What literature techniques are used in "O Where Are You Going?" by Auden?What type of techniques does Auden use in this poem?

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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Auden uses the following poetic devices (literature techniques) in the poem "O Where Are You Going?":

-Alliteration:the repetition of consonant sound in a line of poetry.

"Reader to rider"; "fatal to furnaces"; "midden whose odors will madden"; "gap is the grave"; "fearer to farer"; "path to the pass"; "dusk will delay"; "diligent looking discover"; "granite to grass"; "horror to hearer"; "twisted trees"; "swiftly the figure comes softly"; "spot on your skin is a shocking"

-Personification-: "odors will madden"- the giving of human characteristics to non-human, non-living things.

Here, the use of alliteration is by far the most prominent literary device used in the poem. The use of alliteration gives the poem a sense of "sing-song". This lends itself to the fact that conversations are taking place between two people and changing as the poem moves along in action. This is similar to that of a fairy-tale or epic poem.


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