At the beginning of the poem, it is evident that the poet, Bishop, describes the fish will a lot of coldness. This creates a powerful image to the reader as she describes the fish being “Battered and venerable And homely” (Bishop 8, 9). This clearly displays the sad state of the fish, more so considering that the fish is prone to many adverse issues. The fish has to undergo a lot of humiliation in the hands of man proving that the fish has no rights.
The fish can fished by man, through pollution, the fishes die, the fish has also other predators besides man, hence making the fish appear like a bad creature. However, despite the sad state of the fish, the poet is sympathetic to the fish’s situation since it succumbs from many unfavorable conditions at the hands of its predators as revealed in the subsequent lines. Directly in the next sentences in the poem, Bishop describes the fish in a very sympathetic manner, as she notes about the image of the fish to resemble household goods, “Here and there. His brown skin hung in strips Like ancient wallpaper, And its pattern of darker brown Was like wallpaper:” (9-13). The wallpaper brings about the image of the reader personal life as the blown roses display age of the fish, which requires the fish to be sympathized with.
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