The Meal, My papa’s Malts, and Daddy Essay Example
The Meal, My papa’s Malts, and Daddy Essay Example

The Meal, My papa’s Malts, and Daddy Essay Example

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The three poems used in this essay are: "The Meal", "My papa’s Malts", and "Daddy". All three poems were written and created in such a descriptive manner with the use of images that stimulates the imagination and the senses of the readers. Thus, imagery plays a role in each of the three aforementioned poems to depict and describe the parent-child relationships in the poetries. Body The Meal

The Meal

The first poem to be analyzed is “The Meal” by Suzanne E. Berger.

The role of imagery for this poem is created in a creative manner to impart the parent-to-child and child-to-parent relationship in this selection which conveys a stiff and formal relationship of the family with the indifferent parents but with obedient children. The atmosphe


re of the poem is formal, serious, and serene eating meal with the family at the table where there is no conversation present, citing lines 14 and 24 to make the connotations evident: It is so quiet, all waiting stars and dunes, Their bread still gleaming in the silence. ” Visual imageries were used by the author to connote the rigid behavior of the family members: the mom, father, and the offsprings: They gather around the table carefully As constellations waiting to be named, Their minds shift and ready, like dunes It is so quiet, all waiting stars and dunes.

The static sense of motion of the characters in the story is depicted by the author through the following stanza: Their forks move across their plates without scraping, They wait for the milk and gravy At the table with its forgotten spices They are waiting for

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happiness to lift their eyes, Like sudden light flaring in the trees outside. The overall implication of the poem is the family eating meal in a stiff and unsatisfying way.

My Papa’s Maltz

This poem by Theodore Roethke projects the fondness and closeness of the child to ones father. Inspite of the “whiskey” smell on the father’s breath, child still clings to one’s father. It uses the image of the sense of smell or olfactory. The ff. lines prove the imagery: “The whiskey on your breath Could make a small boy dizzy. ” While the image of touch (tactile) was depicted through these lines: “But I hung on like death, Such waltzing was not easy,” Sense of kinetic motion in the nest two lines: “We romped until the pans, Slid from the kitchen shelf. Sense of visual image was shown by the next two lines: “My mother's countenance, Could not unfrown itself. ” Lastly, the sense of touch or tactile was portrayed to describe the affection of the parent to the child and vice versa: You beat time on my head With a palm caked hard by dirt, Then waltzed me off to bed Still clinging to your shirt.


This poem by Sylvia Plath denotes the cultivated dread and hatred of a child to one’s father even in adult age. The author used metaphor to make the description of the child to one’s father sound less foul. Hyperbole was used to exaggerate the description of the chid to such implied indifferent father: Daddy, I have had to kill you. You died before I had time Marble-heavy, a bag full of God, Ghastly statue with

one gray toe Big as a Frisco seal The fear of the child to one’s father even until considered grown-up: I have always been scared of you, With your Luftwaffe, your gobbledygoo.

And your neat mustache And your Aryan eye, bright blue. Panzer-man, panzer-man, O You. Lastly, the author also used metaphor to compare the father to a vampire as the child character perceived one’s father: If I've killed one man, I've killed two The vampire who said he was you And drank my blood for a year, Seven years, if you want to know. Daddy, you can lie back now. and There's a stake in your fat black heart And the villagers never liked you. They are dancing and stamping on you. They always knew it was you. Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I'm through.

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