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Sample Explication of Photograph

Sample Explication of Photograph

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Published by Danika Barker
Sample poetry explication
Sample poetry explication

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Published by: Danika Barker on Jun 29, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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01/29/2014

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This Is A Photograph of MeBy Margaret AtwoodIt was taken some time ago.At first it seems to bea smeared print: blurred lines and grey flecks blended with the paper;then, as you scanit, you see in the left-hand corner a thing that is like a branch: part of a tree(balsam or spruce) emergingand, to the right, halfway upwhat ought to be a gentleslope, a small frame house.In the background there is a lake,and beyond that, some low hills.(The photograph was takenthe day after I drowned.I am in the lake, in the center of the picture, just under the surface.It is difficult to say where precisely, or to sayhow large or small I am:the effect of water on light is a distortion but if you look long enough,eventuallyyou will be able to see me.)In the poem, “This is a Photograph of Me,” Margaret Atwood illustrates the conflict between appearance and reality. The speaker begins by describing what appears to be a black and white photograph of a lake and trees, but then surprises the reader by sayingthat the picture was taken the day after she died and that she is, in fact, in the picture beneath the surface of the lake. The death that Atwood describes can be read either literally, as though the speaker is speaking from beyond the grave, or metaphoricallyAtwood’s poem is an example of a reflective or meditative lyric in which the poet movesfrom the concrete (the photograph) to a more abstract and universal idea, that of the ideaof being seen and understood. The title of the poem reads as the first line of the poem

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