Describe an important idea in two short texts and explain why each idea is important to teenagers. ("Work and Play" and "The Warm and the Cold" by Ted Hughes)

Essay by Smailman November 2007

download word file, 2 pages 0.0

Downloaded 1772 times

In the short texts “Work and Play” and “The Warm and the Cold” by Ted Hughes an important idea is that nature enjoys life more than humans, even when at work or left out in the cold. Ted Hughes conveys this idea through his use o metaphor, simile and assonance. This idea is important to teenagers because they need to learn to enjoy life more or else they will be consumed with stress.

One way this idea is conveyed is through Ted Hughes’ use of metaphor. In the poem “Work and Play” he compares a swallow to a spark of electricity. “A blue-dark knot of glittering voltage.” This metaphor makes the swallow seem bright and energetic, ready to do anything, a clearly positive image. In the same poem Hughes compares a line of traffic to a snake. “The serpent of cars that crawls through the dust.” Even though the people inside these cars are about to go on holiday, their cars are reluctant and lethargic, showing how unwilling they are to enjoy their time at the beach.

These quotes show the need for humans to enjoy life before they become lethargic like the “serpent of cars.” This is especially true for teenagers who are going through an especially stressful time.

Another way the idea has been conveyed by Ted Hughes is through the use of simile. In “The Warm and the Cold,” Ted Hughes compares a carp in its pond to the planet out in space. “The carp is in its depth like a planet in its heaven.” This paints a clear image of a contented carp hanging in the water with nothing to disturb its serenity. Later on in the poem Hughes compares farmers to a roasting beast. “The sweating farmers turn in their sleep like oxen on spits.” This shows how restless and concerned the farmer is with human worries, so much so that he is getting a bad nights sleep. Teenagers need to be careful that they rid themselves of human concerns and enjoy life so that they are not plagued with bad dreams like the farmer was.

Finally, Ted Hughes conveys his idea through the use of assonance. In “Work and Play” Hughes uses assonance to create a negative image of humans getting out of their cars. “Disgorges its organs.” The repetition of the vowel ‘o’ gives the reader the impression that that the cars are vomiting out the humans rather than them coming out eagerly to enjoy their holiday. It makes it seem as if the cars didn’t like or want the humans, as if they were poison. This shows how humans and especially teenagers need to learn to enjoy life more.

In conclusion, an important idea in the poems “Work and Play” and “The Warm and the Cold” by Ted Hughes is that nature enjoys life more than humans, even when at work or in the cold. This is important to teenagers because they are going through a particularly stressful time in their lives (with exams and peer pressure) and need to learn to enjoy life to its fullest.

All quotes taken from "Work and Play" and "The Warm and the Cold" by Ted Hughes.