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Player Piano

My stick fingers click with a snicker

And, chuckling, they knuckle the keys;

Light footed, my steel feelers flicker

And pluck from these keys melodies.

My paper can caper; abandon

Is broadcast by dint of my din,

And no man or band has a hand in

The tones I turn on from within.

At times I'm a jumble of rumbles,

At others I'm light like the moon,

But never my numb plunker fumbles,

Misstrums me, or tries a new tune.

-John Updike-

Review of the Poem :Player Piano by John Updike

In 'Player Piano' John Updike used personification and the personification of this poem is taking a unhuman piano and making it like a real person using diction to communicate his ideas . He effectively allows the reader to explore 'player piano's thoughts. He starts off the poem with assonance which is refrain of vowel sounds to create internal rhyming within phrases or sentences, and together with alliteration and consonance serves as one of the building blocks of verse.

The 'the stick' 'click' and 'snicker' has ick sounds which can be suggesting us the piano and it's sharp sounds.

Second line 'chucking' 'knuckle' and 'key' all have big 'k' sound that shows itself.

At the last stanza there is consonance (Consonance is a stylistic device, most commonly used in poetry and songs, characterized by the repetition of the same consonant two or more times in short succession) 'these' 'keys' and'melodies' .The repeat of 's' sound in these three consecutive words makes a rhythm to this poem like piano makes.

Next stanza has a rhyme again reminding us piano and melodies ; 'My paper can caper' . This simple line is not only a rhymingly important it's also says us his paper can leap and jump like a child which shows us an example of personification. In line three of stanza two there is 'no man or band hasa hand in' which again reminds us this piano is not played by anyone it is played by itself and no other person touches it while it plays.

Stanza three on compare to first two stanza's there are more deep meaningful things such as jumble of rumbling sounds and a sound as a light cheerful as the moon in the sky seems to use light in another mean such as bright as a light or sof as in sound he uses words which has more then one meaning to enrich the image of poem. 'Never' at third line sugessts how player piano never makes any mistakes never 'misstrums' itself and also it can not play anything other then what it was programmed to.

Player piano is a very good example of both 'personification' and sounds in a poem using syntax and diction helps to make a poem understand better . Poem makes a great job to make us understand a life of a piano , written like the piano is speaking with giving sounds and diction importance in poem.

  


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