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Republic of the Philippines

Department of Education
Region IV – A CALABARZON
Division of Lipa City
LIPA CITY SCIENCE INTEGRATED NATIONAL SCIENCE HIGH SCHOOL

CRITIQUE AND ANALYSIS PAPER

THE SPOUSE BY LUIS G. DATO, A POEM

ENGLISH FOR ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL PURPOSES

JOYCE GWYNETH N. NAMIA


GRADE 11- FLEMING

JHONDRIEL C. LIM
INSTRUCTOR

AUGUST 2017
ANALYSIS AND CRITIQUE OF THE POEM THE SPOUSE BY LUIS G. DATO

Joyce Gwyneth N. Namia


joycenamia@yahoo.com.ph

I. Introduction

Poetry is one of the finest and most enigmatic forms of literature. Some poems are
easy to understand for they are written plainly and uses familiar language. But most poems
are comprised of long, complex sentences, a word order you barely recognize, or language
that is archaic. With this, difficulties arise. For it generally comes at the truth sideward
rather than head on, number of strategies are being followed to unravel the meaning the
poet has hidden within the lines.

With Luis G. Dato’s poem, The Spouse, this paper would analyze and assess the
entire piece in terms of the devices used and how it contributed to the said poem, and affect
the way it conversed with the readers.

II. Objectives

This critique and analysis paper aims:


1. To analyze and evaluate Luis G. Dato’s poem “The Spouse”;
2. To foster paraphrasing skills with the given poem;
3. To determine and enumerate the devices used in enhancing rhythm, meaning, and
mood of the poem; and
4. To discuss the effects, implications, and contributions of the elements present and
devices used on the poem.

A. Paraphrasing
A paraphrase is one’s own rendition of ideas or information without directly
quoting the original one. It is a legitimate way to borrow a certain knowledge from
someone; may it be written on the book, article, or even said on a speech.

B. Analysis and Critique through Art for Art’s Sake philosophy


1. Devices that enhance rhythm. Rhythm is the pattern of beats, stresses in spoken
or written language.
a. Repetition. It is the practice of repeating actions, phrases, or words to produce
a desired effect
b. Internal rhyme. It gives poetry a musical quality which appears within a single
line.
c. External rhyme. It gives poetry a musical quality which occurs at the ends of
two or more poetic lines.

2. Devices that enhance meaning. In poetry, the usage of sensory images, figurative
language, and sound devices are present to communicate ideas, tell a story, and
describe feelings. Thru these, the meaning would be easily conveyed and would
create vivid images.
a. Simile. It is an explicit comparison between two seemingly dissimilar things.
As signal word such as “like” or “as” indicates the comparison.
b. Imagery. It is the descriptive or figurative language used in literature to create
word pictures for the reader. These pictures, or images, are created by details of
sight, sound, taste, touch, smell, or movement.
c. Metaphor. It is a figure of speech in which one thing is spoken of as though it
were something else. The identification suggests a comparison between the two
things that are identified.

3. Devices that enhance mood. Also called as the atmosphere, mood is the feeling
created in the reader by a literary work or passage.
a. Hyperbole. It is a deliberate exaggeration or overstatement. Hyperboles are
often used for comic effect.
b. Onomatopoeia. It is the use of words that imitate sounds.
c. Personification. When writers attribute human powers and characteristics to
something that is not human, such as an object, an aspect of nature, or an idea,
they’re using personification.

III. Material and Methodology

A. Material
Written below are the materials used in making the critique and analysis paper of
the poem “The Spouse” by Luis G. Dato:
 Blogspot: The Spouse Analysis (2011)
 Christianster: A Textual Analysis on Luis G. Dato’s ‘The Spouse’ : A Biblical
Approach (2008)
 Blogspot: Autobiography – Luis G. Dato in Profile (2011)
 Purdue OWL: MLA Formatting and Style Guide (2016)
 Purdue OWL: Paraphrase: Write It in Your Own Words (2016)
 Prentice Hall: Literature; Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes (The American
Experience 2000)
B. Methodology

As a performance task in English for Academic and Professional Purposes (EAPP),


each student was given a poem that will serve as the pivotal point of the critique and
analysis paper that they are going to make.

For the poem “The Spouse” written by Luis G. Dato, different aspects were
evaluated. Before assessing the entire piece, a paraphrased version of the poem was
made in order to develop one’s paraphrasing skills. Devices that enhance rhythm,
mood, and meaning were determined, and different examples were given for each
device. The effects, implications, and contribution of the said devices towards the
meaning and aesthetic value of the poem was comprehensively discussed.

Through reading between and beyond the lines, the hidden message, the purpose of
the poem, and what the poet really means was interpreted and vividly understood.

IV. Results and Discussions

A. Paraphrased Poem

ORIGINAL POEM PARAPHRASED POEM

THE SPOUSE THE SPOUSE

Rose in her hand, and moist eyes I


young with weeping, Holding a rose, crying because she’s sad,
She stands upon the threshold On the verge of her house, she stands,
of her house, The awaken love due to fragrance,
Fragrant with scent that wakens To her husband who plows, she glanced.
love from sleeping,
She looks far down to where II
her husband plows. Her hair in disarray,
She’s struggling in the way
Her hair disheveled in the What man and woman can make
night of passion, From grief or rage
Her warm limbs humid with
the sacred strife, III
What may she know but man Does not care what the future holds,
and woman fashion Beyond the love, she finds no worlds,
Out of the clay of wrath On the field she looks upon,
and sorrow—Life? Wondering where her mind, motion,
time and space had gone.
She holds no joys beyond
the day’s tomorrow, III
She finds no worlds beyond How melancholy the eyes are,
her love’s embrace; How obscure a lonely love is,
She looks upon the Form Seeking is a creature beside the creek,
behind the furrow, The secret answer was there since.
Who is her Mind, her Motion,
Time and Space.

O somber mystery of eyes unspeaking,


O dark enigma of Life’s love forlorn;
The Sphinx beside the river
smiles with seeking,
The secret answer since the
world was born.

source: Forest Juvie. “A Textual Analysis on Luis


Dato’s ‘The Spouse’: A Biblical Approach. 2008.

Shown on the poem, The Spouse, is the role of the women on the society before the
Philippines had been set free. Women were not given the chance to do what they want.
Rather, they had to stay inside their house, and let their husbands do the work. Based on
the poem, it can be concluded that the woman is not satisfied with her life. She cannot feel
the love from her husband because the moment that she wakes up, her husband is already
plowing the fields and does household chores. She is seeking for the attention and love that
she deserves to have. She’s waiting for the time for everything to change and go to its
rightful place.

The poem depicts a social concern during the years back then. This gives awareness
to all the people that women deserve to be loved. Though they try to deny it, within them
are the pieces torn and torn, until they become completely broken.

V. Analysis and Critique through Art for Art’s Sake philosophy


Poetry is one of the three major types of literature. Poems are often divided into lines
and stanzas and often employ regular rhythmical patterns, or meters. Most poems make
use of concise, melodic, and emotionally-charged language. Many also make use of
imagery, figurative language, and other special devices which help to express ideas in vivid
and imaginative ways.

A. Devices to enhance rhythm


Rhythm is the pattern of beats, stresses in spoken or written language. Below
are the different maneuvers which help in enriching the rhythm of the poem:

1. Repetition
Repetition is the practice of repeating actions, phrases, or words to
produce a desired effect which can make an oral tale more memorable and
create drama and heighten suspense. It creates both rhythm and drama,
which captivates your audience. Rather than repeating just any word or
phrase, images or statements that communicate the main idea are also being
repeated.

Examples:
Within the poem, the word ‘lonely’ had been used numerous times
indirectly. This gives more drama to the poem and it can be concluded that
the person is suffering from grief.

Her warm limbs humid with


the sacred strife

Out of the clay of wrath


and sorrow—Life?

She holds no joys beyond


the day’s tomorrow,

O somber mystery of eyes unspeaking,

O dark enigma of Life’s love forlorn;

2. Internal rhyme
Rhyme, which gives poetry a musical quality, is the repetition of sounds
in the accented syllables of two or more words appearing close to each
other. Poets use rhyme in different ways. Internal rhyme appears within a
single line.
Examples:

She holds no joys beyond


the day’s tomorrow,
She finds no worlds beyond
her love’s embrace;

The Sphinx beside the river


smiles with seeking,
The secret answer since the
world was born.

3. External rhyming
Rhyme, which gives poetry a musical quality, is the repetition of sounds
in the accented syllables of two or more words appearing close to each
other. Poets use rhyme in different ways. End rhymes occur at the ends of
two or more poetic lines.

Examples:
The Spouse has a rhyme scheme of a-b-a-b, wherein the first line is
rhyming with the third line, and the second line to the fourth line. Every
stanza follows this scheme.

Rose in her hand, and moist


eyes young with weeping, (a)
She stands upon the threshold
of her house, (b)
Fragrant with scent that
wakens love from sleeping, (a)
She looks far down to
where her husband plows. (b)

Her hair disheveled in the


night of passion, (a)
Her warm limbs humid with
the sacred strife, (b)
What may she know but man
and woman fashion (a)
Out of the clay of wrath
(b)
and sorrow—Life?

She holds no joys beyond


the day’s tomorrow, (a)
She finds no worlds beyond
her love’s embrace; (b)
She looks upon the Form
behind the furrow, (a)
Who is her Mind, her Motion,
(b)
Time and Space.

O somber mystery of eyes


unspeaking, (a)
O dark enigma of Life’s love
forlorn; (b)
The Sphinx beside the river
smiles with seeking, (a)
The secret answer since the
world was born. (b)

B. Devices that enhance meaning


In poetry, the usage of sensory images, figurative language, and sound devices
are present to communicate ideas, tell a story, and describe feelings. Thru these, the
meaning would be easily conveyed and would create vivid images. Below are the
different maneuvers which help in enriching the meaning of the poem:

1. Simile
A simile is an explicit comparison between two seemingly dissimilar
things. As signal word such as “like” or “as” indicates the comparison. Like
poetry itself, similes enable us to see the world in startling new ways.

No similes are used on the entire poem of The Spouse.

2. Imagery
Imagery is the descriptive or figurative language used in literature to
create word pictures for the reader. These pictures, or images, are created
by details of sight, sound, taste, touch, smell, or movement.
Examples:
Imagery had been used several times in the entire piece of The
Spouse. These are created by sense of sight, sound, taste, touch, smell, or
movement.

Rose in her hand, and moist eyes


young with weeping,

Fragrant with scent that wakens


love from sleeping,

Her hair disheveled in the


night of passion,

Her warm limbs humid with


the sacred strife,

3. Metaphor
A metaphor is a figure of speech in which one thing is spoken of as
though it were something else. The identification suggests a comparison
between the two things that are identified. Although metaphors are often
brief, they may also be elaborate, lengthy comparisons. Metaphors are used
to make writing, especially poetry, more vivid, imaginative, and
meaningful.

No metaphors are used within the entire piece of The Spouse.

C. Devices that enhance mood


Also called as the atmosphere, mood is the feeling created in the reader by a
literary work or passage.

1. Hyperbole
A hyperbole is a deliberate exaggeration or overstatement. Hyperboles
are often used for comic effect.

Examples:

Fragrant with scent that wakens


love from sleeping,
2. Onomatopoeia
Onomatopoeia is the use of words that imitate sounds.

No onomatopoeias are used within the entire piece of The Spouse.

3. Personification
Personification is the attribution of human powers or qualities to
something that is not human, such as an inanimate object, an aspect of
nature, or an abstract idea. For centuries, writers have used personification
to satisfy a desire to understand the world in human terms.

Examples:

Fragrant with scent that wakens


love from sleeping,

O somber mystery of eyes unspeaking

VI. Conclusions and Recommendations


The Spouse, a poem by Luis G. Dato, encompasses a vast sea of language. It is one of
those very rich, musical, and mysterious form of poetry in the Philippines. With the
conducted analysis and assessment of the entire piece, written below are the formulated
conclusions and recommendations:

A. Conclusions
1. Luis G. Dato’s The Spouse consists of different poetic devices which make the entire
piece more significant and eloquent.
2. Different maneuvers were present within the poem which enhanced the rhythm,
mood and meaning of the piece.
3. Paraphrasing is a valuable skill for the mental process required for successful
paraphrasing helps you to grasp the full meaning of the original.

B. Recommendation
 The historical context should have been more emphasized – the social, political,
economic, and literary environment in which the poem was written in order to grasp
its deeper meaning.
References

 Russell, Tony, et al. “MLA Formatting and Style Guide.” The Purdue OWL. Purdue U
Writing Lab, 2 Aug. 2016.

 Graham, Don. Mora, Pat. Ellis, Linda. Gerla, Jacqueline. Caroll, Joyce. Wilson, Edward.
Lederer, Richard. Guadarrama, Argelia. Leeman, Peggy. Chadwick-Joshua, Jocelyn.
“Literature: Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes. The American Experience.” Prentice Hall.
2000. Pearson Education, Inc., Upper Saddle River, New Jersey.

 Forest, Juvie. “A Textual Analysis on Luis Dato’s ‘The Spouse’: A Biblical Approach.”
2008.
http://www.christianster.com/ctan/html/showsharing.php?authid=119299&m=4&
y=2008&d=11

 Dato-Talla, Stephen Cenon. “Luis G. Dato In Profile.” 2011.


http://luisgdato.blogspot.com/2011/06/blog-post.html

 Brizee, Allen. Driscoll, Dana Lynn. “Paraphrase: Write It in Your Own Words.” The
Purdue OWL. Purdue U Writing Lab, 2 Aug. 2016.

Appendices

Author’s Profile
Luis Guevarra Dato was born in Baao, Camarines Sur on the 4th of July, 1906 to
Eugenio Dato and Barbara Guevarra. At the age of 16, he wrote his first poem in 1922. His
first published poem appeared in the Naga Tribune in 1922, published in Naga, Camarines
Sur. Dato’s other poems were published in different publications in the Bicol Region.

Dato was the one who wrote the longest poem in English written by a Filipino, “The
Life of Christ.” He also wrote the longest sonnet sequence in the Philippines numbering
nearly 200 sonnets. He was the first one to translate Rizal’s “Mi Ultimo Adios.”

When asked “Is being a poet born or honed?”, Dato answered, “Read poetry, the best
in world literature, especially English, European, South American and Asian poetry.
Imitate the way they think; the way they write. Also, fall in love. Look around at our girls
who, I think, are among the loveliest in the world. Break your heart with the pain, the
anguish of unrequited love. Indulge in self-pity, if it cannot help. But sublimate your
frustrations. You are then in condition to write poetry, poetry from the depths of the soul.
ORIGINAL POEM PARAPHRASED POEM
THE SPOUSE THE SPOUSE

Rose in her hand, and moist eyes She is holding a rose in her hand while her
young with weeping, eyes are still wet with tears.
She stands upon the threshold She is standing in the doorway of her
of her house, house
Fragrant with scent that wakens that has fragrance/aroma that awakens the
love from sleeping, significant other from sleeping
She looks far down to where She looks beyond where her husband
her husband plows. ploughs (the farm, the meadow)

Her hair disheveled in the Her hair is messed-up because of the


night of passion, romantic night
Her warm limbs humid with Her limbs are still tender because of the
sacred fight
the sacred strife,
She knows as the custom between man
What may she know but man
and woman
and woman fashion
Out of the anger and sadness, life sprang.
Out of the clay of wrath
and sorrow—Life?
She holds no happiness in the future
She holds no joys beyond
the day’s tomorrow, She finds no place to live but just together
She finds no worlds beyond with her husband
her love’s embrace; She looks beyond the surface and sees her
She looks upon the Form husband in her thoughts, her movements,
behind the furrow, her time, her space
Who is her Mind, her Motion,
Time and Space. Sadness can be seen in the eyes
Life’s love is mysterious and sad
O somber mystery of eyes unspeaking, The sphinx beside the river smiles but is
O dark enigma of Life’s love forlorn; searching for something
The Sphinx beside the river The secret answer is already present since
smiles with seeking, the world began
The secret answer since the
world was born.

source: Forest Juvie. “A Textual Analysis on Luis


Dato’s ‘The Spouse’: A Biblical Approach. 2008.
I
Holding a rose, crying because she’s sad,
On the verge of her house, she stands,
The awaken love due to fragrance,
To her husband who plows, she glanced.

II
Her hair in disarray,
She’s struggling in the way
What man and woman can make
From grief or rage

III
Does not care what the future holds,
Beyond the love, she finds no worlds,
On the field she looks upon,
Wondering where her mind, motion,
time and space had gone.

III
How melancholy the eyes are,
How obscure a lonely love is,
Seeking is a creature beside the creek,
The secret answer was there since.

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