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I disagree with the 'deceptively sweet'. I feel that the poet is trying to emphasise how the plan to civilise suburbia has backfired and you are now left with a very boring place. In the poem I think 'Sunday' and 'August' are used as adjectives to add to the boringness. E.g August is in between seasons, not nice and sunny, but not autumn either- hence it is lifeless and boring. Although the hints of negativity in the first and second stanzas are very subtle, the poet is obviously criticising the city planners in the last stanza - "the insane faces of the political conspirators". I think that this shouldnt be taken literally, as if there is corruption. I believe more that Atwood is trying to emphasise that the planners have over done it and in "perfecting" the world they have taken away its beauty and unpredictability.
THe planners starts with a dreary tone, mentioning dry, sunday and august. The poem is written in a bitter tone, one that clearly shows that the poet is irritated - or its better to say, revolted - by the developments in the world. All that has resulted in a less beautiful world, one that now contains man's system, no more controlled by nature. Since man has now molded the world for his own selfish needs, he has overlooked the pied nature, one that has deformities but they are necessary for beauty to be recognised. If you just have beauty around you, you will fail to appreciate it. Wha Atwood is trying to say is the same. Man is bent upon just perfecting the world, erasing its "flaws". Atwood is irked by this. She has used severe criticism, one composed of strong words.
In general, I'd say the poem starts out deceptively sweet. Suburban life is described as cookie cutter and perfect. The planners seem to have done their job. As the poem goes on, we see indications of corruption in real estate and it's clear that there is abuse of power, and things are not so ideal in suburbia!
To add on to the above post, I would suggest that the speaker of the poem becomes more and more irate at the fact that the "perfection" of the city is in reality, less and less idealistic. The irony exists in the fact that the planners certainly did not "plan" for people to feel as the speaker does.
"The city planners" is a short poem by Margaret Atwood in which she starts of with a gentle soothing tone " residential Sunday streets " these words describe a residential area on a Sunday which is usually calm and people resting at home after their hectic week at work . Dry August sunlight says that It was warm . The whole tone changes the moment when the words what offends us is used and then it turns into an irritated and frustrated tone . atwood is irritated by the city planners being so perfect making nature imperfect
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