Life in Our Village
Life in Our Village is a poem written by Matei Markwei. It has three stanzas, but with no definite and fixed number of lines per each. It is a simple poem, an easy-to-read one in fact, and it tackles the issues of childhood innocence and love. The author used repetition to put emphasis on the message it wanted to bring to the audience. While it was shortly written, it had captured a number of people’s adoration with its simplicity. The distinction between boys and girls was clearly pointed out and the role of adults in the lives of children was significantly raised. Relatively, the major themes that were played in the poem were love, childhood innocence, and humanity’s weakness.
There are different kinds of love. There is the love you feel for someone special, who made a great impact in your life. There is also the love for things, which made you feel passionate and determined to achieve your goals. Most importantly, there is the love for friends and family, who always showed care and comfort to make you feel safe. In this poem, two of these three kinds of love where shown: young love and parents’ love. First, young love was actually in the last sentence of the last stanza. “Boys seek girls. Girls seek boys. And each to each sing songs of love.” This exhibits that young love is free and innocent. Also, it shows how much boys and girls of young ages are willing to trade anything for the love of love itself. On another note, the poem also depicted the love of a parent towards his or her child. The lines in the first stanzas’ literal meaning is that the girls and boys are prohibited to look at each other because it would seem wrong in the eyes of an elder. However, if we dig deeper into its meaning, these lines just show how much the elders are dedicated to taking care of their offspring. After all, they are young and still innocent of the real world. The whole poem actually speaks of elders barring boys and girls to interact with each other. Thus, if we objectively think about it, they are just protecting their children so they will not commit mistakes that they will regret in the end.
This leads us to the second theme, which is the innocence of a child. In this poem, the author clearly elaborated on what a child must do and not do in the presence of an adult. In the same manner, though, he pointed out such innocence’s flaws. That no matter how innocent a child is, there will come a time when he or she would want to explore the world. The lines of the poem clearly indicates that the children’s innocence were stained with curiosity and interest. Like what people always say, the more you tell someone not to do something, the more will they be willing to continue doing such. Hence, in this poem, curiosity killed their innocent minds through the established rule of not interacting with each other. Because of this rule, or belief so to say, the children were able to question the rationale behind such rule. They started questioning themselves why are they being prohibited. Whether such questions arose in their mind consciously or unconsciously, their thinking and feelings made them act the way they do whenever the adults are not around. In plain words, since children are learning every day, they learned to deviate from the elders’ expectations.
Now, this stained innocence brings us to the last issue which is humanity’s weakness. In the poem, the author even said that humans, indeed, are weak. The reason perhaps would be because the children gave in to their curiosity. And when they did, they broke the golden rule of not interacting with each other. This is obviously an indication that humans are frail and easily drawn when it comes to temptations. Humans are indeed fragile when things go out of hand. We are innately curious about almost everything. Even as a child, we always want to know about things because we yearn for learning. Hence, when we are being forbidden not to do or know something, we tend to be more interested and we ask ourselves why such is not allowed. Since we have this animal instincts of protecting ourselves, we deviate from society’s expectations and do the things that people say we must not.
It would seem that the entire poem wanted to depict these ideals – that no matter how much we abide by the rules, there will come a point in our life when we would want to get out of our comfort zone and explore things we have not yet tried before. This poem, on a particular note, exhibits the curiosity of a young mind to discover things that are left hidden in his or her eyes by the people who look after him or her, particularly in the aspect of romantic love.