Gospel By Philip Levine Summary

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Philip Levine’s poem Gospel is about a man’s viewpoint on life while receiving bad information. Throughout the poem the speaker uses similes, metaphors, synechdoches, rhetorical questions, and personification to explain more to the readers. The beginning lines explain and give background information to the readers on how the man viewed the world. As the poem goes on the tone of the poem starts to shift to a sense of depression.
In lines one through five, the speaker of the poem explains to the readers on how life looked to him by stating “The new grass rising in the hills, the cows loitering in the morning chill, a dozen or more old browns hidden in the shadows of the cottonwoods beside the streambed.” By the speaker explaining how he saw nature
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In lines eight through twelve of the poem, the speaker states “I don’t ask myself what I’m looking for. I didn’t come for answers to a place like this, I came to walk on the earth, still cold, still silent.” The speaker says that the earth is cold and silent, illustrating how he or she sees the world as dead and cold. As readers go through the poem they can tell how the speaker was expecting life to turn out the way it did. By the speaker stating in lines thirteen through eight-teen “Still unforgiving, I’ve said to myself, although it greets me with last year’s dead thistles and this year’s hard spines, early blooming wild onions, the curling remains of spider’s cloth” it shows how he views the world as a bad place that never produces anything good. By the speaker saying “still ungiving” it highlights how they were expecting something to come from the world, they felt as if they were supposed to receive something good from society. The speaker also personifies the earth by saying “it greets me.” By stating that in the poem the speaker leaves an ironic feeling on the readers because they were just talking about how the earth is
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