The first thing that can take immediately one’s attention about the poem is its rhythm. The lines contained therein would be appealing for children to read, but they would have difficulty in interpreting its meaning. I, for one, distinguished the meaning of the poem as something like a tiger stalking through the forest in the dead of the night. Yet, I also imagined that the poem talks about a constellation of stars resembling the shape of a tiger in “the distant deeps or skies.
”The first paragraph is clear that the tiger is walking along through the forest, perhaps hunting for its prey. This is supported by the lines “In the forest of the night, what immortal hand or eye could frame thy fearful symmetry. ” The would-be-prey in this poem could be a human being. The man fearing the tiger because of the lines “and when thy heart began to beat, what dread hand? And what dread feet? in what furnace as thy brain? what the anvil?
What dread grasps dare its deadly terror clasp? ” The poem was always in an “inquiring mode. ” Meaning, it asks so many questions; literally, the poem is littered with question marks. The reader would find it sometimes difficult to read the poem with ease and fluidity, because what he unconsciously does is to pause after a line, then tries to answer the question for each line. Nevertheless, the poem did manage to create a sense of beauty surrounding the mystery of the tiger hunting in the night.
After reading the poem, I arrived at the conclusion that the poem will appeal to children because of its rhythm and the subject of the poem, yet it would appeal also to inquiring adults because of the intricacies posed by the questions in the poem. Three questions for other students; 1) What does the word “Lamb” in the poem stand for? 2) “On what wings dare he aspire? ” what does this line mean? 3) Why did William Blake describe “Tyger” as burning bright?
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