Question: How does the poet use language to communicate her son’s response to reading and how does she convey her own feelings to you? Answer: In the poem, the poet shows us about her little genius son who can do everything except for reading. Throughout the description about her son’s behavior in reading, she conveys to us her frustrated feelings when her son doesn’t have any interest in reading.
Firstly, the contrast in 2 aspects which exist inside her son is clearly shown by the first stanza. In 4 first lines of the first stanza, the poet asserts that her smart son can do many things that many other kids can’t do: “make sculptures”, “fabulous machines”, “solemn advice”… The images of a smart and sensible boy is painted beautifully under poet’s pen; only mother who are supremely proud of her son can makes this masterpiece. Here, the use of exaggeration is used to describe the wonderful abilities of poet’s son, which is a leverage to pull the frustration in poet’s feelings up when she said:” but he is slow to read”. The word “but” suggests the changing in tone of the poem from excitement, pride to disappointment.
Although her love spend on him is very immense, the difference between adults and children’s thinking prevents her from being optimistic consistently about her son: When I take him on my knee with his Ladybird book he gazes into the air, sighing and shaking his head like an old man who knows the mountains are impassable. The poet tries to reach her son but his action makes her down; it is a such a drag on her thinking. Listing three verbs which suggests the negative effect, she conveys to us how languid her son is in reading book. Using the simile, poet portrays image of her son like an old, thoughtful man knowing that the mountains are impassable. Facing with book her son is deactivated.
Through the first stanza, mother’s feeling goes down from the top to the bottom of a mountain when she told us about her son. The contrast between what her son can do and reading puts her in tumult. Secondly, as evidence, the second stanza is an infallible description about her son’s response to words. He toys with words, letting them go cold as gristly meat At first, he son has a little try on making words become familiar with what he is fancy in but all he can do bring him to a boring world of words.
Normally, people can’t so something that it is not strong enough to attract them and in them same case, her son tries in hopeless; he can’t do reading under his mother’s pressure. One more time, the simile is used. It conveys how hard with the poet’s get close to reading like swallowing a tough, chewy meat. His response to reading is completely like the feelings of bird imprisoned in the cage: vain, empty and tedious.
Finally, “the fish are released”; the son is liberated from reading. His feeling is full of beatitude. a fish returning to its element,or a white-eyed colt – shying from the bit – who sees that if he takes it in his mouth he’ll never run quite free again. He enjoys his freedom like the fish returns to its element. The poet exhaled using this idiom to describe her anxiety when her son became active again after hardcore reading.
Here, the mother (poet) seems to find out the inscrutable behavior of her son that makes him fed up with reading. The image of a young male horse suggests the using of metaphor. The poet’s son is forced to read and the freedom is out like the young male horse when he is bound by the bit “he’ll never run quite free again.”
At this point, the poet emphasizes that her son seem to be regenerated after the reading section, which pull her down when she tries her best to help her son. The poem is written the heart of a mother who spends all her love to him, tries to help him ceaselessly while her son can’t show his positive behavior to reading. It reflects the a difference between the adult perspective and children point of view.