Derek Walcott Sample Essay
Of all the poets on the leaving cert course Derek Walcott was my favourite to study. His poetry appeals to me for a number of reasons, such as the way he deals with the notion of ending, death, bereavement, love, religion and colonialism. He grapples with many of the big issues in life. I was really impressed by the way he manages to ask the questions we all muse about in a wholly beautiful and enlightening way. I would recommend Walcott's work to anyone who wonders about mans place in the universe or to anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one or the crushing pain of heartbreak. I personally enjoyed his imaginative style and insightful words.
One of the most fascinating aspects about Walcott's poetry, in my opinion, is his view on the way things end. This notion is explored deeply in his poem entitled ‘Endings‘. He maintains that things "do not explode" the merely "fail" and "fade" until they are no more. They fade as gently and subtly "as the sunlight fades from the flesh". I found this realistic and down to earth observation very striking. This idea is seen once more in his poem 'For Adrian'. Adrian's spirit points out the transience of even the sturdiest objects. They are all being eroded slowly with time, "the furniture is fading, / that wardrobe is as unsubstantial as a sunset". Even our bodies are fragile. So much so that we are transparent to Adrian because he knows we too will come to an end, "I can see through you". Reading the poetry of Derek Walcott is an excellent way to be reminded of the fragility and preciousness of all things. He reminds us to enjoy all things while they last.
Walcott once said that he liked to write poems as a tribute to the dead. He claimed that they are "not dead, but at my elbow." Indeed, I noticed that the theme of loss and the terrible emotions that accompany it can be seen in many of Walcott‘s poetry. He does not flinch away from portraying the true horror of death and loss. In...