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For my poem explication, I have chosen to analyze “Musee Des Beaux Arts” by W.H. Auden through a psychoanalytic perspective. I believe that the poem’s morals center around the use of figurative language to reveal the deeper meaning that lies beneath. While also having people think about what the author is truly trying to interpret. To begin, suffering is used to convey the interpretation of how death affects us emotionally while we continue to live through life. This theme is quite prominent throughout the whole entry where it can be seen that suffering is capitalized on within the first few sentences. “About suffering they were never wrong. The old Masters: how well they understand their human position: how it takes place.” (Auden 1-3) Auden was able to portray suffering in a way that most people would never see. It goes on in the background while others sit, eat, and go about their normal lives. Death looms over us every day unwillingly and without us recognizing it at first.

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Auden highlights the fact that when it comes to death some people like to believe that we’re all just awaiting death, even if not vocalized on it’s still always there looming over us like a shadow. “How when the aged are reverently, passionately waiting for the miraculous birth, there always must be.” (Auden 5-6) Auden uses a lot of figurative language to show how deep down death is inescapable, the very thought of it though frightening we as people try to make it more ‘pleasant.’ People believe that death is seen as being reborn which is exactly the kind of message Auden was trying to convey. Death plays a major role in life, forgetting the role that death plays in our lives would be futile. We never forget the mark that death leaves on us whether that be from the loss of a loved one or pet. However, in the finality of the poem, it is seen that Auden’s perspective shifts, and this whole interpretation of death changes. “Something amazing, a boy falling out of the sky. Had somewhere to get to and sailed calmly on”. (Auden 9-10) This line discloses how death isn’t meant to be feared because fear controls life, your life.

Death is just your energy progressing and evolving into something else, though weird to think about this shouldn’t be scary but seen more as a calm deep sleep. To conclude this poem’s explication I believe that the poem’s morals center around the use of figurative language to reveal the deeper meaning that lies beneath. Auden uses suffering as the main point while also having people think about what the author is truly trying to interpret.

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Explicatory Essay on W.H Auden’s Poem.
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