Vol. 3, Issue 2 (2018)
Poetic imagery in the poetry of Dylan Thomas
Author(s): Aastha Pratap, Pratibha Tyagi
Abstract: Dylan Thomas was a brilliant poet, playwright short story writer, Essayist, screen writer, Journalist and Novelist. His works are known for Musical quality of the language, comic or visionary scenes and sensual images. He is widely regarded as one of the 20th century's most influential lyrical poets and amongst the finest as such of all time. His acclaim is due to the force and vitality of his poetic imagery and celebration of natural beauty in his poetry that is uniquely brilliant and inspirational. His vivid and often fantastic imagery was a rejection of the trends in the 20th century poetics while his contemporaries gradually altered their writing to serious topical verse. Thomas devoted himself to his passionately felt emotions. Thomas, in many ways, was more in alignment with the Romantics than he was with the poets of his era. He was considered the Shelley of the 20th century as his poems were the perfect embodiments of 'new-romanticism' with their violent natural imagery, sexual and Christian symbolism and emotional subject matter expressed in a singing rhythmical verse. The intensity of any literary work largely depends on powerful imagination. It also depends on the effective execution of that very imagination in the pages of a literary work. Therefore, to visualize his/her imagination the poet/writer often employs various literary devices. The most effective and compelling of those is the use of imagery (a figure of speech). Imagery is used in literary works to refer to the ways the writers compose mental images in words. It signifies all the sensory perceptions used in a literary work, whether by literal description, allusion, simile or metaphor. Imagery is not limited to visual imagery; it also includes auditory (sound), tactile (touch) thermal (heat and cold), olfactory (smell), gustatory (taste) and kinesthetic sensation (movement). Imagery engages the reader's imagination through wonderful descriptions or illustrations that vividly portray the reality of a particular moment. A literary work with effective imagery gives the reader a clear mental picture of what is happening and enhance what the writer is trying to convey to the reader.