Saturday, May 4, 2013

Elizabeth Beasley Response 5/7

Response #5

The Kraken
Pg. 1 of English Victorian Poetry

Type: Sonnet
Rhyme Scheme: the ABABCDDCEFEAAFE à pattern suggests that it is modeled on the Petrarchan (Italian)

Background story:
The Kraken is of a gigantic sea-monster, compared to that of an enormous squid or cuttlefish. It supposedly preys upon sailors off the coast of Norway. The kraken is known for its ability to drag down large ships with the help of a powerful whirlpool, created when the creature surfaces.
Poem Break Down:

Below the thunders of the upper deep;

Below the sounds of the ocean’s crashing waves
Far, far beneath in the abysmal sea, 

Deep down in the ocean
His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep
The kraken sleeps some place where he will not be disturbed, by neither man or light
The Kraken sleepeth: faintest sunlights flee
The kraken is a sleep so far down into the ocean that not even light from the sun can reach him
About his shadowy sides: above him swell

The only site of him is his shadow; he is the deepest creature in the see, every creature living above the kraken fears him
Huge sponges of millennial growth and height;
Millennial meaning a million years describes the krakens age; over this time period the kraken has been growing and becoming bigger and stronger
And far away into the sickly light
Deep down in the see where there is only darkness

From many a wondrous grot and secret cell

Grot meaning cavern or cave; the place where the creature resides
Unnumbered and enormous polypi

Polypi meaning sea animal
Winnow with giant arms the slumbering green.

Winnow meaning to remove or to separate
There hath he lain for ages and will lie

Lain meaning asleep, he has been a sleep for a long time, having not been disturbed
Battening upon huge sea-worms in his sleep,

Eating sea worms in his sleep
Until the latter fire shall heat the deep;

Until he is awaken by the end of days; the apocalyptic fire in Revelations (judgment day)
Then once by man and angels to be seen,

Man and the heavens will witness his death        
In roaring he shall rise and on the surface die.
An ungodly creature will be sleighed by the opening of the heavens on judgment day; it is an inversion of the death of man, who lives on the surface and then is drug down into the sea to die

Summary: The poem is about the death of the legendary Kraken. The Kraken is a sea monster that lives at the deepest point of the ocean, away from light and any other creature. The kraken is known for its ability to pull down even the largest ship with its powerful whirlpool. A sleep for (a million?) years, this creature is woken up by the end of days. He rises to the surface as the gate hell open up only to die. His death is an inversion of the death he has brought on to man, who lives on the surface and then is drug down into the sea to die.

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