"Traveling Through the Dark" William Stafford

Topics: Syllable, Poetry, Vowel Pages: 3 (1381 words) Published: December 22, 2009
Jennifer Sanchez Professor Sargent
Poetry 165W December 18, 2009
{draw:frame} “Traveling Through the Dark”: William Stafford In the poem, “Traveling Through the Dark”, William Stafford uses alliteration, imagery and natural speech in order to convey the disheartening emotions that come with being forced to make a life threatening decision. He orders the images in his tale to allow our minds and emotions with his as he works his way through making a choice; man or nature. The poem lacks a regular meter making appear conversational as he tells us his story, but he also sets up scenes and describes the imagery so well to make it more dramatic. Each stanza is set up to describe a different part of the story that is then summed up and continued in the next, making “cliff-hangers” that causes tension and excitement for the reader as they continue. Although the poem does not contain a rhyme scheme, Stafford tends to make the words of every other line share a consonant or vowel sound. The poem was also written in past tense to show that this is a memory being descried to us which allows us to feel as though we are sitting nearby and listening. Stafford describes the setting for us in this first stanza; he was driving at night when he ran into a deer lying in the road. He starts off with the positive image of encountering a deer while driving along a country side, something most people find to be a desirable experience. But almost immediately after that he informs us that he “found [the] dear dead on the edge of the Wilson River road”, connecting the two lines with alliteration forcing us to slow to carefully pronounce the two words as we begin to realize what is really happening here. Stafford uses the fact that it is night to bring a more lonely and eerie feel as well as imagery for that dark and sad situation that he is going through. He then tells us that he should remove the dear from the road because if another driver were to “swerve” around it on this...
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