General Question

ems5a33's avatar

Can someone please tell me what you understand about this poem and what symbol best fits for it?

Asked by ems5a33 (9points) August 20th, 2008

Here it is:

Change
by:Angela Manalang Gloria

I have outgrown them all, and one by one,
These loves I took so mightily to heart
Before you came; the dolls that overran
My childhood hours and taught me fairy art;
The books I ravished by the censored score;
Music that like delirium burned my days;
The golden calf I fashioned to adore
When lately I forsook the golden phrase.

And thus I shall outgrow this love for you.
Sooner or later I shall put away
This jewelled ecstasy for something new.
Brand me not fickle on that fatal day
Bereft of change that is my drink and bread,
I would not love you now. I would be dead.

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26 Answers

loser's avatar

Symbol?

gailcalled's avatar

All I will tell you is that it is written in sonnet form. For the rest ( meter, language, metaphor, etc. you are on your own.) It is a complicated poem and the analysis is not for the faint-hearted. (What grade are you in?) Shakespeake wrote similar ones.

Lovelocke's avatar

It sounds like you are still in high school to me. The best poems, in my mind, use abstract words to paint portraits of ideas, not just obvious words to convey speech.

All I can say is “cheer up emo kid” and “it would be better to talk to someone than it would be to keep it to yourself”, which is what this poem is doin

Lovelocke's avatar

iPod glitch. Also, as far as symbols, I’d go for a two-headed coin. You’re turning over a new side, but you’re still the same as you were before.

wrestlemaniac's avatar

it seems to me that you love something but, sooner or later you will begin to forget about it and find something else that you love, hey i tried.

nina's avatar

This too shall pass… (King Solomon?)

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Oh, I know what it means!
Here goes:
“Each person should will gain a lot more from doing his or her own homework than from soliciting the work of strangers.”

gailcalled's avatar

The poem deserves at least a two-page essay. The poet chose each word, every punctuation mark and the sonnet form for reasons that were not arbitrary. That includes the title.

gailcalled's avatar

I looked up her biography. A very interesting woman and one whom I am happy to learn about. Apparently she was a Filipino and her works (one book of poetry) was translated into English.

wundayatta's avatar

It treats each phase, or the metaphors of each phase of life as loves. As the phase of life comes, the protagonist falls in love with that phase and it’s activities and accoutrements. Then as she grows older, it’s as if she falls out of love, and moves to the next lover. It suggests that she actually loves life (lucky her).

Then she turns her attention towards the end of life, and treats death as the final love, intertwining the notions of life and death. Life, I think, is the “jewelled ecstasy.”

Death, of course, is unchanging, and change is what life is, for without it, we are dead. Change is her “drink and bread.” And if you’re dead, it’s hard to love, so you can’t love the final change after it has occurred.

I find that this poem also echoes another kind of change that women undergo: menopause (the Change). “Jewelled ecstasy,” I thought, might refer to love making, and the suggestion that she might put away those kinds of experiences after she changes.

There’s more, but that’s all I want to say now. Interpreting poems is an interesting challenge. I don’t care if this is for homework. Although, if it is, I know you’ll do the right thing and attribute work that is not your own to the appropriate author.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

oh, yeah, daloon, ems5a33 is going to write:

“the poem, ‘treats each phase, or the metaphors of each phase of life as loves. As the phase of life comes, the protagonist falls in love with that phase and it’s activities and accoutrements. Then as she grows older, it’s as if she falls out of love, and moves to the next lover. It suggests that she actually loves life (lucky her).

Then she turns her attention towards the end of life, and treats death as the final love, intertwining the notions of life and death. Life, I think, is the “jewelled ecstasy.”

Death, of course, is unchanging, and change is what life is, for without it, we are dead. Change is her “drink and bread.” And if you’re dead, it’s hard to love, so you can’t love the final change after it has occurred.

I find that this poem also echoes another kind of change that women undergo: menopause (the Change). “Jewelled ecstasy,” I thought, might refer to love making, and the suggestion that she might put away those kinds of experiences after she changes.’

but that’s not my work. i attribute it to someone calling himself or herself “daloon” who wrote that on an internet website called www.fluther.com on august 20th, 2008 after i wrote a post asking what this poem meant. the end.”

yeah right

wundayatta's avatar

@chica: you know, if we’re lucky, humanity will have a long future. We’ll slowly improve ourselves. I’m a teacher. I give a lot of advice. People don’t often follow my advice at first. Generally, they need to make some mistakes, and then the come back and tell me, “you know, you were right. I should have done it your way.”

Do I expect ems to attribute the quote? Hell, no! I doubt if that person even knows what attribution is. But now they should at least have some idea of the concept, and why real people care to have their work attributed to them, instead of being stolen by someone else.

And you know what? I had a good time putting my spin on the poem. So I really don’t care if I get credited with the work, or not. I don’t care if I know if it’s used or not. I just think and write because I want to, and I give it away free to anyone who wants it, and am pleased if anyone actually reads it. I hardly expect it to be used, anyway, since it’s a useless piece of drivel, and probably has nothing to do with the correct way of interpreting the poem.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

daloon,
i think it’s great that you’re a teacher, and that you’re so open and generous.

i just have a different point of view. i’m on the honor council at my university, and i see people throwing their careers away all the time because they are too lazy and irresponsible to do their own work, or don’t turn in anything and get a bad grade. sometimes you get caught, sometimes you don’t, but in the end, its only yourself you have to live with, and i wouldn’t help anyone commit plagiarism because it would be on their conscience, and on mine.
i’m not going to help someone shoot heroin, and i’m not going to help them get kicked out of school either, just because they have to make their own mistakes. people can make mistakes all day long, i’m just not going to be there handing them the needle.

wundayatta's avatar

I was going to say that’s a bad analogy, but I realized it isn’t. You see, I would be there to hand them that needle. You want to know why? Needle exchange programs are a proven way to reduce the spread of AIDS.

I believe in information, not enforcement. As you say, in the end, it will be on the plagiarist’s conscience. I believe that if people are going to behave well, it has to be because of intrinsic motivation, not extrinsic. I think I am doing this person more of a favor by giving them the opportunity to do the right thing, and by letting them know what the right thing is, and how it is important; than I would be doing if I refused to answer.

And don’t forget. I don’t really care why they asked. What attracted me was my own personal interest in answering. I don’t think I should deprive myself of that important (to me) pleasure in the interests of being a homework cop. I’m sorry. That’s not my purpose in life.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

woohoo, let’s let people die of heroin overdoses instead of aids. wow, you’re really saving the world. someone should give you a freakin medal.

and what i said was it would be on their conscience, and on mine, and I don’t want that on my conscience, but obviously we have different points of view. you don’t seem to see plagiarism as wrong. i’m sure a lot of my classmates would jump at the chance to have you as a teacher.

wundayatta's avatar

I never said plagiarism was not wrong. Where we disagree is on how to correct it. You come from a rules and enforcement-based approach, which is typical of how most people in the US think. It is an approach that, unfortunately for us, is not shown to work, when it is analyzed, and compared to other approaches. Teaching approaches designed to enhance intrinsic motivators to behave well work much better for the vast majority of people.

And yes, I bet your classmates would jump at the chance to learn from me, not because I allow copying without attribution, but because my classes are more interesting and I would never give an assignment on which one could plagiarize. I teach people to think, not parrot.

On second thought, maybe they wouldn’t like it. Thinking is hard work. It’s also practically impossible to fake, at least for anyone who is paying attention.

mee_ouch's avatar

Daloon & La Chica…..you both have incredibly valid opinions and stalwart convictions. I don’t believe that daloon is condoning plagarism as a means to achieve a desired result. The confusion wrests with the fact that fundamentally, this is a social networking site where one can and may seek answers and opinions on any subject they deem worthy. Regardless of their age and academic status. Perhaps the question may have raised a ‘homework red flag’ as it were. That being the case, I find daloon’s unabashed opinion all the more refreshing given his acknowledgement as an academic.

By and large, if ems is indeed soliciting help, then he/she is at least coming to trusted ‘friends’ and not the Coles Notes version.
BTW….when did asking for help/suggestions become analogous to plagarism? And if that’s the case, how on earth is one supposed to learn anything?

gailcalled's avatar

In the case of analysis of poetry, you learn in a poetry class with a good teacher and some other poetic examples. Then you take a deep breath and try one on your own.

This poem, line by line and stanza by stanza, is pretty straightforward. It uses unvaried iambic pentameter, is in the sonnet form, has end rhymes; and the metaphors and similes and other figures of speech are not too complicated.

gailcalled's avatar

Daloon gets an A.

wundayatta's avatar

I don’t want an A. I want a discussion. Did you think my menopause idea was in there, or something I’m off base about?

gailcalled's avatar

@Dal: It’s ems discussion. Ask your own question about poetry analysis and we will chime in.

Menopause seems an unlkely theme in this sonnet. The color referred to is “golden” and not red, ruby, ruddy, rusty, sanguine, etc. Sex after menopause is terrific for most women for a long time, particularly since the fear of pregnancy is over. Her use of “fickle,“fatal day,” “brand, ” “golden calf” strike another note entirely.

gailcalled's avatar

Anyway, I am stopping before I write MY term paper.

SeventhSense's avatar

@ems
Well I don’t think you can improve much on Daloon and La chica’s interpreations. Sends ‘em lurve

Kafka's avatar

Sounds like Dorian Gray syndrome, sometimes you can live your life for hedonism to find that it is empty in its reward. Also it talks of dependence, The Golden calf is clearly a reference to the Bible. The Israelites fashioned a golden Calf out of the gold that God blessed them with, they did this because Moses was gone so long that they thought God had abandoned them. They needed something to adore.

almajeancayanong's avatar

May I know what are the symbols, figures of speech used in this poem? And is there an IRONY part in this poem? And lastly, which part of the poem does the conflict occur? please help me :( This is my report in our literature.

Thank you :)

wundayatta's avatar

Years ago, I had one interpretation, which you can read above. But now, I see something different.

I guess the irony is that without change, this person would be dead. There is irony in telling a lover that you will not be with them forever, as is usually expected in our society. One day, you will have to change lovers, because to not move on would kill you.

Change, obviously, is what happens to certain mentally ill people who change from mania to depression over and over. These people also have a need for love, and they tend to go through lovers at a very fast pace.

In the poem, the author uses metaphors of putting aside the things of childhood as you grow up, suggesting that perhaps you put aside lovers as you grow up. But I think this is just a sign that the author is unmedicated and perhaps lacks perspective on their illness.

People who aren’t bipolar will laugh at me for seeing it in this poem, but that’s what it’s about for me now

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