I Heard A Fly Buzz-when I Died, Death Be Not Proud And Starry Night

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Essay #2: Critically read the poems “I heard a fly buzz –when I died” by Emily Dickinson, “Death Be Not Proud” by John Donne and “Starry Night” by Anne Sexton (not in textbook), and consider the various views about death. Write a 500-750 word essay on this topic: • • • • • Your essay should be word processed, double spaced, and stapled. Type your name, the instructor's name, your class, and the date in the upper left corner of the first page, and give your essay a centered title (different from the title of the poems). Follow MLA format. Your essay should be written in a formal writing voice. Among other things, this means that you should avoid first-person references (the use of "I," "me," "my," etc.), so you should not use phrases such as "I think that," "I believe that," or "in my opinion”. Your essay should have at least 5 paragraphs (introduction, three body paragraphs and a conclusion). A one-sentence thesis statement should appear in the introduction of your essay, and the thesis statement usually appears as the last sentence of the introduction. Each body paragraph should begin with a topic sentence that clearly and specifically identifies the main point of the paragraph, and you should remain focused on developing only this main point in the rest of the paragraph. You should use specifics from the poems, including quotations, to help you support and develop the idea throughout the rest of the paragraph. • You will need to use quotations from the poems to help you support and develop your ideas, and every quotation should be integrated into one of your own sentences. In other words, you should make every quotation a part of one of your own sentences and you should not have any quotation standing by itself in your essay. In some cases, you could simply put ”the poet says “ (followed by a comma) before quotations to make the quotations part of your own sentences. • You should assume that your audience has already read the poems, so you should not just summarize them. Instead, focus on writing an analysis and interpretation of the views about death provided by these poets.
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The theme of death is common in poetry. Some of the poems which advance the theme
include Emily Dickinson’s “I heard a fly buzz-when I died,” John Donne’s “Death Be Not
Proud,” and Anne Sexton’s “Starry Night.” The poems present various views about death
through their respective mystical, hostile, and wistful approach to the theme.
In “I heard a fly buzz-when I died,” the deceased speaker views death as a spiritual
process which takes them to the next world. She reflects upon the moment of their death. At first,
she is prepared for her death. But for the buzzing fly, the room is still. The spiritual view of death
is seen in the second stanza where everyone awaits “For the last Onset-when the King/...

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