Monday, February 22, 2010

Hope in the end of "The Salior"?

Southey's poem on slavery was very emotional and powerful. The descriptions of this man's mental sufferings were very life-like and stirring. It begins with a strong image of hopelessness and sadness but I feel like the ending has hope for the guilt he has after beating the woman. The spirit of the lady haunts him constantly (lines 105-108) and he is crying for some relief. Even though I feel like the minister offers hope, it is unclear if the sailor ever listened to him and prayed to be removed of these fears and guilt. The majority of the poem focuses on the events that happened on the ship but only a few stanzas actually show the interaction of the chaplain and sailor. It is heartbreaking to hear the descriptions of his acts but I wish there was a clearer ending that showed that the grace of God was working in this man's life and giving restoration.

The structure of this poem makes it easy to read and understand. The language is not as elevated as other poetry we've studied. The rhythm is very consistent and I think it helps so that the reader can focus on the text and not be sidetracked with the other structural issues.

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