Bayonet Charge- Ted Hughes

  • Created by: lucyaa
  • Created on: 09-05-17 20:36
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  • Bayonet Charge- Ted Hughes
    • Background
      • about a nameless solider going over the top of the trenches
      • the solider becomes a weapon with the bayonet on the end of his rifle
      • Hughes was a former RAF service man
      • themes of countryside, human history, were influenced by his imagination
    • Structure
      • written in 3 stanzas where the length of lines varies a lot showing the quick + slow progress of the soldier
      • dashes are used in the 1st line straight away disrupting the flow
        • shows how soldier is waking up to what is happening and starting to think
      • 2nd stanza is in slow motion (lines broken in the middle)
      • 3rd stanza is a rush as he runs towards doom
    • Countryside imagery
      • "a yellow hare that rolled like a flame"
        • terrified hare represents solider with its "mouth wide"
      • "green hedge"
        • contrast, should be a peaceful image (could suggest gas)
      • "crawled in a threshing circle"
    • War language
      • "patriotic tear that had brimmed in his eye"
        • his patriotism is lost
      • "shot slashed furrows"
      • "dazzled with rifle fear"
      • "stumbling across a field"
      • "He plunged past with his bayonet"
    • Techniques
      • war personified blurs lines between weapon and man
        • "bullets making the belly out of the air"
      • Simile
        • de-humanises the solider as he becomes the weapon
          • "a rifle numb as a smashed arm"
            • doesn't feel when shooting + shows he's inexperienced
        • "sweating like monte iron from the centre of his heavy chest"
          • Juxtaposes patriotic fear as he attempts to overcome his fear
      • alliteration
        • "Terror's touchy dynamite"
          • Consonance-emphasis of T sounds like fighting (highlights fear + danger)
      • onomatopoeia
        • "Crackling air"
    • Conflict
      • the soldier questions why he is there
        • "King, honour, human dignity, etcetera"
        • rhetorical question reflects his contrasting thoughts
          • "Was he the hand pointing that second"
        • "his foot hung"
          • between running he stopped and froze in the moment
        • "dropped like luxuries"
          • reminds reader of what he's missing at home


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