"When Death Comes," "Dover Beach," and "Fire and Ice"
Qhat do these three poems say about the fundamental nature of human condition? In other words, what do the poems say about what it means to be human in the world? How do you want to live your life? You've heard the expression, "Life is not a rehearsal;" how do you want to look back on your life in later years?
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"When Death Comes" seems to show the fragility of life as human death "like hungry bear in autumn" can take it away. The poem seems to emphasize the reality of mortality for the human condition through various forms of death personification, similes, and metaphors, such as "when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse," "when death comes like an iceberg between the shoulder blades," etc. I also feel that Oliver's poem also seems to show humans' natural curiosity about death as she asserts, "I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering: what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?"
Besides the acceptance of death, this poem also reiterates the need to live life fully with her ...
Various poems are briefly explicated in terms of life themes.