Poem Analysis In Philippine Literature

Submitted by: Don M. Velasquez .

Submitted to: Sir Miller Duron March 02, 2009

Dream of Knives By Alfred A. Yuson 1. What is the poet saying? The poet is somehow relating to us the father and son relationship in the poem. He uses a symbolism and that is a knife for a reason. In a knife, it has features that make the son happy. He also says the expression of paternal love to his son. Realization on the poem also considers due to the father’s frustration for the reason that he had nothing to offer to his son most especially the ideal gift and that is the knife. a. What are the key ideas, feelings, impressions, or events presented? The key ideas of this poem are that knife has its own significant function on the masculinity of man most especially to the son and the father. In this poem, it has two divisions that we must consider and analyze. The first one is that when the father is dreaming about the gift which is the knife that was given to his son. Then the second division is the awakening. In this division, you can see on how father realize that he has no gift to his son. And because of theses, he was not able to solve this problem. The feeling that is presented in the story is somehow being hopeful and grateful at first because he was having this fulfillment that will make his son happy. Next was the pleasure that it will bring to them because the knife signifies something to them. Lastly, the father’s feeling of disappointment. Because of the situation that he did not satisfy this wish or desire for his son. The impression presented is somewhat practical or stereotype of a father figure to a son. Because some of the Filipinos today, they do not have this connection between father and son. Because somehow, we saw many parents especially the father nowadays that they are busy that they rarely show their love for their son. And because of this, they lost the father figure in them. Moreover, the hope of the father is also shown in the poem that it is never late to dream and make this wish happen. The events presented are can be observed nowadays. With a typical family mostly the broken family whose they lost, for the children, the paternal love a father. It is somehow related to us all. b. What is the main idea or theme of this poem? The subject matter on the poem is that knives show the paternal love for his siblings specifically to his son. It shows that the knife is being represented the masculinity and the greatness of a man. The theme also of the poem is that the knife has these special features like it is a tool for bonding or for lay men term, it is the things that boys only do. And the sense of individualism (sense of independence) that the characters must attain. 2. How is the poet saying? The poet does saying this with a purpose. And that purpose is for us to learn that it is not too late to fulfill the wish of a father’s unconditional love to his son. The poet is making messages in the poem in its two divisions, the awakening and the dreaming. And in this poem, you can see how it was written and how it was being expressed for the reader to empathize what he meant. a. Who is the speaker in the poem? The speaker who is relating the message is the author itself that represents the strong desire of a father. To further knowledge, it can be also the dads who is longing for their son to hear their voice deep within. b. What form has the poet used? What sound techniques has the poet used? There are forms that the poet used in the poem. It has three specific forms. On form is that it as bio form wherein A poem written about one self's life, personality traits, and ambitions. Another one is the free verse form wherein poetry written in either rhyme or unrhymed lines that has no set fixed metrical pattern. And lastly, the lyric form where s poem that expresses the

thoughts and feelings of the poet. The sound techniques has the poet used that you might be familiar with is alliteration. This procedure is used by starting three or more words with the same sound. c. What appeals to the senses has the poet used? What words help the reader see, hear, feel, taste, and smell the things being described? Images, symbolism, and representation are the things that appeals to the senses that the poet used. It used the symbolism of knife as an instrument for a father and son tandem. This image somehow gives us a clear glimpse that a knife is not just used as cooking but it is a tool for bonding. The words that helps us are dream, knife, woke, happiness, and sharp. In these words, we could see, hear and feel the author wants to point out. With the words being placed in the poem, it gives a great impact in the message. d. What figurative language has the poet used to create word pictures? Actually the poet uses climax wherein it is a figure of speech, in which words, phrases, or clauses are arranged in order of increasing importance. Hyperbole also was used that it may be used to evoke strong feelings or to create a strong impression, but is rarely meant to be taken literally. Next is apostrophe where it is an exclamatory rhetorical figure of speech, when a talker or writer breaks off and directs speech to an imaginary person or abstract quality or idea. Lastly, a rhetorical question is a figure of speech in the form of a question posed for its persuasive effect without the expectation of a reply. But the dominant figurative speech used was which the symbolism of knife is. 3. What is your conclusion about the poem’s meaning and effect? Was it an effective poem? What aspects of the poet’s ideas and craft do you appreciate? Would you recommend this poem to a friend? Why or why not? This one-of-a-kind masterpiece has the power to let us further consider what a father wants to his child. We all know that fathers are rarely expressed their love for their son but in this poem, it was contradicting that principle. Because a father wants to offer a gift to his son because he wants his son to be happy. But why knife? Knife is used by Yuson because it is a source of masculinity of a son and a father. Knife is not used as equipment but it used as a tool. In a way, it is a tool for connection (it is like a boy or men thing) then it is also used as an individualism of each person (we saw the sense of independence of a father and his son). The effect of the poem is somewhat a realization for all of us that we must stay hopeful and we must have a passion with regards to our wishes and desires. For the fathers, it seems to be their voice that paternal love is never been lost to them. Yes. It is a good and effective poem that one must read especially the fathers and also the sons. I like the message of the poem most especially on how a knife relates to the feelings of a father. I do appreciate the fact that Yuson takes consider the dads in the whole world. Yes, I would recommend this poem not just to a friend but also the persons whom they had lost their love and trust and also respect to their father. That it is not too late to change. 4. In a three paragraph composition, write a three-paragraph composition about the poem. Dream of Knives is a poem written by Alfred Yuson that which he emphasize the unconditional ardor to his son. It is sort of a weird and rare poem because we rarely see a poem written for the father and son. And this poem has it. And Yuson properly represents this relationship with a knife as a representation. Yuson uses knife, for the reason that it has this wonderful features that makes the son pleased. Consciousness on the poem also take into account due to the father’s dissatisfaction for the reason that he had nothing to offer to his son most especially the ideal gift and that is the knife. Yuson divided the poem into two which is the dreaming stage wherein he utters the longing of a father to his son thru the gift he wants to offer to him. Second division is the awakening stage wherein the father realized that this longing is somehow disappointing but there is a solution behind it. The situation of the poem is somehow related to all of us Filipinos particularly those who are in a broken family who’s

the father are not that close to his son. Knife represents the bonding between them and Yuson makes it a point that we must aware that fathers really longing for love of his child and also the love of a father for the sons. Yuson is saying the poem with purpose, motive, and reason. He uses the poem in expressing the intention creatively. He made use of three forms of poem for me. It is the free verse, bio, and lyric form in the poem. They are all similar in nature because they want to make the poem as simple as possible and with the complete intention of the poet in the content. The speaker for the poem is all the fathers specially the ones who are longing for their children. He uses alliteration to make the poem sounds great. He also placed many figurative speeches and one of that is symbolism which is the knife. And the metaphor that explains on how the knife is related to the father and son relationship. Also rhetoric questions that a figure of speech in the form of a question posed for its persuasive effect without the expectation of a reply. The conclusion on this poem is really for the father to not further agonize their hardships that they must show their paternal love fast to their children before it’s too late. Longing is seems to be difficult but if you want your child to be happy, spend time with them and bond with them. Knife represents not just equipment but a tool. A tool for bonding and a tool for independence so you can see the feeling of masculinity of man because of this.

Man of Earth By Amador Daguio 1. What is the poet saying? The poet is pronouncing about what certainly is the basis of our life and what the end result from that basis of life is. It speaks about the old story of “Si Malakas at si Maganda”, a Filipino story of creation. It as well says about a bamboo that can be compared to us most specially the Filipino people. Bamboo is not just an ordinary plant that we must regret. It has features and most especially its awesome characteristics that made us similar to them. And one by one Daguio reveals it. On the last part, he wants us to choose if we want to be like a man or like a bamboo. But the decision is still with us. And in this, we try to figure out the answer on the poem. c. What are the key ideas, feelings, impressions, or events presented? The main idea for this poem is what can be the basis of man’s individuality and characteristic. The subject matter is that we must reflect and try to dig deep to ourselves and relate ourselves with a bamboo. In what way we are comparable with the bamboo and can we have differences for that. The key idea is that the real basis of life or where we came from is from the bamboo that which is followed on the story of “Si Malakas at si Maganda”. The story is based that a man and a woman does born inside a bamboo. And the characteristics where the same with the bamboo. But how his it true and can we proved it. The feeling is to some extent is kind of confusing because at first, the poet seem to reinforce us that we came from the bamboo and to some aspect, we inherit the characteristics of the bamboo because we came from it. Because on the first stanza, it really meant for the basis of man on where it was originated. Although the poem suggested the bamboo, others distinguish it to scientific and religion theories. The impression is quite unrealistic to the fact that it has insufficient evidences that we came from the bamboo. Although we have some theories about the origin of man but this kind of thing is not yet proven by science or by religion. The event presents on how the origin of life was based. So as we can see, it is the story on how we are made and became a human being on earth. d. What is the main idea or theme of this poem? It put into words about a bamboo is compared to us because of its characteristics and function and one of that is its flexibility. The idea of this is that in every situation, may it is good or bad, we must be flexible at all times. Likely, we must be tough as a bamboo in order to us to survive the storm. This poem gives us a glimpse on how we are supposed to live our lives from birth until now that we are experiencing lots of struggles and dilemma. 2. How is the poet saying? a. Who is the speaker in the poem? The speaker of the poem is himself and the whole humanity. Because, we are all indeed want to know our basis of life or our origin. And this poem discussed one of the possibilities that we came for this source. b. What form has the poet used? What sound techniques has the poet used? The form used by the poet is a ballad type of poem that is a poem that tells a story similar to a folk tail or legend which often has a repeated refrain. Also he used Rhyme form wherein a rhyming poem has the repetition of the same or similar sounds of two or more words, often at the end of the line. And lastly, it is also a narrative form due to a poem that tells a story. He uses rhyming words as a sound technique that makes it more formal and artistic.

c. What appeals to the senses has the poet used? What words help the reader see, hear, feel, taste, and smell the things being described? Images, symbolisms and emotions felt on the poem are appealing to the senses that the poet used. It uses the symbol of bamboo. And bamboo in fact has the same trait and attributes as with us. The words that for me is considered to help the reader see, hear, feel, taste, and smell things being described are bamboo, bend, flexibility, and man. These words would complete the main idea of the poem. It gain the understanding of the message that the poem must have in able for the reader to see it. d. What figurative language has the poet used to create word pictures? It uses metaphors as the figurative speech in this poem because of the comparison of man and the bamboo in the aspect of individuality and functions. It also has the following figurative speeches: allegory in which an extended metaphor in which a story is told to illustrate an important attribute of the subject. Then apostrophe where addressing a thing, an abstraction or a person not present. Next is hermeneia wherein repetition for the purpose of interpreting what has already been said. Lastly, innuendo in which having a hidden meaning in a sentence that makes sense whether it is detected or not. 3. What is your conclusion about the poem’s meaning and effect? Was it an effective poem? What aspects of the poet’s ideas and craft do you appreciate? Would you recommend this poem to a friend? Why or why not? The poem states that we are really like a bamboo that we can adopt in every situation that we encounter and will encounter in our daily lives. It said that bamboo is so strong and flexible, it only determines that Filipinos are strong-willed and strong-faith persons that whatever happens on us, we make sure that we stood strong enough to face the most undesirable problems the we can experience. In this poem, we must choose if we want to be a bamboo or a human. But of course, we choose to be human than to be a bamboo. Why it is so? Because we have limitations unlike the bamboo that it just follows without complaining. Moreover, humans are much greater than bamboo in some aspects. Furthermore, we can appreciate more the beauty of the world if we became humans and choose to be humans. This poem also utters the difference between a myth and a creation story. Yes, it is an effective poem because I appreciate that he represent and discussed about bamboo not just an ordinary plant but a living thing that can have a relation with us, humans through characteristics and values. Determining the deeper meaning of the poem per stanza is the aspect of the poet’s craft that I do appreciate. Yes. I would recommend this to all. Since this poem is a kind of reality check and somehow a basis for our best asset as a Filipino which is being tough and being “madiskarte sa buhay”. 4. In a three paragraph composition, write a three-paragraph composition about the poem. The poem is called Man of Earth written by Amador Daguio that tackles about the basis of our life which is we are came from the bamboo which is inspired by the story of “Si Malakas at Maganda”. It talks about a bamboo which we originated from and we inherit this plant’s function and characteristics. Flexibility is the characteristic that all Filipinos have and bamboos have. But since we are human in nature, we are much greater than bamboo. Since bamboo has limitations compared to human, we have a great advantage over it in some aspect. It differentiates the difference between myths from a story of creation. The poem is in the ballad form which tells a story similar to a folk tail or legend. Also he used Rhyme form wherein a rhyming poem has the repetition of the same or similar sounds of two or more words, often at the end of the line. Rhyming words adds spice and artistic edge of the poem. Then we also consider to poem to be a narrative form due to a poem that tells a story. It uses symbolic representations like a bamboo and it revolves around that image. Figurative language like metaphor gave it a twist and color. Then allegory in which an extended metaphor in which a story is told to

illustrate an important attribute of the subject. Then apostrophe where addressing a thing, an abstraction or a person not present. Next is hermeneia wherein repetition for the purpose of interpreting what has already been said. Lastly, innuendo in which having a hidden meaning in a sentence that makes sense whether it is detected or not. Man of Earth talks about us and we are the speaker for this poem. It makes use of representations and emotions for us to constantly understand what the poet in truth say for his message. Flexibility is one of the words that could complete the idea of the poem because for that instance, it helps the readers to know the things that are needed to be describe. Man of Earth emphasize more not on the basis of life but on how we originated our values and characteristics. Bamboo is a great representation for it because it can bend when wind passes to it. And for the Filipinos, it is a sign of determination and urge to stand up whenever there are problems existing. Man of Earth is a very interesting yet very brilliant poem that gives us a sense of reality check of our character and personality. I learned in the poem that it is not easy to be a man for some reasons but most likely it is not that easy to be a bamboo that has limitations.

Bringing the Dolls By Merlie M. Alunan 1. What is the poet saying? This poem by Alunan is a female version of Yuson’s poem, the Dream of Knives. It gives emphasis to relationship of the narrator to the child wherein the narrator is said to be the mother and the child is said to be the daughter. So in a nutshell, it conveys the story of mother-daughter relationship. And further that it has a representation of this relationship which are the 2 dolls. These dolls represent the past and the present incident of the characters. In the poem, the mother figures out the reason behind the silence of her daughter. It also gave us the understanding and the knowledge that a doll. Doll is a miniature of human figure which is usually associated to young girls. Dolls can be considered as a precious treasure of a child. As time goes by, she was so attached to it that the doll became a very important and special in her life a. What are the key ideas, feelings, impressions, or events presented? The key ideas of this poem is that it is a mother-daughter relationship poem wherein they revolve around this ragged and tattered dolls in which represents the past and present incident of the two characters. The incidents were somehow miserable as I understand the poem. As for the reason that they transfer to another place leaving the dolls behind. The mother forced her daughter not to bring the doll because of its appearance but the daughter really loves the dolls but decided to leave it. On the boat, the mother is crying because she empathized her daughter that she felt that her daughter felt alone. But the mother was puzzled on why her daughter remains silence. Her silence means that her daughter protest to her mother for the reason that she loves that dolls but because her mother forced her not to bring that, she remained silent. Feeling of grief, depression, misery, and regret were presented on the poem. Because in the poem, there is a reason for them to leave the place and transfer to another place. And I see for that reason is that they were an occurrence to the child that makes it miserable. They leave the dolls behind due to it represents the child was being maybe maltreated or abused. And as the story goes, the sorrow of the mother was seen because of what the daughter acts. And the silence of the child makes it also give us the sense of regrets and distress. Because the daughter is longing for the doll because of her love to this toy. The impression presented was good in a sense that it differs in the mood that it focuses on the sorrowfulness of the mother and daughter. The events presented were significant since some people do these things for them to forget something, and this thing is a miserable one. b. What is the main idea or theme of this poem? The main idea for the poem is that one must never lose faith to the ones you love the most. If you want something and you wish to have it, go and fight for it. It shows the loyalty and faithfulness of people where in terms of things they love. And as the poem shows, the daughter really is longing for that doll because the connection of the doll to the child. Because of the childish act of the child that because it is a toy, it is her companion, she wants it to bring but the mother forced her not to bring that and as a protest, and as a worth fighting for, she protest by becoming silent. Furthermore, there will always be consequences to our actions and sometimes you have to risk what you can afford to. We made our choices and decisions on what to value and keep in our hearts. Just like the mother, we don’t have the right to reprimand what’s significant to other people based on our value system.

2. How is the poet saying? a. Who is the speaker in the poem? The speaker of the poem is the author herself as a mother. Then in the point of view, it is on the first person because of the "I" word used in the poem. The speaker also represents as a mother and representation of all the mothers all over the world. b. What form has the poet used? What sound techniques has the poet used? The forms used in the poem are the following: Bio, a poem written about one self's life, personality traits, and ambitions. Like in this poem, you can see the trait of the mother that you can see in oneself and also the daughter as well. Next is free verse, poetry written in either rhyme or unrhymed lines that have no set fixed metrical pattern. Then lyric form, a poem that expresses the thoughts and feelings of the poet. And in the poem, it expresses the feeling of the author to her child. Lastly, narrative because this poem tells a story. The poem does not have any sound technique that she used. c. What appeals to the senses has the poet used? What words help the reader see, hear, feel, taste, and smell the things being described? Images, symbolisms and emotions felt on the poem are appealing to the senses that the poet used. In the poem, the girls silence means a thing. It in fact, utters her protest because of the desire to have the doll but because of her mother’s will, she cannot bring them with her. Also the empathy of the mother symbolizes the connection between her and her daughter. Then the image of the doll. Doll is what the poem focuses on. It is the representation of the “worth fighting for” phrase means. It also represents the femininity, innocence and the companionship it brings to a girl. The words are left behind, dolls, loyalty and love, most especially the word silence. d. What figurative language has the poet used to create word pictures? The figurative speeches used in the poem are the following: climax because of the arrangement of words in order of increasing importance. Then commiseration which is evoking pity in the audience. And lastly, metonymy where substitution of a word to suggest what is really meant. 3. What is your conclusion about the poem’s meaning and effect? Was it an effective poem? What aspects of the poet’s ideas and craft do you appreciate? Would you recommend this poem to a friend? Why or why not? Bringing back memories especially if it was painful that one would wish not to think about it anymore, is always not easy to do. Reminiscing is bitter and sweet. Letting go of someone you love is harder to do especially when you have promised to live together forever. But sometimes life is so cruel that we should have to leave behind a part of ourselves. Fighting someone you loved is not also easy to do especially when your trust is gone. Our needs and values vary on what are the things we want to preserve that make us comfortable and what we would like to keep within our hearts. Just like the mother and child, they have different perspectives and values – mother let go of the dolls while the child wanted to keep them. Each has their own reasons that they believe in, either to keep the sanctity of the family or not. Our past experiences also keep us from going on in our journey and give us the strength to stand up when we stumble down. Yes it is an effective poem most especially to the mothers having this kind of situation with their daughters. The idea of how the author situated the theme into a scenario. Yes it is a good poem that must all parents to read not just the mothers but also the fathers as well. Because you can see the situation and it is really applicable on the scenario of every Filipino. 4. In a three paragraph composition, write a three-paragraph composition about the poem.

Bringing the dolls is the poem made by Merlie Alunan. Doll is a miniature of human figure which is usually associated to young girls. Dolls can be considered as a precious treasure of a child. In the poem, these are the interpretations: the dolls were missing an arm and a leg and blind in one eye, which would possibly refer to a broken family that were frayed apart The persona of a mother suddenly came when she grabbed those dolls from the child. The mother was the speaker of the poem and she was speaking directly to the readers. The mother had taken away the miseries in her life that she was so ready to go and that everything was neatly packed. The mother do not wanted those sad events to mess up with what’s left in her or in anyway stop her from leaving. Maybe what’s left with her was her dignity and self-esteem. She had made up her mind that there’s no other way but to let go and move on. As the only way, the child must also learn that she cannot take what must be left behind as a result it means that the child must also accept things or the truth even though it really hurts. It put into picture that the mother even though affected would not want to let it show to her daughter or even admit to her self that she was crying. It sets the tone of sadness. She was somehow fighting the sorrow deep inside her heart. She could not wipe away her tears because she could not remove the grief she felt inside. At all times, moving on is easier said than done. The past still remains in the mind of the mother and just like the doll; it is also difficult to leave behind. In life, our actions have consequences and sometimes we have to risks a little. The child was silent because she was also affected with what had happened. The child knew her burdens. Thus, the child would be more affected with the break up of their family. But the child has her true rights. That is, she has the right to know the whole truth or maybe to the extent of choosing between her mother and father. The trust and complete acceptance of truth also depends solely on the child, not on her mother. The mother should also respect the choice or the decision of her daughter on what she holds near and dear to her heart. So in the poem, there is a sensitive issue that the reader must understand. And the author definitely made the poem with the mother as the speaker directing to child. In addition, the speaker represents all the mothers in the world. And that child represents all of us. Next the form of the poem is a narrative poem because it tells us the story about the letting go of the things that might bring them miserable life. Next is it in a free verse form and a bio form that shows the traits of the characters similar to us and this poem reflects on us. The story uses representation which is the dolls that makes it appealing to the senses. Then he uses the words most especially silence that stand for the objection of the child because of her love to the doll. He uses metaphor as the most seen figurative speech and further she uses symbolism., climax, commiseration, and metonymy The basic storyline of the poem is told through the persona (the mother) in the form of a monologue. The mother has decided to move her family to another place, and tells her young daughter to leave her two threadbare dolls behind. The mother thinks to herself that this is the correct thing to do, since she wants to teach her daughter some lesson. On the boat the mother tries to hold back her tears when she sees the dolls tucked away among the packs; it is at this point that the mother realizes the reason behind her daughter’s silence: the daughter knew all along what she needed to do, which was to keep her own faiths and stay loyal to the dolls whom she loves. The poet decided on it precisely to heighten the tragedy of her persona’s realization- that she must respect her daughter’s choice too in bringing the dolls.

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