There are two poetic devices used in the poem “Death, Be Not Proud” written by John Donne they are apostrophe and paradox. The poem is about the speaker not being afraid of death and that it is just a stage that people pass through. Apostrophe is defined as addressing something that is non-human in hopes that it would respond to what is being said. The speaker is talking directly to death as thinking it will feel weak and know that it is an unimportant event to people. The speaker tells death “Mighty and Dreadful, for thou are not so” that no matter what people say death is not feared and has no right to be thinking that it is. (Donne 2) The truth of death to the speaker is it is not the end or final stage that people fear it is; death is just the stage that takes people to eternal happiness. Death takes our bodies away but our minds and spirit live on forever in a place of peace and serenity.
The second poetic device is Paradox which is an apparently contradictory statement that, upon examination, makes sense (see McMahan et al1187). There are many paradoxes some are that death can not really stop someone from living, and that death will cease to exist. The paradoxes are saying that death should not be feared because it really is not the end. Death is not to be thought of as scary because death is just a sudden event to a person but does not have the final say so over a person’s life. These poetic devices are good to have in this poem because it makes the reader think and question their beliefs in death and faith of an afterlife.