2 Poems on Procrastination and Proficiency with Critical Analyses

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“Procrastination” and “Four Friends” are poems written to communicate to society about the need to avoid delay in the steps taken and the need to acquire proficiencies as human beings. The poems have been worked upon to allow the readers to learn more and researchers to do critical analyses of the poems.

Poem 1

Procrastination

Don’t say it is tomorrow

Why not today?

Play when to play

Work when to work

Hard work never kills, it exalts

The Nation

Diligence is the war to stardom

O’ little and comrades

The crabs work on the banks

The fish work in the river

The ants work in the bush

What excuse, man? What excuse?

Make hay while the sun shines

May be too late tomorrow

Work hard.

Poet: Deola Adelakun

Briefs of the poem

The poem “Procrastination” is advice to everyone to abstain from unnecessary delay. The poem captures the reason why it is necessary to act at the right time because unnecessary delay is dangerous. The poem calls our attention to hard work, and diligence but abstains from flippant excuses.

The theme of the poem

The theme “Procrastination” expands the knowledge of the readers and researchers on the central ideas of the poem. It gives more explanations of what the poem is about. Some of the themes are discussed below.

Unnecessary delay is dangerous: The poem portrays the danger that is in delay. It continues to shed clear detail on doing things at the right time because there is time for everything. So, we mustn’t delay or postpone what is supposed to do today. The reason is that there is another assignment tomorrow. Why not today?

Hard work pays: The poet in the poem encourages hard work and diligence. The poem continues to help to say work when to work; hard work never kills, it exalts the nation. The poem also advises that we should be diligent because diligence is the war to stardom.

Avoid flimsy and flippant excuses: The poem warns you against excuses that will not fetch you good results. The poem says we are not a product of excuses. Instead of complaining, face the work and make it done on time. Tomorrow may be too late. Stop excuses!

Language and Poetic Devices

The poet uses language and poetic devices to enrich the poem and to allow the readers to learn more. Also, the use of language and poetic devices help the researchers to do a critical analysis of the poem.

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Stanzas ad lines: The poem has 17 lines. The stanza discusses how to be hardworking, and diligent, and avoid delay and excuses.

Mood/Tone: The poet feels worried about how people procrastinate things. He writes to warn of unnecessary delay and flimsy excuses instead of quick actions.

Rhymes and Rhythm: The poem has a structure that gives a rhythmic effect.

Type of poem: The poem is didactic. It teaches the morals and virtue of hard work and diligence.

Idiom and proverb: The poet makes use of idioms and proverbs such as “Make while the sun shines” (line 15), “The crabs work in the banks” (line 9), “The fishes work in the river” (line 10), “The ants work in the bush” (line 11). The whole poem is proverbial.

Figures of Speech

The poet uses figures of speech to enrich the poem and to allow the readers to learn more. Also, the use of figures of speech helps the researchers to do critical analyses of the poem.

Repetition: The poet makes use of repetitive words to emphasize the messages. The repetitions are “Play” (line 3), “Work” (lines 4, 9, 10, 11,) “Tomorrow” (lines 1, 16), “Complaints” (line 14), and “Excuses” (lines 12, 13).

Metaphor: The poet makes use of metaphor to compare the two things without the comparative words. The metaphorical words are “Diligence is the war to stardom”, (line 7) and “O’ little and comrades” (line 8).

Apostrophes: The poet makes use of apostrophes such as “O’ little and comrades” (line 8), “You are not a product of excuses” (line 14).

Rhetorical question: The poet makes use of rhetorical questions such as “Why not today” (line 2).

Word List and Meanings

Stardom: The state of being famous

Comrades: Friends

Practice Questions

1. Explain the central idea of the poem.

2. What advice is given by the poet?

3. What does the expression ‘make hay while the sun shines’ mean?

Poem 2

Four Friends

These four friends are inseparable

So crucial they are to humans

Intimate they are

If you have them, you are lucky

Each with a wonder!

But different thoughts

Knowledge is good

It decides what to say

Skill is good

It decides how to say it

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Attitude is better

It decides how much to say it

Wisdom is the best

It decides whether to say or not

The four friends are good for you

If you cannot host them

Try to visit each day.

Poet: Deola Adelakun

Briefs of the poems

The poem “Four Friends” depicts four inseparable friends. These friends are very important to humans. They are close to the extent one cannot do without others. If humans have these four friends in their lives, I think that humans are complete. The four friends are skill, wisdom, attitude, and knowledge. The poem captures that the achievements of humans lie in the activities of these four friends.

The themes of the poem

The theme “Four Friends” extends the knowledge of the readers and researchers on the central ideas of the poem. It gives more explanations of what the poem is about. Some of the themes are discussed below.

The theme of knowledge: The poem points to knowledge as an important trait that every human being must have. If one has the trait of knowledge, one should be able to decide what to say. One will not say things anyhow.

The theme of skill: The poem identifies the skill of humans as important as a treasure to have. The skill always helps us know how to decide to say things in the right way. The skill is a good value that can make a person perform proficiently.

The theme of attitude: Where there is no good attitude, there is no good character. The poem tries to portray attitude as the trait that all human beings should have to achieve in life. It makes people decide how mu to say things. It cautions the number of words one must say at a particular time or moment.

The theme of wisdom: Wisdom is the foundation of every good thing. Without wisdom, nothing can be put in place. The poem remembers that wisdom is the best trait every human being must pray for. Wisdom helps decide whether to say things or not. You know everything is good to say, especially at a particular time or season. It is the wisdom that will determine if you will say it. Wisdom is very crucial to human life.

Language and Poetic Devices

The poet uses language and poetic devices to enrich the poem and to allow the readers to learn more. Also, the use of language and poetic devices help the researchers to do a critical analysis of the poem.

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Stanzas and lines: The poem has 17 lines. It has six stanzas. Stanza 1 introduces the four friends; stanza 2 identifies knowledge as the first friend; stanza 3 identifies skill as the second friend; stanza 4 identifies attitude as the third friend while stanza 5 identifies wisdom as the fourth friend. Stanza 1 is a sextet; stanzas 2,3,4, 5and 6 are couplets.

Rhymes and Rhythm: The poem contains normal stressed and unstressed syllables that give rhythmic effects.

Mood/Tone: The poet is eager to get at least some of these friends. He feels admired.

Type of poem: The poem is historical. The poet narrates the history of the four friends namely, knowledge, skill, attitude, and wisdom.

Figures of Speech

The poet uses figures of speech to enrich the poem and to allow the readers to learn more. Also, the use of figures of speech helps the researchers to do critical analyses of the poem.

Metaphor: The poet makes use of metaphor to compare the two things without the comparative words. The Examples of metaphors are “Knowledge is good” (line 8), “Skill is fine” (line 10), “Attitude is better”, (line 12), and “Wisdom is the best” (line 14).

Repetition: The poet makes repetitions to emphasize his messages. Such repetitive words are “Four Friends” (lines 1, 16), “And decides…”(lines 9, 11, 13, 16).

Word List and Meanings

Inseparable: That cannot be separated

Crucial: Important

Intimate: Close

Practice Questions

1. Four friends are _____________ (a) 3 (b) 4 (c) 5 (d) 6

2. ‘Skill’ is ________________ (a) better (b) nice (c) good (d) best

3. ‘Wisdom’ is _______________ (a) the best (b) better (c) good (d) nice

4. What was the decision of ‘Attitude’? (a) What to say (b) How to say things (c) How much to say things (d) Whether to say things or not

5. If you cannot host the four friends, what will be the option? (a) Fight (b) Come (c) Call (d) Visit

Conclusion

The poems “Procrastination” and “four friends” are discussed to teach the right time to do the right things and the need to acquire proficiency which is symbolic of four friends. The researchers are allowed to do critical analyses of the poems.

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