In discussions of “My Papa’s Waltz,” one controversial issue has been that several people believe it’s an abuse issue. On the other hand, some readers argue it is not abuse although, a loving dance between a father and son. While the subject of “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke has spurred passionate academic debate from professors, scholars, and students alike, the imagery, syntax, and diction of the poem clearly support the interpretation that Roethke writes “My Papa’s Waltz” to show a beating of a son by his father that is told in a beautiful dance. Roethke uses imagery, syntax and diction which brings his poem together to reveal a profound meaning. Diction is in “My Papa’s Waltz” to illuminate the idea that his message uses negative connotations to promote the different reader’s perspective about what the main subject of the poem is.
The lines suggest that Papa is drunk that could lead to the situation of violence toward the boy. Another view can be that the boy is small compared to the father. If the boy and the father are waltzing, then the boy could have gotten dizzy by the dance since his father is bigger than him and the description of the father would be that he smelled like whisky. The irony in these lines show the speaker’s descripted memory of his father and how he had become dizzy during their waltz. “My Papa’s Waltz” is written in iambic trimester.
In the poem, “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke, you see a child wanting a father’s love and care. The story opens up by talking about his father being a drunk. Although it does not directly say it, we can tell by the way the boy talks about his father, and his father’s actions. “The whiskey on your breath” (1) is the first line of the poem, which indicates someone talking about alcohol on someone’s breath. As the poem goes on you can start to pick up that it is getting told by a son.
“My Papa’s Waltz” is written from the perspective of someone looking back on a vivid memory from their childhood. The poem demonstrates a problematic father son relationship. The playful tones of “romped until the pans slid” and “waltzed me off to bed” show that the child had love for his father. However, the concerning tones of “the whiskey on your breath”, “scraped a buckle”, and “you beat time on my head” reveal the abusive behavior of an alcoholic father toward his son. While reading this poem, the sensory and kinesthetic imagery immersed me in the experience.
The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience? (250-650) My brother and I peeked through the crack of the door. Slowly, we attempted to leave our bedroom but were paralyzed as we heard our father screaming.
As Roethke mentions the word “beat” it immediately gives the reader a negative notion of the poem. It is clear that the“beat” of “time” his father beats on his “head” refers to the musical beat in a Waltz. In effect, causes his father to tap on his head.
After watching the documentary on Kip Kinkel, I came to the conclusion that they were many factors that contribute to Kip’s mental illness and the tragedy that took place at Thurston High School. The first factor that I think contribute to Kip’s mental illness was the way that Kip’s parents raised him and his sister. According to the video, Kip’s parents always thought that both of their children were going to succeed. Yet, they were always comparing both siblings at different tasks, and in my opinion, I think that is what made Kip feel like he was never good enough in compare to his sister. One perfect example is found in one of the family videos, were we are able to see how Kip’s dad encourages Kristin to do here cartwheels and hand stands.
Every story consists of different elements, such as characters, plotlines, and settings. Nonetheless, many stories portray the same messages or ideas. “My Papa’s Waltz,” by Theodore Roethke, depicts a reckless father who is loved by his child, while “Those Winter Sundays,” by Robert Hayden, depicts a hardworking father whose child is indifferent to him. Though the poems depict exceptionally different childhoods, both contribute to the idea that perceptions of parents alter as one grows into adulthood. Both poems use harsh words and critical tones in order to convey this notion, however in “My Papa’s Waltz,” they signify the recklessness of the father and how the narrator perceives his father as an adult, while in “Those Winter Sundays,” they
Both of the poems are about the unconditional love to their father, but each defines it differently. It shows that no matter what happened love never ends. Love is not just about hugs and snuggles. In “My Papa’s Waltz” the father, who is whisking the boy away to bed, shows that no matter how tough the waltz was, the boy didn’t want to leave his dad. In “Those Winter Sundays” the love is being defined differently.
Meanwhile, the speaker’s tone and word usage in “My Papa’s Waltz” conveys several interpretations such as a father’s love and devotion toward his son while, simultaneously, showing a son’s reflection of love and resentment toward his father in later years. One interpretation of Roethke’s work is in respect to the father: he is a fun-loving, devoted father, since he makes his son’s trip to bed interesting by “waltzing.” The author’s word choice he uses for imagery in the poem’s title acoustically paints a fun picture in the reader’s mind initially by referring to a papa’s waltz. The words papa and waltz have an initial connotation of affection and happy, respectfully, which invokes the reader to believe “Papa” is affectionate and has an energetic or happy walk about him. Subsequently, the speaker says, “We romped until the pans / Slid from the kitchen shelf;” (Roethke) [lines 5-6]. These lines show that the father does in fact have an energetic walk about him.