In Literature, we read the poem A Birthday by Christina Rossetti. Our teacher, Pato Chujman asked us to analyze it. I worked with Lucia Roggero, Florencia Araya and Josefina Catani. The following video is about an actress reading the poem aloud:
We had to answer the following questions:
a. What is the theme?
Love, relationship, celebration, religion.
b. What is the tone?
Happy, excited, in love, joyful, glad, etc.
c. What is the main difference between the two stanzas?
In stanza one the voice talks more about nature and in stanza two she speaks of material things.
Ex. Stanza 1: ‘Whose boughs are bent with thickest fruit.’
Stanza 2: ‘Work it in gold and silver grapes.’
d. How are the similes in the poem appropriate for the romantic longings the speaker feels?
She’s explaining how she feels with precious thing because her love is precious to her.
e. How is the metaphor of the birthday appropriate?
It is a metaphor because she feels like she was reborn with this new love. It is like a new beginning, a way to finally be with the person that is right for her. Also a birthday can be associated with a celebration, and love is something she cherishes and wants to celebrate.
f. Make a list of religious symbols. What do they mean in the poem?
“And peacocks with a hundred eyes” is a metaphor that means that God sees through the eyes of nature, of the animals. “Doves” are white birds and white birds represent peace.