CAP 2 - Critical Analysis Paper 2: Poetry Performance Our...

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Critical Analysis Paper 2: Poetry Performance Our textbook says that it is extremely important that the poems you choose to perform are poems that you like and enjoy. The two poems that I have selected for my poetry performance are both very important and dear to me. The first poem selection I choose is “O Captain! My Captain!” by Walt Whitman. I first stumbled upon this poem when I was actually in the third grade and needed to memorize a poem, much like this performance for Coms 208. Back then I did not realize the significance of this poem nor how famous it was. However, the biggest difference between my performance back then and now is that this time I hope I do not have what I learned from our textbook as a set- speech attitude. For my performance back then I basically just rushed through the poem without knowing exactly what I was reciting. This time, I will be able to analyze and understand exactly what I will be performing. For my second selection I choose a poem by one of my all time favorite poets Shel Silverstein called “A Boy Named Sue”. I knew that I wanted to do something by this particular poet because his poems are so funny and I knew that most of the poems that would be recited for the project would be very serious. I knew that Shel Silverstein’s poem would definitely lighten the mood and be something different that maybe some people have not experienced. I specifically chose “A Boy Named Sue” because it tied in very nicely with “O Captain! My Captain” because both poems are about boys who end up loosing their fathers. The poem by Walt Whitman is a narrative poem and of course very famous for many good reasons. This poem is set up with three separate stanzas and a rhyme scheme
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of A, A, B, B, C, D, E, D. This means that out of the eight lines in each stanza, only two lines do not rhyme. The beginning of two out of three of the stanzas starts off with “O Captain! my Captain!”, which is very significant because we can see throughout the poem that it does not matter if “Captain” is at the beginning of the line or in the middle, it is always capitalized. This specific choice of Whitman to do this was purposeful to show the importance of the Captain in this poem. The narrator of this poem switches back and forth between calling the man who is dead “Captain” and “father”, although he is not necessarily a literal father. It is very meaningful that “Captain” is always capitalized and
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This note was uploaded on 01/10/2011 for the course COMS 208 taught by Professor Blau during the Spring '09 term at Cal Poly.

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CAP 2 - Critical Analysis Paper 2: Poetry Performance Our...

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