Essay of Sayeed Abubakar
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The poem “Poem of Hatred,” by Sayeed Abubakar centers on the idea of the stupidity and vices of humanity. The poem itself gives a revolutionary call, and the poet conveys his message by using politics and the psychological behavior of humans. His strong use of words draws out the reader’s emotions, and allows them to comprehend the dark theme of the overall poem. Each stanza also contains a variety of different sub-topics, which can vary from historical events to the overall behavior of humans, seen as a society. The emotion plays as a trigger that helps the reader comprehend the poem clearly. Many elements are building blocks to his poems. Therefore, the major elements Abubakar implements into his work affect how the readers comprehend the theme because his strong use of diction, the various uses of figure of speeches, and the clear imagery presented throughout the poem.
The selection of words used within “Poem of Hatred,” expresses the main point of the poem. The most commonly used word in the whole poem is “fear”. The use of “fear” is a word commonly associated with the tone of hatred and dark themes. Multiple words also harbor the idea of fear, as seen through the line, “Which way a mad dog detests water for its hydrophobia” (Abubakar 1). The word “hydrophobia” itself, literally means the “fear of water”. Rather than using the word “thirst”, the poet implies the dog has a serious and ironic disability, while the word “thirst” could simply imply the dog has a minor craving for fluids.
Readers can feel the mood of the poem, given the various deep, melancholy words. Abubakar also includes many irreversible and incurable diseases humans face to darken the mood as a whole. “But tell me, o ass men. Which cancer makes men such boneless like earth-worms? Being affected by tuberculosis” (Abubakar 5). Diseases such as cancer, tuberculosis offer a sense of hopelessness, and weakness in people’s minds. This weakness crumples a person’s mind until they fight back the idea of death. This strong emotional behavior displays the relentless personality of people, in which many can see is a human’s ignorant, distasteful trait. Overall, the diction in each stanza, lines express the overall mood of hatred.
Multiple lines use various types of figure of speech, such as metaphors and similes. Not only is its sole purpose is to make the poem sound more creative, it also continues to build off the central theme of hatred. The diction Abubakar implement into each line builds his clever metaphors and similes. “When people detest war and death like a dead rotten rat that spreads intolerable bad smell” (Abubakar 1). This line compares the attitude of humans towards war and death, to the smell of a rat corpse. The poet implies the bitter, sour smell of a dead rat is comparable and similar to a human’s attitude towards death. Death and the physical traits of death are what many humans fear. However, fear is not the only trait humans harbor.
This specific poem also points out other flaws, such as lust, greed, ignorance etc. “And a man is always like King Solomon, at whose beckoning finger the Queen of Sheba along with her state gets belonged to him” (Abubakar 2). These lines compare the general men to King Solomon, who in Jewish culture, was seen as a wealthy and respected man, until he was tempted into greed and lust. As for women, Abubakar compared them to the Queen Sheba, who also in Jewish culture, gave King Solomon many goods and nurtured his greed. “Along with her state gets belonged to him” (Abubakar 2). The metaphors and similes the poet are also a technique at symbolizing certain aspects, such as humans and animals.
Another element Abubakar certainly used in his poem was imagery. The manner in which he implies physical descriptions helps the reader perceive what the poet was intentionally envisioning. Imagery also sets a physical description of the emotions and tone of the poem. “So that they could leap into the fathomless beauty of war if the battle drum was heard beating” (Abubakar 3). This brief description pieces together the mental image of battle and war, which was a fear stated in the first line of the entire poem. “If the battle drum was heard beating,” also opens another sense; hearing. Readers can assume the sound of a battle drum beating, which signals the start of battle. Through his technique of imagery, Abubakar can forge the image of the past.
However, he can also create the appearance of a future, devastated world. “That habitation then can be called a country of worthless people, where the sun should not rise ever, it should not rain, and the crops should not grow in the fields” (Abubakar 6). In these few lines, the poet imagines a world in which humans should not be allowed to survive. This idea of an imperfect world bends towards the theme of disdain, as well the imagery of the world in the past.
Many other elements of poetry were also present throughout the poem, “Poem of Hatred.” However, these main elements were more prominent amongst the others. His techniques greatly expressed the feeling and theme of hatred, rebellion and flaws of human civilization as a whole. Thusly, Abubakar succeeded in conveying the theme because of his use of clear, intriguing words, applying metaphors and similes, and creating a visual image for readers to have an easier understanding of his view towards human life.