The explosive imagery in “the country bursts open on the sea” implies that the persona is overwhelmed with the sudden change of landscape. They feel a sense of awe and wonder in the vastness of nature, and with the image of the “unfurled beach”, and Gray’s own use of a tone of wonder, responders are welcomed to envision this overwhelming beauty and begin to value the joy of nature. The possibilities of beauties in nature are there for both the persona and the audience. Meatworks
Overview This poem is about a persona who works in a meat works. The meat works is an abattoir which is a factory responsible for slaughtering animals and turning them into meat products. Clearly, the persona does not enjoy his work. In fact, it is gruesome as it is unsavoury. The description of the job is disgusting. It is presented as unnatural and the speaker feels disgust for what he does. It is a repulsive job. The positive part of the poem occurs when he leaves the job and walks home. Here, he talks about walking on a beach and nature is presented positively and powerfully. There is a sense of nature healing and restoring the persona from a sense of calm. The persona attempts to cleanse himself from the hideousness of the meat works industry. The end of the poem reveals his feeling that his job is actually a crime or an inhumanity Discovery Discoveries can change perceptions of individuals and groups as well as result in the ramifications of changed values, seen with the tone of distaste for modern society’s focus on money and industry. The poem helps the audience think about this issue of greed. It is suggested that money and the economy motivate unnatural actions which cannot be excused. The power of the economic need for the individuals to work is clear in the poem. These actions seem to have an effect on the persona’s spiritual values. They seem to be polluting them. The individual has discovered that he is not totally blameless nor without responsibility. It is important that the persona makes it clear that looking back he may not have wanted to see the flaw in the analogy then but he can see it now. In retrospect, the idea that there is no excuse for collaborating in such an activity is suggested. This hints that all individuals are responsible for their actions and have to make their own mora choices. Discovery of the natural world as something worth and sustaining. In a Romantic sense, it is presented as restorative and powerful. Nature is shown to cleanse, and in a sense, this abattoir is running against the rules of nature. Animals tend to hunt to ill survival needs whereas this abattoir is about systemised murder, beyond an immediate need, for the purpose of profit. Hence factory substitution for the hunt means modern man is basically breaking the rules of the hunter and the prey. The focus on the movement of the world to industrialisation is shown by the fact that the person feels the need to work. In order to be successful, or be able to function in the modern world, on needs to have money. The poem shows this may well come at a cost. That cost is obviously the compromising of personal and moral values. People are forced to do things that they really do not want to do, just to survive. Like many of his other poems, this poem has Gray
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