The Importance of Human Life


For this week, I will write about the poems “Harlem” by Langston Hughes and “A Poison Tree” by William Blake. “Harlem” is about the hopelessness of the people living inside Harlem, where dreams are “deferred.” “A Poison Tree” is about growing anger and the damaging effects of such actions can be where “wrath did grow.”
They have in common that they are both written with a specific theme throughout the poem. Though both poems are short, both authors use rhymes and imagery to express their theme. Hughes describe the dreams as “raisins” and Blake describes his anger to an apple tree growing in a garden. Also, they both address the readers in a first-person point of view and the readers feel that the author is speaking to them directly.
However, the two poems differ in their way of expressing their image. Hughes uses more figure of speech type of imagery where the dreams in Harlem are “dry up” or “stink like rotten meat” and “explode.” In contrast, Blake uses a figurative imagery to bring up an image of a garden with an apple tree that is poisoned with his anger. Though both authors are trying to paint a picture of their theme, Hughes is more filled with words of action and how the dream disappear while Blake describes his theme of anger in a more visual way of the garden and the tree itself.
I find that both poems express some part of my life as well. Though I have no experience in Harlem or the difficulty of living as an African American, I think that financial and other reasons can also be barriers to achievements. And when anger or any kind of negative feelings are not expressed correctly, I also contemplate on that and let my emotions grow.

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