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The speaker in the poem makes use of the first person narration since he is the persona of the poem. All the events that happen in the poem occur from the perspective of the persona who is involved in everything. Reference to the persona is in the first person as she refers to herself as I (Pastan). The poet is successful in the creation of a nostalgic tone through the use of imagery such as the allusion to stitches being torn out which represents the dignity of women being debased as is the case with the ripping of stitches in clothes which leaves a person naked.
The poet has effectively developed the tension in the poem through the application of conflict which is exemplified by the feeling of lack of freedom of women which is exemplified by the death watch beetle and finally in the allusion to escape in the last stanza. The conflict that is portrayed in the poem is more of philosophical due to its deep allusions which are obtained from physical examples nevertheless. It is the conflict between the roles that are ascribed to women by the society. The poet also makes use of language and rhythm in a manner that is inconsistent with the times in which she was writing in order to make a stand against oppression of women by conventions of the time. The author makes a deliberate choice of words which are intended to bring out the nostalgic feelings in the reader through connotative meaning.
The of rhythm in the poem is particularly poignant in that the poet has completely ignored the conventions of classical poetry by letting his mind freely pour out his reflections and refusing to be bound by conventions. The poet makes use of metaphors to make an emphasis and explanation of his philosophical ideas which are expounded in the physical context. The use of metaphors is particularly useful ass it makes the message even more poignant (Pastan). The use of the deathwatch beetle struggling with a window is intended to show that women can see the light but they have no means of achieving freedom since they are restricted by society. There is absolutely no rhyme scheme which may be discerned from the poem as all the words have different endings. Features such as alliteration and consonance have also not been taken into consideration by the poet. The major consistency in this poem is the lack of adherence to these conventional rules of classical poetry which is allusion to the freedom craved by women in the society.
The poet makes use of his freedom to smoothly make transition between the different ideas she is presenting and also to make linkages between the ideas. The words of the poet are spread apart in such a manner as to make some of the lines difficult to comprehend since the poet separates words from other which serve to give meaning to those words. This separation of words is however used by the author for a purpose of forging differential interpretations of the lines that are broken into ungrammatical structures. There is the use of the active voice which is combined with past tense. This use of past tense is inconsistent with the active voice and therefore the poem gradually shifts from the past tense to the present tense as it progresses until it finally uses only the present tense in the last stanza (Pastan). The punctuation employed by the poet is intended to create double meanings in specific sentences as punctuation is used in some and used sparingly in others. The poet makes use of dashes and commas in places in which she intends to have special effect of emphasis or double meaning.