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Any Day Coudl Be Your Last

  • Date Submitted: 04/16/2013 10:11 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 61.4 
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Cody Turner
Kevin Corbett
ENGL 1023
Any Day Could Be Your Last
The two poems, “Ozymandias” by Percy Shelly and “To His Coy Mistress” by Andrew Marvel, both have different points of view about how one should react to the passing of time; Shelly with a pessimistic view that trying to last forever is useless, while Marvel has one that is a more optimistic by saying that we should seize the day while we still can. Both poems were able establish their theme well but of the two, “To His Coy Mistress” does a better job. Marvel uses abstract and emotion inducing imagery and tone to engage the reader and make them think about love and the end of time. Through the message the poem conveys in the story, he is able to remind the ready that any day could be your last day, so enjoy it while you can.
Shelley’s poem “Ozymandias” established the theme well, but not as clearly as Marvel was able to. In “Ozymandias” Shelley shows that trying to last forever is useless and no matter how ambitious we are, all things will eventually come to an end. This is symbolized by the ruined statue of Ozymandias “My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my words, ye Mighty, and despair!” this inscription on the statue and the description of how it stands “Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare the lone and level sands stretch far away.” are Shelley’s way of conveying this theme of all things must come to an end and resisting is useless. The inscription on the stone, quoting Ozymandias, proves this theme. He believed that even though time would pass, his image and power would not, and that at the end of time while everything else is crumbling away, his mighty statue would remain. But he was wrong, no matter how ambitious or powerful he was, like everything else, he became dust in the wind. This idea that even a powerful emperor that was once a ruler of men can’t even stand up to the test of time can have an effect on a readers emotions. We think of our rulers as being memorable and...


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