Compare and contrast my papa's waltz and cats in the cradle

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Jonathan Valerio
Professor Storms
ENC 1101
5 December 2011
Compare and contrast the poems “My Papa's Waltz” and “Cats In The Cradle”.
“Cats In The Cradle” and “My Papa's Waltz” are differentstories and varied symbolism is used throughout them. They both speak about the relationship between a father and his son, and both have what is a very meaningful message. While “Cats In The Cradle “chronicles the story of a a boy growing up, watching and admiring his father who is always away working to provide for his family and his son, “My Papa's Waltz” is also about a hard working father andhow he comes home from work with a strong smell of whiskey on his breath. Analyzing both poem's you’ll find that “Cats In The Cradle” possesses a more powerful message than “My Papa's Waltz.
Withinboth stories we read about the fathers absence. The fathers are away from home working and this ultimately affects the lives of their sons. In Harry Chapin's “Cats In The Cradle” the child nevergot those experiences like spending time with his father or playing with him. It is mentioned also his father was not present when he took his first steps. This part indicates that the father was notthere to see his child during important moments. “My Papa's Waltz” is more about an intimate moment between a father and son, some might imagine a ritual in which the working class father comeshome at night to his family, after having glass of whiskey or two. For many, this poem is about an abusive father although to me this is not the case. The father and son are clearly enjoying theirnightly ritual romping and jumping in the kitchen while his Mother witnessed the scene in non agreement because of the mess they caused in her neatly organized kitchen.

Upon first reading the lyricsfor both pieces you may think that they are sad stories lacking joy because words that denote sadness and even some violent imagery are used throughout them both but specially in “In My Papa's Waltz....
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