Birago Diop is a poet who is conscious of the continuing presence of the ancestors of the symbolic and meaningful expression of their experience which they have left in the elements around us. In this poem, there is a warning that if we fail to heed to the voice of the ancestors we have lost our hope of protection, psychological defence against the changing fortune of life. The poem has something similar to that of the Bible ‘Vanities’saith the Preacher, all is Vanity (ECCL 1:2)
The following are themes that could be identify in the poem.
- Theme of poverty.
- Theme of helplessness.
- Theme of death
- Theme of heroic deeds.
The poem consist of five stanzas full of imagery and rhetorical question.The poet who was in a worry mood when writing the poem adopts a tone of concern.
- Repetition – Line 1
- Paradox _Line 4-5
- Synodoche _Line 8,10,11,12 etc
- Simile – Line
- Rhetorical question –Line 3,5,11,14,etc
- Personification – stanza 4,line 1 and 2.
ONLINE WORK: Explain the content of the poem.
ASSIGNMENT: Discuss five themes in the poem Vanity