Literary Analysis – Once by the Ocean

Literary Analysis-Once by the Ocean There are many different literary devices used in this poem.

All of these devices help to make the poem more understandable. Two of the main poetic devices used in this poem are imagery and symbolism. Another device used is similes. One example of symbolism used in the poem is when the author says, “And thought of doing something to the shore That water never did to land before. ” (Robert Frost) This could symbolize the waves being the end of the world through a very powerful natural disaster.

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The author uses this symbolism to set the theme of the poem. An example of a simile used in association with the symbolism is the mention of the clouds being like hair, “The clouds were low and hairy in the skies, Like locks blown forward in the gleam of eyes. ” (Robert Frost) This simile is used to help set the mood of the theme which is dark and gloomy. Another example of symbolism that the author uses is the line, “The shore was lucky in being backed by cliff. ” (Robert Frost) Here the author is saying that the shore was lucky it had a friend.

He is saying that the shore is not strong enough and that it needs something to help it against this great catastrophe that is the wave. The author once again brings back a dark theme, “It looked as if a night of dark intent,” (Robert Frost) showing that not only is something disastrous about to happen, but it has the intent to do something destructive. The last piece of symbolism in the poem is when the author says “Before God’s last Put out the light was spoken. ” (Robert Frost) This means that God is not going to help with this disaster and he is going to let this devastating attack happen.

Imagery is an important part in any poem because it allows the reader to give themselves a mental picture while reading the poem so they can easily relate to it.

The author uses imagery in the first couple of lines to create a dark and scary image in your head that might remind you of the end of the world or a Tsunami. Along with the dark atmosphere the author is starting to create in your mind, he is also adding a little bit of hope in your thoughts when he refers to the cliff and continent as allies in this battle against the wave.

Although just as before, this hope leaves your thoughts when the day turns into a “night of dark intent. ” (Robert Frost) This shows that not only is something coming, but something terrible is coming, the end of the world. He also says that “Someone had better be prepared for rage.

” (Robert Frost) That someone is not just one person, but everyone on the earth. To end the poem the author uses intense imagery to add to your imagination, “There would be more than ocean-water broken. (Robert Frost) This means that not only will the ocean waves be broken but the waves will destroy everything in sight and “break” everything as well. The last line the author uses is “Before God’s last Put out the light was spoken”. (Robert Frost)

This disaster that’s about to hit the world is too powerful for God to handle, or maybe it is that God is finally turning his back on the world he once created. In the bible God said, “Let there be light,” (The New International Version, Gen.

. 3) and now God is letting there be darkness. This poem holds all the literary devices needed to help you understand the meaning. There are many examples of imagery, symbolism, and similes, and they are all used very well. They also make it very easy to see things from your own perspective. Works Cited Frost, Robert.

“Once by the Ocean-a poem by Robert Frost. ” Famous Poetry Online. N. p. , n.

d. Web. 17 July 2010. The Holy Bible: New International Version. New York: Harper, 1983.