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Edward Thomas 'The Owl'
Posted by: Hayley (---.seac.broadband.ntl.com)
Date: May 17, 2005 12:51PM

any details about this poem please. Need to give presentation on it and don't know where to start.

Re: Edward Thomas 'The Owl'
Posted by: Linda (---.l1.c2.dsl.pol.co.uk)
Date: May 17, 2005 01:08PM

Downhill I came, hungry, and yet not starved,
Cold, yet had heat within me that was proof
Against the North wind; tired, yet so that rest
Had seemed the sweetest thing under a roof.

Then at the inn I had food, fire, and rest,
Knowing how hungry, cold, and tired was I.
All of the night was quite barred out except
An owl's cry, a most melancholy cry.

Shaken out long and clear upon the hill
No merry note, nor cause of merriment,
But one telling me plain what I escaped
And others could not, that night, as in I went.

And salted was my food, and my repose,
Salted and sobered too, by the bird's voice
Speaking for all who lay under the stars,
Soldiers and poor, unable to rejoice.

It sounds as if he has been travelling and arrived at an inn for the night. At first he is thankful that he is now very comfortable, but the cry of the owl reminds him that there are many people outside still, cold, hungry and miserable and it spoils his own good mood.

Re: Edward Thomas 'The Owl'
Posted by: lg (---.dhcp.trlk.ca.charter.com)
Date: May 17, 2005 01:19PM

Soldiers and poor, unable to rejoice.

As with most of Thomas' work this was written as a result of his association with WWI.


Re: Edward Thomas 'The Owl'
Posted by: Hugh Clary (---.denver-03rh15rt.co.dial-access.att.net)
Date: May 17, 2005 01:57PM

Why an owl's cry?

[www.bartleby.com] />
Symbol of bad luck, bad weather, or death perhaps.

[www.owlpages.com] />
Oddly, there is such a creature as a barred owl - coincidence?


Re: Edward Thomas 'The Owl'
Posted by: Pam Adams (---.bus.csupomona.edu)
Date: May 17, 2005 03:29PM

You could look at rhyme scheme, how he breaks it into stanzas, alliteration.

The phrase 'salted' is interesting. Salt is often seen as a welcoming device (someone who has eaten your bread and salt deserves hospitality), but here it seems to be 'over-salted.'


Re: Edward Thomas 'The Owl'
Posted by: Hugh Clary (---.phoenix-01rh15-16rt.az.dial-access.att.net)
Date: May 18, 2005 10:55AM

Brewer's has several 'salt' references, but none seems to accurately fit Thomas's theme.

[www.bartleby.com] />
Perhaps like salted meat? Dry, hard, tastless?

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