Ciara Shuttleworth's Sestina

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internal structure in Ciara Shuttleworth's sestina I don't think there is much to untangle here. The six words are permuted but they form completely different meanings. This not only enhances the dramatic effect of the poem, but it also is an example of how powerful and strange the English language is. There are three things to make note of here. The use of multiple meanings, the use of pauses, and the coherency of the lines. It starts off with a simple sentence - "You used to love me well". This has no pauses or interruptions and is a complete, coherent sentence. (this kind of thing is rare in this poem, that's why I mention it here) The poem is about the narrator loving a manipulative person and this line shows broken love". The word "used" is used (lol) here to indicate the past tense. This is significant for two reasons: firstly, this poem makes…show more content…
As there are only six words allowed but so many ideas that need to be expressed, the author must choose carefully which words to use. To enable a multitude of ideas, the author chose to include the words "use" and "well". Both of these words have different meanings in different contexts, and the author cleverly uses context and punctuation to allow more ideas to be expressed in the six words. This shows some interesting nuances in the English language in general. The meanings of words can change dramatically by adding non-words, like line breaks and punctuation marks, but they can also change dramatically simply by rearranging the words. The specific words that have multiple meanings - "use" and "well" have both a positive/neutral and negative connotation. "use" can mean to exploit for one's own goals (negative), or to indicate past tense (neutral). Similarly, "well" can mean a lot (positive) and as a filler word (negative). The poet chooses such versatile words to not only convey more ideas, but convey different types of ideas with opposite emotional

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