Critical Essay On The Jaguar English Books Essay

A poem I have recently read which is highly linked to a specific location is "The Jaguar" by Ted Hughes. Through the poem, Hughes is making his way by way of a zoo, viewing all the pets such as apes and parrots in their cages, fatigued. Soon he grows to the jaguar's cage and halts to watch the excellent creature, noticing its apparent persistence not to be beaten by the confines of its cage.

Hughes' attitude towards man in clarified from the first verse of the poem. We live instantly given a startling image, "The apes yawn and appreciate their fleas in the sun". This triggers me to envision the apes, fatigued with the boredom and with only their fleas to amuse them. The usage of the word "adore" makes it clear that the apes have little or nothing else to do, and are totally engrossed using their fleas. This undignified, unflattering image of mother nature portrays the writer's contempt towards man for his damage and degradation of mother nature, and effectively catches the substance of the zoo, as this degradation is what people go to see at the zoo, around they claim it isn't, as, by heading to zoos, they support the caging of family pets for his or her own entertainment.

This unflattering view of the pets is prolonged when the poet uses the simile "Like cheap tarts to catch the attention of the stroller with the nut" to describe the way in which the parrots "strut". This suggests that the parrots are like prostitutes; reselling themselves to gain the attention they are starved of. I am also inclined to imagine that, scheduled to them being devote cages, the parrots have been psychologically broken, and today have to "strut" to entertain people, being rewarded for this by receiving food. This makes me feel very sympathetic towards these poor creatures, and guilty for man's cruelty towards them.

The writer's theme of man's cruelty is manufactured very clear at the end of the second verse when we are advised, "It could be painted on the nursery wall". The tone is indignant, flippant and dismissive, conveying the writer's opinion that these pets or animals aren't being cared for with the dignity they deserve. He is contemptuous of man for doing this, which also strengthens my opinion.

There is a stark contrast between your first two verses of the poem and the previous verses, where the writer considers the majestic jaguar. Long vowel tones are used throughout the first two verses, such as in the first brand, "The apes yawn and appreciate their fleas in sunlight", whereas when the writer considers the majestic jaguar, short vowel sounds are being used to achieve an easy rate, such as when we are told "who operates like the others past these arrives", which is completely different set alongside the slow, bored rate of the first two verses. This change of speed indicates a turning point in the poem; the bored stiff, weary creatures of the first two verses are left out, and the article writer goes to start to see the magnificent, energetic, thrilling jaguar. Although this is a good thing - the jaguar has not yet been beaten by its confines - the copy writer means that the jaguar will eventually finish up exhausted and confused by boredom, like the other pets or animals. The contrasting speed also conveys the thoughts of the people to the zoo, as, to start with, these are bored due to the family pets being sleepy and not enjoyable, whereas, on experiencing the jaguar, they become cartoon and fired up, as the jaguar is filled with life and nature. I really believe the jaguar symbolises hope, as it is unaffected by its confines. The caged jaguar also emphasises man's cruelty and stupidity for keeping it in a zoo when it should be allowed to roam free in the open.

We are reminded again of the positioning whenever we are advised, "who works like the others past these arrives/At a cage where in fact the crowd stands, state governments, mesmerized". This conveys the nature of the zoo, as zoos are simply just places in which people stand and appearance at family pets in cages.

The article writer also makes us aware of how spectacular the jaguar is when he says that the jaguar is "hurrying enraged/Through prison darkness after the drills of his eyes". The use of the expression "hurrying enraged" conveys the anger noticed by the jaguar, unlike the other pets or animals that seem defeated by their confines. The metaphor, "the drills of his eye" shows that the jaguar's penetrating eye are focused solely on freedom, rendering it seem like a very powerful creature.

Hughes further emphasises the jaguar's conviction never to be beaten by the cage in which it is being kept. We are told, "there's no cage to him", which is ironic as he is in a cage, but demonstrates he hasn't abandoned - he does not start to see the cage, as he's focused on his freedom to this scope that he won't accept that he'll, tragically, never be free. This notion is continued when we are advised, "More than to the visionary his cell". The usage of the term "visionary" suggests to me that the jaguar is an extremely powerful, religious creature, which is with the capacity of imagining that he has not been put in a cage. The use of the imagery, "The entire world rolls under the long thrust of his heel" is incredibly effective in illustrating the jaguar's power, as it suggests that the jaguar, or perhaps character itself, is the generating pressure of the world, a concept which is further emphasised in the ultimate line of the poem whenever we are given the image, "Within the cage floor the horizons come". The plural "horizons" further emphasises the jaguar's remarkable power, and shows that the jaguar feels he is the driving power of the earth - perhaps pets actually do have a feeling of themselves, like humans.

Throughout the poem, Hughes effectively captures the substance of the zoo as well as making clear his negative thoughts and opinions of man for his arrogance; man thinks nature is inferior, and zoos screen this arrogance correctly. Hughes does not keep man in high respect whatsoever, as he is convinced that man is under the impression that he is in control of mother nature but is destroying it, rather than celebrating it, with zoos. The positioning is exploited in such a way that we have the ability to obviously understand the writer's themes or templates - nature's superiority and man's arrogance and cruelty towards mother nature - as well as to sympathise with the pets and feel contemptuous towards man for his cruelty.

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