A Deadly Song
As Odysseus was approaching the dreaded island of the sirens he is keen on protecting his men from the voices of the terrible beasts. The sirens were monsters that could lull any soul into coming upon their island by their beautiful song but only to devour that unfortunate person which is slightly ironic because signs of death were all around the sirens yet their song is too powerful. In the Homer’s epic poem the “Odyssey” and Margaret Atwood’s poem the “Siren Song” the sirens are described similarly and differently using tone, point of view and various poetic devices.
The tone of the “Odyssey” is rather ominous and also a little sad while in “Siren Song”. The tone is melancholy and is rings of sadness and boredom. The lines “our trim ship was speeding toward the siren’s island, driven by the brisk wind.” are rather dark because a brisk wind implies that the air was cold and coldness is associated with death. Also in the “Odyssey” there is a hint of sorrow when Odysseus could not satisfy his heart fully with the siren song, obviously for the better, “So they sent their ravishing voices out across the air and the heart inside me throbbed to listen longer”. In Atwood’s poem, the lines, “This song is a cry for help: Help me! Only you, only you can, you are unique as last.” Convey sadness for the siren who is portrayed as a involuntary prisoner on this island. Also in the “Siren Song” there is expressed boredom when the siren says, “Alas it is a boring song but it works every time”.
In the “Odyssey”, the poem is largely told in the first person point of view, from Odysseus’ point of view but in “Siren Song” the poem is told from the Siren’s point of view. In the “Odyssey”, Odysseus refers to himself as “I” and “me” signaling the first person point of view and for example, “Now with a sharp sword I sliced an ample wheel of beeswax down into pieces, kneaded them in my two strong hands and the wax soon grew soft, worked by my...