6.04b Countee Cullen
English and Literature
Submitted By thegu11
06.04B Countee Cullen
1. Explain the significance of the metaphor "dark tower."
Cullen’s metaphor of a “ dark tower” is serves as a symbolism to showcase the struggle of African-Americans, and from the dark tower, he sees their struggles and those who oppresses them. The dark tower could also be seen as a means of escape, a means of someone of having the way out from the current situation which African-Americans were in.
2. Explain how the last two lines of the poem "From the Dark Tower" complete the message expressed in the first two lines.
These lines “So in the dark we hid the heart that bleeds, And wait, and tend our agonizing needs” shows me the determination which Cullen saw in African-Americans. His determination for a change is evident in this sentence as he’s sure of an incoming event that will come which will change everything. It’s as if he’s saying subtlety ,soon, a message of hope for those that are going through agonizing pain, that their needs soon will be met. While reading the poem, I believed in Cullen’s words not just as assurance but as a promise, a promise that he’d sure keep.
3. Explain the irony of the title "Incident."
As suggested by the title, the incident in the poem is completely downplayed by Cullen. The incident is so traumatizing to the narrator that he stills remembers every excruciating detail of it; such an incident wouldn’t linger on someone’s mind, if it wasn’t one that affected one very deeply.
4. Write your reaction to this incident.
As a child, the need for acceptance and appreciation is one that is very present at a certain age and to do that to a child, one whom from Cullen’s depiction is very optimistic and joyful, for it to haunt him for so long; I cannot imagine how scarring of an experience it must have been for him.
5. Discuss how Cullen uses diction to create tone.
The diction in which Cullens presents the character begins as one full of leisure when abruptly his tone changes and switches to one that been traumatized. Cullen makes the difference in tone/diction from paragraph 1, 2 and 3 by setting a stage, reaching a climax and ending it with a conclusion that pulls the audience emotionally.