Literary Devices In Hughes's Poems, By Langston Hughes

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Throughout the poem, the author uses a variety of literary devices such as imagery, alliteration, and personification to express the complexity of nature. Hughes also forwards his quandary of painting the scene to us by explaining his predicament through aforementioned literary devices.

First and foremost, Hughes captures the rambunctious nature of the ecosystem he is trying to paint by using alliteration. In the opening line, he describes water lilies as a “green level of lily leaves”, capitalizing on the l in each word. He does this again multiple times, such as the “flies’ furious arena” or “bullets by”. Through using alliteration, he creates a rhythm with in the poem that unmistakably suggests a rhythmic nature to the ecosystem. Reading between the lines, Hughes uses alliteration also to pose the quandary of painting the ecosystem in a still, and his difficulty accentuating the rhythmic pattern.

Further down, Hughes uses visual imagery and auditory imagery to further the rambunctiousness that he attempts to paint. Visual imagery is more pronounced than auditory imagery within the poem as there are abundant examples of visual imagery. The first instance occurs within the first stanza as he describes the water lilies as “roofs the pond’s chamber”. By engaging the word roof, Hughes helps us visualize the water lilies in perspective under water, and immediately we think of these lilies as tiles on a ceiling or decorative patterns. Beyond what Hughes wrote literally, on a

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