Evaluating Literary Comparison: Harlem By Langston Hughes

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Emily Goodman ENGL 102-75 10/4/2015 “Simile and Metaphor Short Writing” Evaluating Literary Comparisons The poem “Harlem” by Langston Hughes uses detailed imagery to highlight the consequences of dreams not followed. The simile that stands out to me is "Does it stink like rotten meat?” (Hughes 6). This suggests that dreams can have an expiration date. I compare a dream forgotten like meat that has gone bad in the back of a refrigerator. Therefore, when a dream is left unachieved for too long one can start to feel unaccomplished with their goals, leaving the same sour taste in their mouth as rotten meat. The putrid smell is what reminds a person to make a change. I selected this simile because it resonates with my belief that waiting too long for opportunities will result in an unfulfilled life. I felt that Hughes incorporated this phrase into his poem knowing the image would engage the reader’s senses making for a powerful point. This simile adds to the effect of the poems vile tone while making it unforgettable.…show more content…
The other verses of the poem suggest dreams put off wear on the dreamer, whereas exploding is the act of destruction or effect of carrying the weight of regret for so long. In a poem full of similes I feel Hughes added this metaphor to the end to emphasize the point he was making on dreams set aside leading to disaster and harm towards oneself or other people. The metaphor effects the poem by giving off a very intense and negative feeling to the

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