River God Notes

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  • Created on: 30-05-13 13:31
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The River God _ [Stevie Smith]
Structure and Form
Irregular line lengths + lack of breaks
One continuing stanza + non-metrical form
Ever flowing river
Long and short lines
River is changing shape, much like the narrators attitude keeps changing
Rhyming couplets
Deceiving just like surface of a river b/c present the narrators thought as organised and perfect yet
actually the content reveals the disturbed inner thoughts
Clumsy and childlike b/c beats in each line is inconsistent
"I may be old"
Self-deprecated (humble) yet defensive tone.
Misleading b/c audience feel sympathetic
"MY fish float"
Control and ownership
"...especially women"
Sinister and seedy undertone
At this point we begin to distrust him
"Drowning" and "Clowning"
Sinister juxtaposition
Jaunty language implies it is a game
Cruelty and fun is combined = sadistic
"Hi yih, yippity yap"
Contrast of tone to previous morbid words of "drowning"
Lack of empathy
"Beautiful" (x4 repeated)
Gentle, loving tone contrasts with previous menacing tone
"I", "My"
Personal pronouns indicates isolation or self-obsession
"Oh", "so", "go"
Boastful and teasing expressed through assonance
"Wash away the fear"
No power to change her expression
Weak when it comes to love

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The lady waits"
Doesn't belong in his world
He is condemned to loneliness
Never experiences love
Enjambment places stress on the word
Fear and insecurity
"Fear", "her", "river"
Half-rhymes indicate lack of confidence and reveal insecurity
"Look at me with."
Holding back info.
Convincing himself as well as audience of her love for him
"Beautiful" contrasts with the description of himself as being "smelly" and "old".…read more


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