Ghazal by Mimi Khalvati

  • Created by: chloe
  • Created on: 21-05-13 13:14

What is Ghazal about?

Ghazal is a love poem in which a speaker seeks to secure the love and attention of another. The precise details are unclear, but the poem gives the impression that the feelings of the speaker are not shared by the object of their actions.

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What is the structure of Ghazal

Like a traditional ghazal poem, this poem is made up of a sequence of two-line stanzas (or couplets). The two lines of the couplets do not rhyme but the end of each couplet does, partly through the repetition of the word 'me'.

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Use of metaphors

Ghazal makes extensive use of metaphors to explore the relationship between the speaker and the one they love. Many of the metaphors present pairs of items or objects that complemet each other, reflecting the way in which the speaker sees the relationship.

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'rhyme' and 'refrain'

This is describing the two sides of the relationship. This metaphor suggests a sense of the two lovers being part of a larger whole. It also connects the two through poetry and creativity. The speaker sees themselves as a 'refrain' while their lover is the 'rhyme' in the poem. As a refrain infers that the speaker sees themselves as less inventive, original and important than the lover.

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'the serpents tail, charmer' 'weave a spell'

In the fourth stanza the speaker uses the metaphor of a snake charmer with their snake, another instance of a pairing that is beneficial. The reference to a 'spell' hints at the powerful majic of love in its ability to transform or change, even to 'subdue' a venomous snake.

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'laurel leaf in your crown' 'tree's bark'

Stanza five presents a metaphor of the speaker as a leaf from a tree; but the only contact they have is through the trees bark. Perhaps the speaker feels as if they are living in the shadows. The writer is creating a charecter of low self-esteem; the object of their affection is a high achiever, worthy of laural crowns while the speaker is just a leaf inside of it.

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'marry' 'hawk to my shadow' 'moth to my flame'

The speaker is offering to change shape to appeal to the one they love. The use of the word 'marry' is a pun,meaning to match up, but also showing hope for a relaltionship. Both the images 'hawk to my shadow' and 'moth to my flame' contain the idea of destruction and irresistible attraction. The speaker is well aware of the destructive nature of the feelings they have.

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references to the idea a lover can complete a pers

'I am the grass and you the breeze' and 'dew to bedew me' are both natural images of pairs and things that together enhance each other. Both images are concerned with pysical closeness and suggest the idea that the love of another person is an experience wich causes transformation or change. Grass is made to move and create a rhythimic sound when the wind blows through it. 

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'Ill be twice the me I am'

This is a key line of the poem as it exprsses the speaker's opinion that by recieving the love of the person they desire they will become greater, as if having the love of another is a powerful force which increases a person's worth.

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love and longing is positive and negative

'yours is th iron fist in the velvet glove' are contrasting images that reflact both pleasure and pain

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  • In Paris with you- feelings of longing for someone
  • The farmers bride- Both show feeling of longing for a partners affection but the farmers bride wishes to subude and control his wife rather then being prepared to change like the speaker in Ghazal
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