Thursday, 25 February 2016

We are going to kick start this article by looking at the style and figurative. Based on opinion, Nightfall in Soweto by Oswald Mtshali, is a very easy poem to comprehend. It is of 8 unequal stanzas with dictions revealing fear and rage (tremble in line 28, ravaging in line 5, victim in line 9, marauding beasts in line 21; are prove of fear).

Aside the personification in line 22-23, "let loose by cruel nightfall/ from his cage of death". The poem has an interesting figurative end:
"Nightfall! Nightfall!!
You are my mortal enemy.
But why were you ever created?
Why can't it be daytime?
Daytime forever more?"
(apostrophe in line 32 and rhetorical questions from line 34-36)

Other poetic devices in the poem are simile in line 1, alliteration in line 2, synedoche in line 6-7, anaphora from line 16-18, litotes in line 26, symbolism where "cruel nightfall" is the symbol of the white oppressing the black, imageries in the poem (deafening knock, rabid dog, mortal enemy)

Looking at the plot of the poem, the poem shows what the victims (the black) face whenever "the whites" appears at such time of discrimination and apartheid. The oppressors use such dark period to launch attack on targeted victims, they even knock at victims doors
lling the to open up.

The poem has the theme of brutality and injustice (the blacks are brutalized), theme of apartheid (lack of equality as a human right), theme of panic associated with nighttime attacks, theme of oppression and discrimination, theme of helplessness and lamentation.

Oswald M. Mtshali is a South African poet born 1940 in Vryheil, Natal. It was recorded that Mtshali resolved to manual labour when he was not admitted to University of Witwatersrand due to apartheid. The Soweto in the poem means South West Town, during that evil era in South Africa, the blacks lived to serve the whites and there was no freedom for them at all. The time for rest became scary time where they must not shut their eyes.


Samuel C. Enunwa aka samueldpoetry
(the Leo with wings flying)


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