Charles Lamb “Thoughtless Cruelty”

The majority of individuals, at some point of their lives, have tortured inferior insects whether it be pulling the wings off a fly or crushing an ant. In the poem “Senseless Ruthlessness” by Charles Lamb the reader can see that the author is indeed upset about such a thing. The author uses the poetic gadgets such as diction, rhyme, and detail to describe his mindset toward those who perform such “Thoughtless Ruthlessness”.

The author initially directs his attention to “Robert” that has “kill ‘d that fly”.

The author then says the man was “devoid Of idea and sense” to have killed the fly. Here, the author is indicating that “Robert” must have been dumb for eliminating the innocent creature. The author goes on speaking about natural death as a bird “devours” it or a “cold blast in the night” will take its life. By describing the natural reasons for the pest’s death, Lamb sympathizes for the animal since of its unnatural death.

Lamb continues talking about that discomfort exists in even “The biggest being”, and even the “smallest ones possess” the feeling of death and discomfort experienced in the past. The author happens with more information in the piece about the unrefined humor in the animal’s terrible death.

Lamb explains, “The life you’ve required to supply, You could refrain from doing it” that the life “Robert” has taken can not be brought back, no matter how hard he tries. The author attempts to make “Robert” feel guilty by enlightening him, “A thing which no other way you annoy ‘d – You’ll one day rue it”, recommending that one day he will recognize his ruthlessness and morn the death of the fly.

“The bird but seeks his correct food … May just take [its life]. Here Lamb enters into more information about the natural death the fly may have experienced. “A life by Nature made so short, Less factor is that you for sport Ought to much shorter make it.” Lamb once again tries to weigh more regret upon “Robert”. “Although their frame and structure less Escape our seeing,” they still experience pain and its scaries.

Though the rhyme scheme of AAAB, Charles Lamb starts to use the poetic device of rhyme to also express his attitude. In the first stanza, he talks about how “Robert, killed that “fly”, but not matter how hard he may “try” to “supply” the life he has taken, he could never “do it”. In the second stanza Lamb writes that “Robert” must have been “devoid” of thinking to have “destroy’d” the fly that he never “annoy’d”, and will one day “rue it”, expressing negativity by sympathizing for the innocent creature. The author then goes into the natural death by illustrating the bird seeking its “food”, that fate whose power “endu’d” the fly thinks the time is “good” will take “it”. Finally, the author fully expresses himself when he explains the pain “The greatest being” can have with its “flesh” that even the fly may “possess”, small and structure “less” may escape our “seeing”.

All in all, the author uses many poetic devices such as diction, detail, and rhyme to express his attitude toward, what seems tragic to the author, event. Even the title “Thoughtless Cruelty” expresses the authors feelings. Things may be different now, when you see a fly, pulling the wings off a fly may not seem the same.

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