Perhaps one of the most important parts of poetry is the ability to expand the perception of readers. When writing, poets try to appeal to the readers senses. A poet uses the sense of imagery, a language that evokes a physical sensation produced by one of the five senses. Although the effects of imagery can be quite complex, the way that images work is simple. The author has many ways to do this throughout the poem, which is obvious in Ariel Dorfman s image in the poem Hope .
When thinking of imagery you tend to use you mind to put things together. For example when Dorfman talks about her son being taken in to custody by the police in another country and left in a car with no license plate, you can just picture what is happening. In addition to that, you may have an emotional association, or connotation that identifies your image. When reading this poem most reader can feel the torture that her son is going through and that in the, next year that they re torturing him, eight month later and he may, might, could still be alive . (Pg 603 Line 50) When choosing images, the poet not only can create a picture in the reader s mind, but also put forward a large number of inspirational images.
Imagery in a poem can be classified in many ways, one being the mood and the other being that atmosphere that the poem is taking place. In the poem, Hope , the mood that is being set is sadness, for that the mother is only hoping that her son will stay alive. The mood is also fearfulness, My son has been missing since May 8 of last year. (Pg 602, line 1) In that statement, the mother can only pray that someday her son will be let free and able to come home. The atmosphere that takes place is that the son is being held and tortured in a foreign land with the will power of stay alive and going home. The atmosphere in the poem is also the fear of the son being killed and the mother never seeing her son again.
When a reader is reading a poem, they can sometimes come up with their own unique experiences, so the images of the poem do not always indicate the same thing to all of its readers. Although most readers will probably see the same picture that is identical to the one of the poet, no two images are alike. Everyone will have their own distinct image of the son being tortured, or being held hostage, but some images remembered will be experiences, whereas others will be imaginative creations.
By conveying what the poet sees and the experiences they have, the images in the poem open reader s minds and enhance their reading with insights and associations. One advantage of imagery is its extreme economy. Just a few words can produce a range of emotions and reactions.
In the poem, Hope , Dorfman expresses a wide range of emotions that can confuse a reader to the point where he/she has to input their own feels. When reading the poem, I felt that the son was being tortured to the point where he just wishes he were dead. The mother is just praying that someday the son will be let free and that they can move on with their lives.
In conclusion, the imagery in this poem is very distinct and clear. It expresses the mother feelings towards her son in the situation that he is in, also the situation that she has to cope with everyday. You also feel the heartbreak that she has, knowing what is happening to her son, but realizing that as long as he is being tortured he is still alive. When thinking about the poem you can see that many people will have different feelings, but in the end you will see and feel the pain that the mother and son are going through.