sunrise in the morning and then funeral pyres in the evening.
Light - life, love - life and then death in the evening. This is the kind of image that Mahapatra
builds up throughout the poem.
Then we have consonants in roar of funeral pyres. The first ‘r’ actually could be alliteration,
but the other ‘r’s in the middle or in the end. Then lastly, we have another allusion that is
allusion to sati ‘in by the deep roar of funeral pyres.’ Some critics have observed that the
bodies of women burning in the funeral pyres may refer to the good wife, the practice of the
sati in good olden days.
(Refer Slide Time: 10:35)
Let us see the rhyme, rhythm and meter in this poem. This is a poem in free verse, so we do
not have complete rhyme scheme in this. We have of course, some partial rhymes in opens
middens, waters and pyres and the rhythm of this poem is conversational speech pattern and
the meter is irregular. We can at best say polymetrical, because it has I am, trochee, spondee
and variations in line length.
We also have Caesura, Enjambment and End-Stopped Lines; we can see all of them in the
extract that we have.
“The good wife
lies in my bed
through the long afternoon
dreaming still un exhausted
by the deep roar of funeral pyres.”
So, we have 1 foot plus; that is one syllable is extra in the first line, 2 feet in the second line,
3 feet in the third line, 3 plus one extra is there, 3 plus feet in the third line and then in the
fourth line we have 5 feet ‘by the deep roar of fu neral pyers.’ So we have actually
We have mentioned the names of these various rhythmic patterns. I am, trochee, spondee and
given the examples for you, so that you can understand; I am, which means unstressed stress
trochee, which means stressed and unstressed and spondee means both words are stressed.
(Refer Slide Time: 12:09)
Now let us see the overall impression of this poem. This poem is a descriptive poem of an
Indian Summer, which is oppressive for devotees, crocodiles, householders and everybody
else. It is a general climate. The morning brings a sad wind, moaning while the priests chant
loudly to wake up gods and whole country. The shore-sojourned crocodiles move into the
deep waters to escape from the hot sun, and also the smoke from the middens.
The good housewife rests on the speaker's bed in the afternoon, thinking of the burning dead
bodies in the ghat, that is the burning ghat. The speaker's view of the early morning is
gloomy, to say the least, perhaps, suggesting that the starving people do not have much hope
to fill their stomach.
Even other people may not have much scope to live or hope to live on this year. The Indian
summer is then the poverty-stricken oppressive India, with which Janayta Mahapatra was
very familiar from the view of the speaker and the poet. The unrhymed verse, this jointed
rhythm, an irregular meter in this poem reveals the inequalities in the Indian society.
(Refer Slide Time: 13:32)
Let us move on to the second poem we have for discussion; this is called ‘Lost.’
“Here I have learned to recognize you
at a distance,
the evening heavy,
the half-light wandering around the room.
I’ve wanted to know what lulling silence 5
can bloom in my hands,
what pain and pleasure your mind can wear
through the intrigues at my fingertips.
(Refer Slide Time: 13:58)
I watch your body ease of the seasons
stretched out on the stone of my breath. 10
My hands move on
inside the lines on my moving palms
is it time being sent back to somewhere far behind
on the edge of dream? 15
Is it that
which quietly shuts my eyes?
(Refer Slide Time: 14:17)
And outside my hands, where,
your body keeps shrinking in space,
the first faith of some child goes wrong
like some defect in a mechanical toy;
yet what does it lead to?
To what fateful encounter?
Like a misplaced watch, this half-light.
Where was I when I lost it?”
This is a kind of quest for something lost that Mahapatra wants to find out.
(Refer Slide Time: 14:45)
Let us see the Thematic Contrast now between Lost and Found. Maybe temporarily found but
lost very often. Evening and morning, half-light and half dark, silence and speech, pain and
pleasure these two words are brought together in this poem, so we do not have dif ficulty in
finding the contrast. These two words are brought together in the same line. Body and spirit,
dream and reality, space and time, which is represented by the watch misplaced watch at the
end of the poem, faith and doubt, faithful and happy, love and death.
(Refer Slide Time: 15:26)
This poem has quite a few poetic devices. We can see something like a personification in this
line, ‘the half-light wandering around the room;’ the light wandering, like a person without
any kind of destination, just wandering around. We have metaphors in these four lines,
“what lulling silence
can bloom in my hands?
bloom like a flower,
what pain and pleasure your mind can wear
through the intrigues at my fingertips.”
So, this bloom and wear can metaphorically referred to some strange feelings of silence and
speech or disturbed mind that the poet has.
We have a metaphor in ‘stretched out on the stone of my breath,’ breath is abstract, but we
have stone which is solid concrete. So, life which is evanescent, short, the poet is able to or
attempts to capture it as a strong rock or stone. We have rhetorical questions; we have many
more but we have listed only two here. Is it time being sent back to somewhere far behind on
the edge of dream?
Is it that which quietly shuts my eyes? When the point are so many questions like this without
answers, certainly, we can find a quester. He wants to know more and more. Why is this
silence? Why is this life? Why is this suffering? Why is this death, misery, poverty in himself
and the people around him? We have a metaphor in ‘the first faith of some child goes wrong’
and similes in the next two lines, like some defect in a mechanical toy, and like a misplaced
watch this half-light. This half-light, watch time, some vision, some kind of person, so what
is this, what is it lost.? Imagination or poem, or the muse or the muse that comes through the
form of a lady and it is considered to be a poem dealing with love and love for a lady our love
for poem love for human beings. Love for Mahapatra himself, love for creativity. It is a
beautiful poem with so many possibilities.
(Refer Slide Time: 17:54)
Let us see the rhyme, rhythm and meter. This is also a free verse and so it does not have any
rhyme at all. We have the conversational rhythm in this poem with a lot of introspection. That
is why we have put it into perspective tone, or atmosphere. In the case of meter, we find that
line length varies from 3 syllables to 13 syllables, so we can call it irregular meter. And then,
we have enjambment and end-stopped lines in this extract.
“Here I have learnt to re cognize you
at a distance,
the eve ning hea vy,
the half-light wa ndering round the room.
silence and speech, evening and morning life death. Janayta Mahapatra believes in some kind
of threshold, he is caught between the two, and he captures the pull or the conflict between
the life that he knows and the death he does not know. The life that he understands and the
death, he does not understand.
(Refer Slide Time: 19:00)
Let us see the overall impression of this poem. This is a lyrical poem of lost half-light, that is
what we find at the beginning, and also at the end, lost half-light. Where is it? Where was I
when I lost it? He asked the question at the end. This is a lyrical poem of lost half-light, love,
imagination, focusing on the talent of lovers, poets to recognize their love, poem even at a
It is the speaker's voice about the physical intimacy of the lover and beloved, which is a
strange exploration of the psychological depths of pleasure and pain, and what they can do to
the mind and body of both participants, especially the speaker. The p hysical body of the
beloved is lost in space, which is a shock similar to what a child would feel when something
goes wrong in a mechanical toy.
Words like my hands, my eyes, my fingertips and your body, your eyes - betray the sexual
mystical aspect of the love, which finally leads to the fateful encounter, perhaps with the
death. Metaphors, similes, and rhetorical questions add to the subtlety of the pathetic sense of
loss in the poem.
(Refer Slide Time: 20:15)
When I started writing poetry, I had a chance to read one of the essays of Janayta Mahapatra,
in a magazine called ‘Span.’ After reading that essay of his experience in the United States, I
wrote this poem ‘On communion’ and so I dedicated this poem for Mahapatra. Just I want to
share this with you. How he could influence me and he has influenced many other poets in
India and abroad.
“When you walk through the city streets,
You are bound to feel a shudder in your trails,
As if you have bumped into a snake
That has stretched along to block your way. 4
When you walk through that thick forests,
You are bound to feel a shudder all over you;
Even if several snakes slide along
You are elevated to the company of joy. 8
(Refer Slide Time: 21:03)
When you know, where the difference is
Between the absent and present snakes,
You come face to face with a mystery
Which you can swim through, but not state. 12
When you arrive at the pool of silence
Where no thoughts intrude into your being,
You are one with the spirits of the universe
Of the past and future of all corners of the world. 16
I wrote this poem and published this in my second volume called ‘Purpose of Life.’
(Refer Slide Time: 21:31)
To give you a summary of our discussion on Janayta Mahapatra’s poems that we have
discussed, let us recall. We have looked into the historical and literary context in which
Janayta Mahapatra wrote his poems. He remembers two historical incidents, one ‘The
Kalinga War’ and other ‘The Famine’ in 1866, which affected both these incidents affected
the whole land. And he grew up in a Christian family, with good education became a
professor of physics and start writing poems are at a late stage.
He has his own questions about what is poetry, he says, his poetry is a poetry of suggestion,
not your point of statement, as we can see in Nissim Ezekiel and other poets. We saw three
poems, one we read ‘A Missing Person,’ two, we discussed ‘Indian Summer’ and ‘Lost’ and
in the two poems that we have discussed, we find the unique qualities of Janayta Mahapatra
dealing with the famous or most important questions of life, what am I? Where am I? What
am I doing? Where am I going to?
These are questions all of us ask, but some poets like Janayta Mahapatra, try to give some
answers. We analyze them and gave our overall impressions. And then we have one more
quotation here from Janayta Mahapatra; he has an essay called ‘Mystery as Mantra letters
from Orissa’ published in World Literature Today in 1994. This also tells us about a cen tral
problem in Janayta Mahapatra. He says,
“one must try somehow to reach the border between things
understandable and un-understandable. Things understandable and un-
understandable in a poem, between life and death, between a straight
line and a circle.”
Life is like that; it is not a straight line; it is not a circle; it is a mix of the two and what is that
in between we have to understand. Let us see some references now.
(Refer Slide Time: 23:40)
Hope, you will be able to get some of them. At least the ones published in Indian literature,
certainly all of us can access through our ‘J Store database.’ Hope you will be able to read them and appreciate more of Janayta Mahapatra’s poems. Thank you.
Hello friends, we have come to the last lecture of our course on poetry, of course we will have
some panel discussion that will come after this. But as far as poems and poets are concerned this
is the last lecture. And we have chosen a poet called Rukmini Bhaya Nair. First, we will see the
historical and literary context, see the life of Rukmini Bhaya Nair, read two of her poems,
analyze them and then offer our conclusions.
(Refer Slide Time: 0:44)
Let us see the historical and literary context. We have had a number of women struggles in the
postcolonial context in our country. We also have a number of cases of women’s insecurity
across the country, now and then repeatedly cases of women’s problems arise particularly with
reference to raping of women, violence against women. We have male writers in English, we
have poets and also other writers in novel in shortstory and other art forms after independence.
We have also built up, establish a poetic tradition, we have looked at the pioneers Nissim Ezekiel
and Kamala Das. We also briefly referred to the influence of feminist poets like Plath, Sexton,
and Adrienne Rich when we discussed feminist poetry, and also, we referred to Kamala Das’s
poetry. We have moved, that is our writers have moved from reserved expression to open f orms
of acknowledgement of women’s experiences.
Ours is, we have to admit a traditionalsociety but our women have learned to express themselves
over a period of time. The body politics of poetry by women in India referred to mothering,
wifely duties, objectification, and stereotyping. We have women writers from all walks of lif e,
including academics. The poet we have chosen is from the academic field.
(Refer Slide Time: 2:20)
Rukmini Bhaya Nair is a living poet, she was born in 1952, she studied linguistics and became a
professor of linguistics at IIT Delhi. She also has written novels and critical works. She is a
widely traveled writer and academist. She has also published both academic and creative works.
The 2 volumes which are well known are ‘The Hyoid Bone’ and ‘Yellow Hibiscus.’ Very
interestingly, she has a reason for writing; to discover the limits of language; actually, to find out
the limits of our own expressive ability; that is what most of us try to do.
(Refer Slide Time: 3:06)
We have two poems for discussion, one is called “Reprisal,” another is called “Margins,
Mainstream.” The first poem ‘Reprisal’ is a 14-line poem in what looks like three quatrains. It
explores the possibility of revenge against the oppressors of women. We also have the second
poem ‘Margins, Mainstream;’ it is a 16-lines poem in four stanzas. It questions the dichotomy to
reveal the oppressive patriarchal language, especially punctuation marks and poetic conventions.
It dreams of a new language suitable for women like Adrienne Rich did; both poems are f rom
‘Yellow Hibiscus’ publish in 2004. These poems can be found in one website for which we have
given the reference poetryinternational.org.
(Refer Slide Time: 3:57)
First let us see the poem ‘Reprisal.’
I, who have never known
Violence, see at nights
This - the moon - thugs
Finishing off a woman.
Mostly she is eyes 5
Minus the other marks
That make up a face. And
Her sari, winding red, tears
(Refer Slide Time: 4:18)
All my childhood, I slept 10
With a knife tucked under
Two pillows, for safety.
And that crescent still glistens.
(Refer Slide Time: 4:29)
Let us see the Thematic Contrast. It is simple poem but then we have many contrasting ideas
violence and silence, woman and man, self and body, laughter and tear (cry), childhood and
adulthood, security and insecurity, beneficent and maleficent. The theme of reprisal, retaliation,
revenge and anger all these ideas are found in this poem. This is more of a poem of statement
about a women’s anger about violence against women.
(Refer Slide Time: 5:04)
Let us spend some more time on the Theme on Reprisal. It refersto retaliation, revenge, giving
back more than that is received. Women are sexually attacked by moon thugs. And that is why
the poet, that is the speaker has a crescent knife for safety under her pillow. Reprisal actually is
again a revision of perspective on women, men and moon imagery in literature. Moon is
considered to be very soft pleasant used in the context of romantic love between a man and a
woman. But a poet like Rukmini Bhaya Nair and others who are attracted or oppressed by men,
they have a new understanding or a different understanding of the moon.
(Refer Slide Time: 5:52)
We said this is a poem of statement; we do not have many poetic devices but certainly we f ind
images that is why, we call all of them imagery, except the last one alliteration ‘minus other
marks.’ We have the images of violence against women, mutilated body, winding red, tearing
sari, audible tears, knife under pillows, glistening knife. Which are actually evocative; we can
really see, imagine, see such pictures.
(Refer Slide Time: 6:23)
Let us look at Rhyme, Rhythm, and Meter in this poem. It is a free verse but then it has some
kind of restraint in the form of a sonnet, though it is not a traditional sonnet. We do not have
obvious rhymes in this poem; when it comes to the rhythm, we find that the rhythmic pattern
may be found in iamb, trochee, spondee and the metrical pattern is polymetrical, because the
lines vary from 4 to 7 syllables. We have caesura, enjambment, and end- stopped line in this
Let us see the example that we have.
“All my childhood I slept
With a knife tucked under
Two pillows for safety
And that crescent still glistens
Trochee, example is ‘childhood,’ iamb ‘I slept,’ for spondee, we have this example ‘two pi,’ Pi-
here is the firstsyllable from pillows and then we have anapest ‘with a knife and dactyl tucked
under.’ In the case of anapest, the stress falls on knife and in the case of dactyl, the stress falls on
(Refer Slide Time: 7:36)
Let us see the Diction and Syntax in this poem. We have 4 to 7 syllables in the poetic lines in the
poem. Most lines are very short. And we have the embedded ‘that clause’ in all three stanzas in
the poem. This poem deals with the complex problem but gives a simple solution of revenge.
The revengeful feeling is strong but clear and steady. The rhythm is steady and also focused. The
question is, is revenge a solution? As a reader, we may ask the poet or the speaker may give a
solution like revenge.
But we also have the responsibility to raise a question is revenge a solution? It is actually a
complex problem but then, we also have to see the other perspective the other view point. That is
exactly the function of poetry to make us feel empathetic to the sufferings of others. We have to
ask this question or understand the problem how long can women remain silent. How long will
they take on all the pains, violence that are inflicted on them.
(Refer Slide Time: 8:45)
To give an overall impression of this poem, the speaker is an observer and a participant in a
patriarchal society, unleashing violence against women. The violent image of a women being
assaulted and left in a pool of blood provokes the speaker to protect herself and avenge the
The speaker attempts in a subtle way to revise the thought process of representing women as soft
in association with moon which the poet turns against the thugs with her crescent knife. Perhaps
this poem on reprisal is a poetic revenge and caution too. We all readers have to see the other
point of view.
(Refer Slide Time: 9:28)
Now, we are moving to the second poem ‘Margins, Mainstream.’ It has 4 stanzas, first we have
the 2 stanzas, then we will look at the next 2 stanzas.
“A woman is a thing apart.
She is bracketed off, a
Comma, semi colon, at most
A lower-case letter, lost. 4
In the literate circus
She is just a striptease
Artist, but when she speaks
Her poems bite, ferocious. 8
(Refer Slide Time: 10:00)
Rhyme and shape, primitive
Beasts, come tamed to her
Endangered species, they
Recognize her desperation. 12
She wants, she badly wants
Not a fresh lover, strongman
Or clown, but a new language
In which to hold her own.” 16
The whole poem is something like this; a woman is a thing apart to hold her own. The f irst line
of the poem and the last phrase in the poem, we can make one sentence, ‘a woman is a thing
apart to hold her own.’ She is not a woman as we have normally thought about, the new woman
we see in the post liberalized economy is a thing apart to hold her own.
(Refer Slide Time: 10:48)
Let us see the Thematic Contrast. Obviously in the title we have margin and mainstream, man
and woman, Patriarchal language and matriarchal experience. The speaker uses the patriarchal
language against it. Even punctuation marks are oppressive for the poet; A striptease artist,
entertaining artist and a poet, that is a biting ferocious poet. She and they are contrasted. Her
need is a new language, their need is lust or power. Old and new language we have the contrast.
(Refer Slide Time: 11:28)
Let us see some of the Poetic Devices in this poem. Reification is a term opposite of
personification; a woman is a thing apart when something is objectified that is called reification.
We have a metaphor in considering a woman as a punctuation mark. We also have a metaphor in
striptease artist and poet and another metaphor we have in literate circus, she is a ferocious
lioness. Then we have a revisionary thought in her need is not a lover but a new language.
A woman is expected always to have a man as a support for her in a patriarchal society but in the
new society women look for a new language not men to support them. This is then a self-aware
poem, it is aware of its own linguistics and poetic devices; there is a special emphasis on
punctuation marks and rhyme and shape of the entire poem.
(Refer Slide Time: 12:34)
When we come to Rhyme, Rhythm, and Meter, we can see that this is a free verse with a good
shape in quatrains. There is no obvious rhyme in this poem. And when we look at rhythm, we
see that the line length varies from 6 to 8 syllables as we have 6 syllables and 8 syllables
referring to trimeter and tetrameter with a dominance of this iambic, we can say that this poem is
in the form of iambic trimeter and tetrameter.
We also have caesura, enjambment, and end-stopped line in this extract that we have quoted
“In the literate circus
She is just a striptease
Artist, but when she speaks
Her poems bite ferocious.”
Trochee has this example of ‘artist’ with the first syllable being stressed and iamb in ‘she
speaks.’ The second syllable is stressed in she speaks.
(Refer Slide Time: 13:36)
Let us pay attention to Diction and Syntax of this poem to understand it little more. The whole
poem is largely in mono and disyllabic words. We have certain polysyllabic words as well like
bracketed, semicolon, ferocious, primitive, endangered, recognize, desperation. We also have
declarative and compound and complex sentences in this short poem. It is a smooth and clear
rhythm that we have in this poem representing or referring to a new language.
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