1 Tukazahn

The Century Quilt Poem Essay

Madison Martin

Wilson 6th period

English 3-AP

10 September 2013

Martin 2

The Century Quilt Analysis

Waniek's "The Century Quilt" not only illustrates the importance that her Meema's quilt had in her life but also represents her family, specifically her grandmother. Through many literary devices such as vivid imagery, symbolism, and structure, the author is able to create not only a reminiscent tone, but also depict how Waniek is hopeful for the future.

The poem's structure is a vital part when creating the complex meanings of the quilt. In the first Stanza, the writer's nostalgic tone brings forth the significance her grandmother's blanket had on her. Waniek writes that she fell "in love with Meema's Indian blanket," (1-2). With these lines, Waniek depicts how she discovered the significance a quilt could have on her life. "Now I have found a quilt" (13) Waniek writes in her second stanza. This line is necessary to create the present tense Waniek needs in order to be optimistic about the future.

In the third stanza, Waniek is not only reminiscent but also wishful that her experience with her new quilt will shadow her grandmother's.

Symbolism is a major technique that the author uses to get the meaning of the quilt across to the reader. In every stanza, Waniek likens the quilt to her family in order to describe how much the quilt reminded her of them. To her, her grandmother's quilt reminded her of her childhood. She describes how she remembered "play[ing] in its folds and be chieftains and princesses" (11-12). She uses these lines to demonstrate how the quilt represented her youthful and energetic days with her sister. In the second stanza she compares one of her new quilt's squares to "the yellowbrown of mama's cheeks" (17) to illustrate how the quilt...


The Century Quilt“The Century Quilt,” a poem by Marilyn Nelson Waniek uses literary devices in order to bring light to complex meanings. While analyzing the poem, I found literary devices like the use of imagery, hyperbole, sentimental tone, and structure. The quilt in the poem is recounted as more than just a piece of fabric. The “piece of fabric” has been through the whole expedition of life and has had responsibilities similar to that of a human being. Life’s purpose is to try and find your spiritual objective while living on this earth. Marilyn Nelson Waniek introduces us to a young girl who finds her spiritual connection through a quilt; literary techniques are used to help us better understand the complex meanings of the poem. I think a theme that is constantly being conveyed in this poem is the idea that our past makes us. The theme is heavily surrounded by the nature of ourselves comes from the stalk of our past. The theme of the poem constantly reminds us that if it wasn’t for our past, we wouldn’t be who we are today. The author uses many literary devices in the poem. One literary device used in the poem is imagery. Imagery is defined as “Imagery means to use figurative language to represent objects, actions and ideas in such a way that it appeals to our physical senses.” I believe the imagery used in the poem is tightly connected with the complex meaning of growing up. As we age day by day, the memories of you as a child slowly fades away. The sweet feeling you get as your mother caresses you to sleep or your father reading you a bed time story; the author uses imagery to reminisce about a part of our life we cannot relive. An example of

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