The Fly Poem Analysis

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In Karl Shapiro’s “The Fly,” the typical life of a fly is shown, and the speaker exhibits his disgust for the creature being described. In this six-stanza poem, the author utilizes several literary devices to give the reader a visual of the fly’s life, while also utilizing diction that elicits an abhorrent tone from the speaker. This harsh perspective of the fly’s life is used as justification for the speaker’s act of killing these flies, which are only doing what their creator intended, in multiple ways. Through the theme of man’s savagery, symbolism, and frequent utilization of similes, the author brings a poetic thought to the unusual subject of a fly’s life and his impact on humans. Throughout this piece of literary work, the theme of the savagery of humans is displayed with a tone of power and contempt. “But I, a man, must swat you with my hate,/ Slap you across the air and crush your flight,” is a primary example of this concept. The speaker’s claim that he “must swat you with my hate” justifies the futility of murdering this defenseless creature, which was only doing what it knew to do. Also, the speaker attempts to justify the brutality of man by comparing something irrelevant- the size of man and the fly. The statement at the end of stanza three, “To draw you from the hunter’s reach that…show more content…
Through the diction and the harsh tone of the speaker, Shapiro attempts to give justification for killing these innocent organisms he deems pests. At the same time, the speaker’s castigation of this insect forces the reader to think about the preposterous feeling of superiority and power that humans have over organisms smaller in both size and intellect. Shapiro has undoubtedly given the subject of an inconvenient fly’s impact on humans a poetic thought by means of including the theme of man’s savagery, symbolism, and frequent utilization of
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