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Monday, January 3, 2011

a fighter's lines by marzuki ali (analysis)

ASSALAMUALAIKUM...

hi everyone. again, thousands of apology from me. I've promised you to share my idea on this poem. Anyway, this poem is currently used by Secondary school's students in Malaysia in their English literature class substituting the ones used previously. so, for those who learn this poem and need to generate idea on the poem analysis or for those who just want to know more about this poem, you may want to take a look at this. My friend, Josphine and I prepared this back in Semester 2 of our university's studies (currently we are in semester 4).


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Introduction


A Fighter's Lines by Marzuki Ali


I am old and worn

and have lost all my strength

sufferings

and the history of the fight for independence

have forced sacrifices

that know no name

or life

from the wheelchair of the rest of my days

I, body and energy crushed

see and cannot do much

these times are too big a challenge

for the remnants of my crippled years

the net of deceit spread everywhere

disturbs me

In the name of justice

Wake up and form ranks sons of our ancestor

Be brave

And erect a wall of people

Stand up heirs of our freedom

I have no more voice

It is you now who should speak!

A Fighter’s Lines is a beautiful poem written by Marzuki Ali who was born in Terengganu, Malaysia. He has been involving in this poems writing arena since 1960’s up till today. He is keen on writing those poems pertaining to the wonders of his hometown and the growing environment engulfing him and most of them are focusing on patriotism. He is actively involves in Malaysian and Indonesian theater. What is more interesting about him is that there are numbers of his poems have been published by Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka, Kuala Lumpur. In this poem analysis, we will be discussing further on one of his poems, A Fighter’s Lines. Rohani Longuet translates this poem from Marzuki Ali’s original version. In this analysis, we will be touching on few literary aspects. This includes the literal meanings of the poem, the logics of him writing this poem, the themes and point of views. Apart from that, we will also be highlighting on few literary devices this poem contains. It includes the tones, the symbols and the repetitions (alliterations, assonances and consonances). At the end of the analysis, a conclusive statement will be proposed in regards with the contents and interpretations of the poem.

2.0 ANALYSIS OF POEM

Written by Marzuki Ali, this poem talks about the feeling of a retired soldier who had fought for the country independence. This poem is looking from the first person point of view whom is a retired soldier as the poem uses the pronoun I , as lies in the stanza:

I am old and worn

and have loss all my strength

sufferings

and the history of the fight for independence

have forced sacrifices

that know no name

or life

From this Stanza, we know that the persona once had become a soldier and he had suffered a lot to free the country from invaders. During that time, they fought with all of their will and as the consequences now he is wheelchair bound due to the loss of energy and he is now old enough to only be able to sit on the wheelchair while monologues. This can be proven in the Stanza 2:

from the wheelchair of the rest of my days

I, body and energy crushed

After years of independence, the persona sees that the people are trying to destroy themselves by engulfing into the world full of lies. He says that there is nothing much he can do as he cannot control people’s mind as how he once did holding guns to destroy invaders. This is shown in the Stanza 2,

see and cannot do much

these times are too big a challenge

for the remnants of my crippled years

the net of deceit spread everywhere

disturb me

Due to the spreading of lies, he now urges new generation to speak out their opinions and fight for their freedom. He tells us in order to fight for our freedom, first we have to be united, ‘erect a wall of people’ regardless of our races or religions and fight for the sake of our nation’s harmony. As lies in the Stanzas 3 and 4,

In the name of justice

Wake up and form ranks sons of our ancestors

Be brave

And erect a wall of people

Stand up heirs of our freedom

I have no more voice

It is you now who should speak!

Why does he write this poem? As most of countries nowadays are aiming to reach the highest level of developments, our country, Malaysia also do not want to miss it out. But, without we realize, we slowly losing our morality and our country slowly engulfing in a sea of lies. He stresses here that if we, as the younger generation cannot find the way to prohibit the dishonesties and lies, we are putting our country fate in a danger as this dishonesties can shake the stability of our country and the peace it possesses. That is why in the Stanza 4, he urges the younger generation to be united disregard of the races and religions to speak out their opinions. This is important as these lies able to distract the peace and harmony of our country and finally lead to fight.

Next, let us discuss about the setting. In this poem, there are two settings arranged. First is in an independent country. This is obviously shown by the line, ‘and the history of the fight for independence have forced sacrifices that know no name or life.’ The word ‘history’ connotes that the persona is reflecting the past he had. The second setting is an old man sitting on a wheelchair inside his abode. This can be proven from the Stanza 2 (Line 1), ‘from the wheelchair of the rest of my days’.

Let us now discuss about the theme of this poem. The important theme in this poem is patriotism. The persona’s experience of being a soldier and fought with the enemies and gone through hardships turned him to deeply love his country. But now he is old and disable and cannot do much to free his country from nowadays challenges. Even so because of his patriotism and he cannot bear to see the country sinks in the sea of lies, he urges the young to fight for it. He urges the younger generation to unite in spite of their differences and speak out the inequalities and dishonesties in the community so much so that the freedom retains.

Besides that, the persona voices out his hopes through various tones. In the Stanzas 1 and 2, the persona enhances the tone of frustration as he shares his disabilities and weariness of not being able to fight for the country anymore. They are proven by the line, ‘I am old and worn’. Not only that, the line ‘from the wheelchair of the rest of my days ‘, also symbolizes his disability which leads him to feel frustrated. He is worry of the deceits that spread everywhere nowadays as what he says in the line, ‘the net of deceit spread everywhere disturbs me’. His tone changes dramatically as in Stanzas 3 and 4, he goes from frustration to a fighting spirit where he eagerly urges the new generation to stand up and eradicate their fear of voicing out their opinions as stated in the line, ‘In the name of justice wake up and form ranks sons of our ancestor’ and ‘Be brave’. Besides that, he also stresses on the needs for the younger generation to be united and seek for their freedom as he clearly states in his lines, ‘And erect a wall of people’ and ‘Stand up heirs of our freedom’. In Stanza 4,, again he empathetically urges the younger generation to speak after him as now he is no longer strong to do so hence hopes for their voices to be heard as he stresses, ‘It is you now who should speak!’.

There are few symbols being highlighted in the poem. First is the ‘wheelchair’ that connotes the disability. Through this symbol, one manages to imagine the persona’s condition, the hardships he went through before for the sake of achieving the country’s independence. Even though he is now wheelchair bound, he still has the will and determination to trigger the younger generation from their long asleep on how essential it is to retain the independence achieved from the sacrifices paid by the old generation like him. Besides that, another symbol represents in the poem is ‘a wall of people’ which connotes people uniting. In this poem, it refers to a need for the younger generation to unite themselves regardless any races, skin colors or backgrounds to speak for themselves, prohibit from being influenced by the deceits being spread nowadays. It is also essential for the younger generation to erect a wall of people to maintain the independence achieved by the persona’s generation efforts.

Another element proposes in this poem is the initial alliteration where it applies in the Stanza 1 (Line 6), ‘that know no name’. It is also includes in the Stanza 4 (Line 1), ‘I have no more voice!’ The initial alliteration also occurs within words as in the Stanza 2,

for the remnants of my crippled years

the net of deceit spread everywhere

Besides that, there is also an assonance uses in this poem. The assonance occurs internally as in the Stanza 3,

And erect a wall of people

Stand up heirs of our freedom

The final literary device uses is metaphor. In this poem, one can see there are two examples of metaphor use. In the Stanza 2 (Line 6), the persona uses ‘the net of deceit’ where he voices out what kind of problem encounters by the younger generation nowadays. He means how the modern generation deceives each other and how the deceit being spread day by day and it obviously bothers him. The next metaphor applies is in the Stanza 3 (Line 4), ‘a wall of people’ where the persona feels that the people need to be united and concrete as a wall to encounter any problems interfered. Only through this way, the eternity of independence the persona’s generation fought for may be preserved for the upcoming generations.

3.0 Conclusive Statement

From the poem analysis, we have learned that in our country, Malaysia which full of variety of races, religions and beliefs, dishonesties and lies can be the viruses which in turn could destroy our unity and peace. That is why he urges us, a new generation to form a wall of unity regardless of our differences and stand together as a family to retain our freedom and peacefulness as a word saying, “together we one, divided we fall.” Secondly, from this poem we learned that to retain our country’s independence, we must be brave and bold to uphold justice. We must be brave to seek the truth and only then we can make a way to a better future. Thirdly is we must defend our independence after those hardships that our late warriors had been through as they sacrifice themselves to grant us the peace that we are able to enjoy now. With all of our efforts, we must work hard to retain it. Otherwise, all the lives that our ancestors had paid for this independence are not worth at all. To maintain them, the younger generation has to unite and fight for justice and avoid the inequalities in our nation. If we do not fight for this independence then how does our next generation going to survive? In today’s world, irresponsible people use internet amenities to spread rumors to ruin our country, but we as the citizen who are still bound to the principle of 1 Malaysia, shouldn’t believe this. This is because they are only taking an advantage from our weaknesses to ruin our unity. As for the country leader, they must act rationally to handle this matter so much so that justice can be retained.

12 comments:

  1. salam.. where can i get the full information of the poet.

    ReplyDelete
  2. wsalam. sorry for the late reply. actually, it is hard to get his information online. you could probably visit any library and find it there. or you can buy any reference book for secondary school's literature and they might have it in the book. good luck. :)

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  3. salam..., may i know this poet translate to B.M.?

    ReplyDelete
  4. wsalam... which one u mean?

    the poet does translate his works to BM or

    this poem is a translated version?

    :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. where can i get the opinion ? please (:

    ReplyDelete
  6. It is very helpful in my understanding of fighter's lines, btw thank you so much Effa :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. please answer this for me. Identify two phrases which indicate that person is weak :0

    ReplyDelete