Analysis of ‘A Word to Husbands’ by Ogden Nash

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A Word to Husbands by Ogden Nash is a short and funny poem but it consists of a very serious message. Nash clearly understands and explains the problem that most of the unsuccessful marriages face today; unnecessary argument.

Analysis of ‘A Word to Husbands’ by Ogden Nash

According to Nash, “Whenever you’re wrong, admit it; whenever you’re right, shut up.” These two lines if seriously taken and abided by married couples, will obviously free them from all their worries and a peaceful and happy life will follow as a result. However, the ego is what exists in most of the couples today.

One tends to hide their faults even though they are wrong and do not accept their own faults. Accepting the mistake does not only lightens the heart but also acts like a soothing agent to a very intense argument.

Not accepting the fault can prove vital in a relationship over a longer period since it is something, which stays on. Just winning an argument is meaningless once you win the heart of a person. In fact, there are some cases where you can only win if you lose. Winning every argument is very much harmful especially if it involves an argument. This urge of winning every argument is the main reason why today even if an individual gets married twice or thrice he or she is not happy and satisfied with the partner. On the other hand, a couple can remain in love with each other exactly the way they did at the beginning of their relationship.

Nash clearly states that to keep the love in the loving cup, it is essential to accept and admit when one goes wrong and keep silent when one is right. If both the husband and wife keep this simple formula in mind, the love will remain forever. Even if any one of the husband or wife follows this idea, the marriage is bound to be successful and if no one neither the husband nor the wife follows the idea; a rough and unhappy marriage is sure to bring catastrophe.

Speech is silver, silence is golden- this saying is particularly true in case of marriages because unnecessary arguments will only result in increasing the tension between a couple and even the kids and other members of the family. Silence is the key and the secret to a happy marriage.


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Life, in fact peculiarly married and family life can be happy and blissful if patience and silence are followed on a regular basis. But people today are not only are busy and occupied in their life but they forget that they only get a handful of moments to spend with the people they love; if those moments are also spent arguing, a beautiful life is impossible. To fill the cup of your life with love and happiness accepting mistakes is essential.

A Word to Husbands’ by Ogden Nash Tone

In this poem, a word to husbands, Ogden Nash depicts the relationship between husband and wife in an interesting and humorous way. He points out that silence is often the best policy when arguing with your wife. Nash also tries to tell us that it takes two to quarrel, but with only one person, it cannot become an argument and in a very short time, things are bound to become normal.

The main message is for both husbands and wives: Marriage is a sacred thing when married husbands and wives ought to understand each other. Having arguments with each other is bound to happen in a marriage, and these are little things that should not be taken that seriously. Instead of yelling at each other, maybe trying to find different solutions would come with results that are more positive. In the poem, Ogden Nash used a clever and brief approach when writing the poem. Although the poem does not have a rhyming scheme and is quite short, with only one stanza, the poem is succinct and hits the nail right on its head. This poem is a quatrain.

Nash enjoyed a big share of audiences of this century, attracting readers from all occupations. He did that with his insightful, satirical view of human nature and human foibles. His biting wit was tempered by humor and sensitivity, enabling him to tread lightly over touchy subjects, including the behavior of other people’s children, social affectations, and illness. Nash’s unique style is often characterized by his willful disregard for grammatical and spelling rules. Nash often  deliberately miss spelled words to force a rhyme, such as spelling diapers “diopes” to rhyme with “calliopes.”

Many of Nash’s poems have been quoted and used so widely that they have reached near-proverbial status. “Candy / Is dandy, / But liquor / Is quicker,” and “If called by a panther, / Don’t anther” are two Nash poems that are so familiar to the reader that they are most of the times attributed to “Anonymous.” While the unconventional nature of his verse has denied him the status of a “serious” poet, Nash remains one of the most read and quoted poets of this century.

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