What if a Much of a Which of a When

 really enjoyed reading this poem because of the rhythm and lyricism of this work, the alliteration and consonance make the phrases fun to pronounce. My main goal when presenting this poem was to make the stressed syllables as obvious as possible especially in the first line of each stanza because of the unique sets of three dactyls. Another important part of the rhythm of the poem is the parallel structure of each stanza it creates a repetitive pattern like you would have in a song. I tried to use a similar speech and pronunciation pattern, I would use a questioning tone for the third and fourth lines, but I think that I could of used more inflection in my voice. Then distinguishing the comparisons in the fifth and sixth lines. I also tried to accentuate the pause between the sixth and seventh line to show a change in tone of the narrative to something more optimistic. In the second stanza third line I also pluralized the word thing to things, which changes the final sound of the phrase but it just accidentally happened which is also interesting because it highlights the unconventional syntax that Cummings uses in the poem. I also tried to read in a more serious tone than I would usually because the subject matter of the poem is surprisingly violent. The imagery evoked through Cummings word choice described a impartial desolation with some end of the world undertones. However the last lines of every stanza end of a note of hope, and that combined with the flowing lyricism of the poem made it very interesting to read aloud and interact with. I really liked this assignment because it made me approach the analysis of this e e cummings poem differently


One thought on “What if a Much of a Which of a When

  1. Hi, Jessica. The attention you paid to the metrical structure of the poem definitely came through in your delivery. Your discussion brought up a lot of important ideas, technical as well as historical. In general, I wish you had picked a smaller number of elements to focus on (the war/violence theme, the influence of French experimental writing, etc.) and elaborated in greater detail about how they play out in the text of the poem. Even though this is an informal medium, watch out for run-on sentences in the written portion.

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