Identify the language and literary techniques used by the poet (Thomas Hardy in "The Voice") and discuss why these techniques have been used.

Essay by xerxes01High School, 12th gradeA, July 2005

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Thomas Hardy in his poem 'The Voice' deals with the theme of the consequences of grief and loss. He addresses this theme by means of examining his own feelings at his wife's death, his wish to relive the past, his wish to be reunited with her and his feelings of despair and hopelessness at what life has become for him without her. To convey his theme to the reader, Hardy uses a range of language and literary devices such as juxtaposition, varied line length, sound devices, imagery, connotation, word choice, rhetorical question and repetition.

In the first stanza Thomas Hardy illustrates his great grief at the loss of his wife. He misses her a great deal and senses that she is calling out to him. He longs for her and longs to be with her. The depth of his grief is clear from the use of the word 'much' in "woman much missed" and the repetition of "you call to me".

A consequence of his grief and loss is that he believes she calls to him and that she has changed back to the girl he first met and married and when they were happy, "when our day was fair." Grief clearly has a great impact on individuals.

In the second stanza he questions whether he is literally hearing from her. He answers his own question with the request to see her once again standing by the town in the 'air blue gown' that he clearly remembers so well. In his grief Thomas Hardy wishes to ignore time and see his wife as she was when they first met. Grief causes individuals to hope for miracles, so that loneliness and despair can be overcome.

In the third stanza Thomas Hardy accepts reluctantly that he is not hearing his...