Monday, 29 June 2015

This article will speak of the poet, the themes, the mood, the figures of speech, etc.

This article is suitable for; (a) All lovers of poetry (b) All lovers of Literature-In-English (c) Students for WASSE/WAEC, NECO, GCE, A-LEVEL, IJAMB examination (d) Students of English Language And Literature In Universities, Polythenics, Colleges of Educations, etc.

Ambush is a poem written by Gbemisola Adeoti, a teacher, poet, editor, author, etc. He is a Nigerian belonging to Yoruba ethnic group. A member of Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA). Gbemisola Adeoti works as a lecturer at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.

Ambush has four themes: (1) the theme of hopelessness (2) the theme of helplessness (3) the theme of danger (4) the theme of deceit.
Hopelessness in a nation full of hardworking people appeared in the language of the poem speaker. With the use of symbolism, whale s
tood as the symbol of hopelessness swallowing every effort and attempt of the citizen to the extent of petering out their desires and made them return home without catching a fish.

Anothe theme of the poem is helplessness. How correct is the statement? When the sabre-toothed tiger cried "deep in the glade", the poem speaker made the readers realize that "infants shudder home" and adults that stood their grounds only did so because such troubles or tribulations were inevitable. Besides their helplessness towards the tiger, they also had no help against the hawk of disasters hover above them and none to redirect from the path where the land await ambush them "toward the snare of possibilities".

The theme of danger is next; and virtually all the lines of the poem exemplified it. The poet made it known with the use of following words like "swallows", "cries", "snatch", "tribulations", "disaster" and created dreadful agents of death like "a giant whale", "a sabre-toothed tiger", "a giant hawk" to carry out fear and danger.

The theme of deceit can be seen crystal clear at the end part of the poem where those walking toward the right direction are ambushed and misdirected.

The structure of the poem is very easy to understand since the poem does not take a rigid classic structure like that of The Pulley by George Herbert [you can view The Structure of the Pulley by George Herbert]
Ambush is a 21 lines poem that is void of specific rhythm and end rhyme pattern; not broken into verses. With the aid of symbolism, metaphor, imagery, etc. the poet's opinion is flatly tabled in front of the readers. "The land" which appeared many times in the poem plus the metaphorical animals reveal how the masses of a badly governed society suffer (standing at the receiving end). Each opinion of the poem speaker is further explained with the introduction of a relative pronoun "that" for instance in line 2, "that swallows the sinker" in line 9 as well, "that cries deep in the glade". Though Ambush by Gbemisola Adeoti is not structured in a multi-stanza form but each mention of "The land" gives birth to a fresh opinion, which divides the poem into four (4) nonvisual stanzas.

The poem has a tone of sincerity and made the poem readers feel a mood of revelation, realising the evil plots of the land or in the land.

The Figures Of Speech
There symbolism in the poem where the whale symbolized hopelessness, tiger symbolized helplessness and danger, hawk and the title of the poem "ambush" both symbolized danger. The land was personified and the land was also used as a metaphor by comparing it to a giant whale, a sabre-toothed tiger, a giant hawk, a dangerous person or an animal laying ambush. There was repetition of the following: the land, a giant, Peter, dusk, etc. Alliterations in the poem were "swallows the sinker", "Peter with Petered out desires", "the land lies". The poem also made use of biblical allusion of Peter fishing but could not catch any fish until Jesus Christ directed him to the right place to cast his net (John 21:3-6).

"The land lies patiently ahead" also has the "the land" personified and portrayed the land a tyrant putting the victims in a condition of hopeless.

To Narrate Ambush In Prose Form:-

The land we live is more like a giant whale that disrupts the efforts of fishermen where all achievable goals are made to be a waste of time and effort.
The land we live now treats its dwellers like prey; kids and adults live in fear of possible bestial attack.
The land we live is so full of contagious diseases that mingle with our atmosphere seen everywhere like a giant hawk hovering in the sky.
In conclusion, the land we find ourselves is such a slavery zoo. Whoever tries to escape is ambushed and brought to book.

Similarity Between Ambush by Gbemisola Adeoti And The Dining Table by Gbanabom Hallowell

The tone of both poems is sad. Not only that, the speaker of both poems are victims; victim of bad governance in the poem "Ambush" by Gbemisola Adeoti but victim of civil attack in the poem "The Dining Table" by Gbanabom Hallowell. Both poems share the theme of danger and destruction: "The land is a sabre-toothed tiger/ that cries deep in the glade/ while infants shudder home/ the grizzled ones snatch their gut/ from bayonets of tribulation" (according to line 8-12 of Ambush by Gbemisola Adeoti)
"The table/ that gather us in an island where guerrillas/ walk the land while crocodiles/ surf..." (according to line 9-12 of The Dining Table by Gbanabom Hallowell)

(1) Narrate Ambush by Gbemisola Adeoti in a prose form.
(2) Discuss how the use of poetic devices portray the feelings of the poet.
(3) Describe Ambush As Metaphor Of societal Evil
(4) From your understanding of the poem Ambush, what messages are passed across by the poet?


Samuel C. Enunwa aka samueldpoetry
(the soaring Leo with wings in the sky)

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