Order for Masks Essay

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replymarksaguimo wrote on Sep 13, ’08 Order for Masks by Virginia Moreno; an Analysis The poem, Order for Masks, is vividly discussing about a woman who are referring herself as a harlequinade; a pantomime, supported by the phrase “black tights and fool’s cap” worn by a clown. This was a preface to the whole idea of the poem, being as performer or better word “a pretender” to the “three men in her life”. The gender of the speaker was supported by the mythological name “Philomela” on the third stanza.

On most part of the poem, several allusions were used like the “Billiken”, is a charm doll that was patented on a dream; elf-like with pointed ears, a mischievous smile, and a tuft a hair on his pointed hair, maybe referring talking to her dream or to herself to have a three masks. A mask that she would be wearing when she is with her twin brother is a mask that is totally opposite to his. The second stanza is rendering a scene that the speaker let her twin brother to be separated to each other to not let him know whatever she’s hiding by performing opposite of her twin.

The second one she wants’ to make is a mask to her father. The third stanza showcases that the mask should make her father believe that she was still an innocent daughter that is usually known. Because of the allusion “Philomela before she was raped”, refers to a mythological figure Philomela, an Athenian princess, who was escorted and raped by Tereus on the voyage to Thrace. “Before she was raped” were rendering the speaker’s chastity and innocence. Another allusion “Lear” is refers to “King Lear” on Shakespeare’s tragedy novel King Lear who underestimated his three daughters that led to his fall. Blind Lear” supporting the idea that the speaker is hiding something that would not let her father traces or notice it by pretending that she is still the daughter she knows. And the last mask she would wear if she is with her “Seducer”. Here on the last stanza, it shows the one she’s hiding. Words are used figuratively, “will in colors race”, “carnival stars”, “change in shape” and it was supported by “under his grasping hands” describing her relationship to her lover, that the speaker was battered and bruised by his lover hands.

The first three lines of the fourth stanza telling that everything his lover wants must be done. And the fourth line tells that the battering is typical from their relationship. But on the fifth, telling that she is staying strong as a stone from her lover’s actions towards her. And it was supported by the last three lines of this stanza that her lover is pretending, not knowing his feat to the speaker of the poem. Conclusion

The poem by Virginia Moreno “Order for Masks” is a very feminist, symbolizing towards battered woman of our society. Even though the woman of the poem is under abused, she still manages to stay strong beyond her family members, as if nothing happens. It shows the as one of the quality of a Filipino woman; a martyr. The poem used many allusions to improve the poem. The tone of the speaker on the poem is longing and melancholy as behind the suffering, she’s showing that she is fine towards others.

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