Why does the speaker refer to "jewels of fish"?

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Sandile Dikeni is a poet from South Africa. He became involved in politics as a student in the 1980s during the days of apartheid, when a minority of whites ruled over the black majority in South Africa, and was even imprisoned for a time because of his convictions. Since the arrival of democracy in South Africa, he has worked as a poet, a journalist, and a political and social commentator. His conviction is that poetry gives him a voice that has the power to move people, even for political purposes.

In "Love Poem for My Country," Dikeni uses anthropomorphism, personification, metaphor, and other literary devices to praise the landscape and fauna of his homeland. In his viewpoint, every aspect is beautiful, even things that we would not normally associate with beauty. For instance, birds with proud eyes don't just fly in the sky but adorn it, which means enhance its appearance. Reptiles are proud as they caress the surface of the land; to caress means to touch or stroke something in a loving manner. The baboons are joyful as they hop from boulder to boulder in the mountains. These are all exaggerations due to the joy that Dikeni feels in his homeland.

When Dikeni writes of the "jewels of fish" in the "blue of the sea," he is using the same type of loving exaggeration to describe the land he loves. "Jewels of fish" is a metaphorical expression to show the beauty of the colorful shining fish as they swim in the blue waters of the ocean. The poet is comparing the fish to jewels of lovely rock that people find under the ground and value highly. The poet is not only commenting upon the attractive appearance of the fish, but also on their value, just as he highly values every disparate part of his country.

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