The Artilleryman's Vision Essay

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The Artilleryman's Vision and Its Emotional Drama If there's one thing that the reader of The Artilleryman's Vision should take note of it should be the fact that Whitman shows emotional drama throughout by creating a contrast among the atmospheres in particular scenes through the development of sensory details. Where in the poem is there evidence to prove this notion to be true? In the beginning, he uses words such as "vacant midnight" to compare the veteran's stagnant life now to the chaotic moments he had experienced during the war, "stillness" when he talks about the silence and the calmness of the man's home, and "slumbering" when he describes the man's wife. Initiating the contrast, the man is inevitably encountered with a vision in…show more content…
At this point in the poem, the tone not only continues to be reminiscent of the man's war experiences but starts to become nostalgic as well as he finds himself wondering what these silent couple of seconds mean. Soon enough, he is hit with this realization when the loudness resumes--one that is shown to be described in a completely different context. Rather than coming in aggressive contact with the opposing force, the soldiers cheer tumultuously amongst themselves in the celebration of a hard-fought victory that he describes in an unusual oxymoron: devilish exultation or a feeling of great pleasure and elation over the fact that he and his people have fought to the death and have just won the battle. The dark skies are lit with the sparks of "vari-color'd rockets", also knows as fireworks, amid the high spirits of celebration and the man is filled with an uncontainable joy. That Whitman's poem generates a stagnant and emotional plateau would be a lie for an ongoing fluctuation of emotions is apparent throughout the multiple transitions that represent the contrast among the stillness of the man's home, the heavy sounds of explosives, and the cries of victory and

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