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The power of "The Alarm Clock," by Mari Evans, relies on its analogy involving two kinds of awakening--a literal one by an alarm clock and a figurative one by the words of a prejudiced young white girl. But repeated elements are used to convey this meaning. The poem begins and ends with reference to the literal alarm clock that awakens one with a jolt. Repeated words such as "this mornin'" frame the metaphorical awakening involving an incident at a drug store. "Quick" is used twice to refer to each awakening. The hurtful girl's words cause the speaker to wake up suddenly as does the loud ringing of the alarm clock. The poem is written with a loose conversational structure. The ellipsis are used 3 times to show a seeming break in thought as if to mimic the speaker's stream of consciousness. Even though rhyme is not used, there are certain sounds repeating--the "in'" ending is used three times--twice in "mornin" and once for "hangin" which also serve to connect the two awakenings.
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