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Analysis and comments on What Were They Like? by Denise Levertov

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Comment 18 of 118, added on September 19th, 2008 at 9:46 AM.

This poem shows the reality of what happens in war.. the loss of lives show
exactally why people get agitated by it. The most effective line for me is
the one that says 'Who knows? Its silent now' to me this indicates that an
entire country was wiped out. Although we all know this was not the case
but still many many thousands of lives were lost... its not fair and is a
very delicate subject for many who have lost loved ones due to war... more
people need to respect that rather than post unappropriate comments about
it. This world would be a much better place if people thought about what
they were saying before they say it...

sophie from United Kingdom
Comment 17 of 118, added on August 6th, 2008 at 10:05 AM.

This poem was written during US involvement in Vietnam as a protest against
that involvement. It is despiaring, as though the questions are being
asked about a people that no longer exists.

Is it only about Vietnam? No: it is about war, not about a particular
place, and the results of war. And as it shouws, no one is invulnerable or
immune from those results.

Joseph from United States
Comment 16 of 118, added on May 12th, 2008 at 6:31 AM.

this poem is a peaceful and delightful poem to read

amie from United Kingdom
Comment 15 of 118, added on April 2nd, 2008 at 4:05 AM.

this poem is wow a waste of time. dont read it, its pointless and
boring....it makes no sense & we don't live in vietnam so bovvered?!? we iz
wow carin bwt the war & dat buh really??? is the war our folt thow? nah m8.
inabit x

lauren & georgia from Antigua and Barbuda
Comment 14 of 118, added on March 2nd, 2008 at 3:53 AM.

"It is silent now" could be that no voices are now heard as they were
killed during the war.

we are doing this poem in Engish

x...amy...x from United Kingdom
Comment 13 of 118, added on December 1st, 2007 at 8:58 AM.

Please be aware that the poem as printed above contains errors. Example: it
is "after the children were killed," not "after THEIR children," and "stone
lanterns illumined," not "stone GARDENS." There are other errors as well.

Steve Barsky from United States
Comment 12 of 118, added on December 1st, 2007 at 8:52 AM.

This poem has been set to music by James Primosch. Our choir, Mendelssohn
Club of Philadelphia, commissioned Mr. Primosch's setting and has performed
it twice in concerts. It is a wonderful and sympathetic setting of the
text. Our site: www.mcchorus.org.

Steve Barsky from United States
Comment 11 of 118, added on August 11th, 2007 at 4:55 PM.

I personally love this poem. Me myself, I sort of see it as some kind of

"Did the people of vietnam use lanterns of stone?

Sir, their kind hearts turned to stone"

We used levels to establish the context...who would you call 'sir', then we
studied other aspects of levels, had a few experiments, roleplays, scenes,
still images. But all based on the poem.
Our group formed our piece on a kinda police interrogation and said the
poem as a police interrogation. It sounds amazing in that context.

If you investigate the poem in different ways, you really do get a real
sense of what the poems about and how it's set to create a real dismal

I love this poem and most of our drama class did too, legendary

Georgina Ainsworth from United Kingdom
Comment 10 of 118, added on April 24th, 2007 at 3:22 PM.

I feel that this poem expresses how the people of vietnamese lives chnaged
so dramatically after the war and i feel that its a very good poem.

paul davies from Ireland
Comment 9 of 118, added on April 5th, 2007 at 11:34 AM.

I thought this poem was written very well and adds the reader sympathy and
leaves them in the setting of the poem. Beautiful poem!

aloksa from United Kingdom

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Information about What Were They Like?

Poet: Denise Levertov
Poem: What Were They Like?
Added: Mar 17 2005
Viewed: 1068 times
Poem of the Day: Jan 19 2015

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