This poem has quite a dark tone with the constant talk of shadows, smoke and the mention of the fires of hell, the devil and life after we are gone from this earth. "As in hell the devils might poke about through our souls, after scraps of appetite with which to stimulate themselves." It also seems to give a feeling of sadness at the things that are still to come. "knowing al that he does about us, how can he avoid a hatred of men?"
There is also a small feeling of reflective nostalgia towards the end when he is giving the image of the radio and the voices and music still traveling on.
This poem explores the ideas of change through the comparison of what was, what is and what will inevitably be. It explores the idea that too much change can be bad and when we leave this world it will be a wasteland of things that once worked but no longer do. It compares the old fashioned radio with its dangling wire and its voices still traveling around in the space, no longer being heard. The author also gives a sense of fascination through the voice of the poem, as if showing what the world would will be like once we are gone it will simply be fill of things that once worked but no longer do. "Standing where i see the mirage of the city I realise I am in the future. This is how it shall be after men have gone. It will be made of things that worked."Pleasantville follows the lives of two teenagers who mystically get drawn back into a 1950’s fictional television sitcom, Pleasantville. It depicts a highly stereotypical image of the 1950’s lifestyle. The film explores change in vast variety of ways. As the town people discover sex, art, books, music and the notion of nonconformity, colour emits into their black and white world. In turn it is a broad liberal response to the conservative works to idealize the 50’s. the vision of the conventional America changes from a sun-drenched suburban street to a world full of emotion.
'Flames and dangling wire' is a didactic poem in which Robert Gray warns the reader about the consequences of change. In the poem, Gray makes heavy use of allusion, symbolism and imagery, but also uses irony and personification to bring his warning to life.
Perhaps the most important technique used by Gray in 'Flames and dangling wire' to warn the reader of the consequences of change is imagery. The city is described as being 'driven like stakes into the ground', symbolising the merciless and violent imposition of humans on their world. This is ironic, as humans themselves are part of nature, yet are destroying it for their own ends. The imagery of the dump is used to symbolise the dystopic wasteland that society may one day become, a consumer society consuming itself. The people who fork through the trash symbolise that we may, one day pick at the remnants of our long lost culture, 'with an eternity in which to turn up some peculiar sensation'. All change has consequences.
Another way Gray warns his readers of the consequences of change is through the use of strong allusions. In his poem, Gray alludes to 'the raft of the Medusa', a painting by Gericault. 'The raft of the Medusa' portrays the dying survivors of a shipwreck, who have resorted to cannibalism as they drift on the merciless sea. The survivors are representitive of the human race, consuming itself, as it tosses on a sea of materialism. Gray also alludes to Charon, the 'demon with the long barge pole', the mythological boatman of the river Styx. The allusion to Charon represents the link between the dump and hell on earth. The human race cannot be saved, because it is already dead. Gray warns that the constant change to a more and more materialistic society will have dire consequences.
Perspective is a very important