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Essay - A Noiseless Patient Spider

Essay - A Noiseless Patient Spider

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Published by Thalita Carvalho

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Published by: Thalita Carvalho on Apr 08, 2011
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01/23/2015

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 Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
Faculdade de Letras
Introdução às Literaturas de Língua Inglesa
A Noiseless Patient Spider 
by Walt Whitman and the search of meaning
Professor: Marcel LimaAlumni: Thalita de Carvalho Pereira
Belo Horizonte/MG2011
 
A Noiseless Patient Spider 
by Walt Whitman and the search of meaningOne of the themes explored in the poem
A Noiseless Patient Spider 
by WaltWhitman is the search for meaning in life, for sustenance for the soul. In thisessay I¶ll indicate the points that direct to this conclusion.Walt Whitman¶s poem
A Noiseless Patient Spider 
is written in two five-linestanzas in free verse, which means it has no metrical pattern or end rhyme.However the poet uses other kinds of pattern and figures of speech to giveemphasis, balance and rhythm to it.The first stanza of the poem is talking about the spider. In the first verse thepoet defines the spider as ³
A Noiseless, patient spider´ 
; making use of thefigure of speech personification. The speaker is explaining how he observersthe spider in her solitary exploration of the vacant space by means of buildingher web, which she does in order to capture insects that are her nourishment: ³
mark¶d, where, on a little promontory, it stood, isolated: / Mark¶d how, to explorethe vacant, vast surrounding, / It launch¶d forth filament, filament, filament, out of itself; / Ever unreeling them-ever tirelessly speeding them.´ 
We can notice theuse of alliteration in line three:
acant ±
ast 
, and line four:
 
orth,
ilament,
ilament,
ilament 
; which gives rhythm to the poem, despite the absence of metrical pattern and rhymes.In the second stanza the poet is talking to his soul, as indicated by the firstverse: ³
And you, O my soul, where you stand´.
In this stanza, he points out thathis soul is in the middle of infinite spaces, searching for a meaning, for somekind of connection that shall nourish it:
³Surrounded, detached, in measurelessoceans of space, / Ceaselessly musing, venturing, throwing, - seeking, thespheres, to connect them; / Till the bridge you need, be form¶d ± till the ductileanchor hold; / Till the gossamer thread you fling, catch somewhere, O my soul.
´The use of alliteration is also present in the second stanza in lines six andseven:
s
tand,
s
urroun
ed,
etached 
. The poet also anaphora in this stanza bythe repetition of 
till 
in lines nine and ten.

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