Comparing Schizophrenia And Root Cellar Essay

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A house characterized by its moody occupants in "Schizophrenia" by Jim Stevens and the mildewing plants in "Root Cellar" by Theodore Roethke, fighting to stay alive, are both poems that reluctantly leave the reader. The house in "Schizophrenia" raises sympathy for the state the house was left in and an understanding of how schizophrenia works as an illness. In "Root Cellar", the conditions disgust at first, but then uncover a humanly desperate will to live in the plants. Both poems contribute to their vivid meaning by way of well placed sensory details and surprising personification.
In Roethke’s poem “Root Cellar”, the writer consistently uses words ending in “nk”, such as “rank” and “stink” to convey the sense that the cellar not only smells terrible but is vividly prison-like. The dominant senses within the text are
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The utmost display of personification of the house in the poem is “The house came to miss the shouting voices”, insinuating that the house has feelings (9). In Roethke’s “Root Cellar”, the poem gives the plants a primitive human quality for personification, through the use of words like “hunting”. In line 1, the poem begins “Nothing would sleep in that cellar”, and because it’s known that plants do not sleep, this is an example of personifying the plant life (1). The personifying of both the house and the plant life is very different, as the house’s personification is to illuminate upon the house’s physical and mental state to show how much what happens within affects the house as a whole. With the plant life, personification is used to show that no matter how crass or disgusting one is, one is always striving towards life, as death is the least tasteful and one would (normally) always choose life over death. As is shown
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