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.
Diction has a strong affect on how readers interpret a passage. This is proven through Theodore Roethke’s poem, “My Papa’s Waltz”. The poem presents a boy roughhousing with his father. However, some critics see the roughhousing taking place as abusive, due to the negative word choice displayed throughout the poem. The author set a positive and negative tone throughout the poem, representing the respect and fear he had for his father.
Introduction In the short story “The Scarlet Ibis”, by James Hurst, it tells about a boy and his crippled brother. Throughout the story there are many events that depicts how the brothers are different and how the narrator is embarrassed by him. The theme of this story is that pride and ego can be harmful. As soon as Doodle is born the narrator shows a sense of disappointment and hatred towards his brother. One of the first signs of the narrator's feelings is in the third paragraph when he says “It was bad enough having an invalid brother, but having one who possibly was not all there was unbearable, so I began to make plans to kill him by smothering him with a pillow.” This shows that the narrator was disappointed and horrified of having a brother who would not be all there.
Lasting Legacies Since the beginning of time, fathers have been one of the key figures in a boy 's life. In the poems, “Those Winter Sundays” by Theodore Roethke, “My Papa’s Waltz” by Robert Hayden, and "Digging" by Seamus Heaney, the love between a father and his son are shown in a variety of ways. These three wonderful poems inspire people, especially fathers and sons, to have deep relationships with one another. The words written by Roethke, Hayden, and Heaney show that it is difficult to keep a relationship strong between a father and his son, because even the smallest mistake can destroy it. Each of these poems demonstrate, in their own way, the complicated and strong love between a father and his son.
A boy that Holen liked—James Castle—jumped out of a window after a few boys bullied him. These past instances have made Holden the cold, lying, introverted person we know. Holden was very close to Allie so it 's understandable that his death had a resonant effect on him; however, trying to hold onto Allie has caused him to go into a downward spiral. He constantly smokes and drinks to try and fill the hole that his brother left. His drinking mixed with his failure to cope with Allies death had led him to have very intense emotions such as sadness and anger.
Everyone has a father, whether their relationship with him is good or bad. Webster’s Dictionary defines the word father as follows: a man in relation to his natural child or children. “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke and “Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden are two poems with themes set around a father. These poems deal with accounts of the poets’ fathers as they reminisce about certain scenes from their childhood. “My Papa’s Waltz” and “Those Winter Sundays” show similarities and differences in structure, literary elements, and central idea.
Hoagland uses the word “dies” instead of “passes away”, this seems like a cold-hearted word instead of the passing of a loved one. We can infer he had a difficult and confusing relationship with his father. When Hoagland states, “I mistakenly believed that it was love concealed in his closed hand”, it shows how he believed his father loved him even through his abuse. Hoagland’s poem has a melancholic tone in that all the son wanted to do was please his father, who was both abusive and an alcoholic, and how the son tried to believe that even though his father abused him, he still loved him. Hoagland uses a lot of “ah” sounds with the letter in this poem such as in “soft”, “dropped”, and “bottle”.
One way in which imagery is creating the fearful tone is by Dad's drinking. In the Roethke's poem, "My Papa's Waltz", the imagery is used to develop the tone in which the boy is abused. An example of this can be seen when the speaker says,"But I hung on like death" (line 3). This line shows that the boy was scared of his father. This abuse that this boy was enduring was unbearable when the speaker states,"you beat time on my head" (13).
Theodore Roethke’s poem, “My Papa’s Waltz,” unfolds the seemingly frequent event of a young boy receiving a beating from his drunken father. The speaker of the poem is a young man, possibly in his early teenage years. This conclusion is based upon line 2, “Could make a small boy dizzy.” This line gives an indication that the main character of the poem has been involved in this type of tussle since he was a small child. There could also be a very strong connection between the author of the poem and the speaker. It is easy to sense that the author is portraying a very emotional experience he had as a young man.
In the poem My Papa's Waltz, a child is being abused by their father and in the play Fences Cory is abused by his father Troy. Due to this abuse it shows that the plots are similar and that it will lead to similar themes throughout these pieces. In My Papa's Waltz the reader can tell the child is being abused when it states "You beat time on my head With a palm caked
Plath wants to get away from the psychological grip her father had on her without letting go of the parts of him she still loves. Through Roethke’s poem “My Papa’s Waltz,” we can see the portrayal of a negative father when Roethke says “The whiskey on your breath could make a small boy dizzy; but I hung on like death: such waltzing was not easy”
Rashmi Singh Mrs. Gary World Literature 4 14 October, 2016 “It’s a hard knock life” The poem, “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke sounds like it can be lyrics to a song. It seems to be about a child dancing with their father, but it is so much deeper. The poem shows how a child is with their father every step of the way in their difficult life. In the beginning of the poem Roethke describes what a child thinks about their father’s life. “The whiskey on your breath / could make a small boy dizzy; / But I hung on like death:/ Such waltzing was not easy”.