English Literature: Storm on the Island

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  • Storm on the Island
    • We are prepared: we build our houses squat
      • emphatic opening line and caesura
        • the poem opens with a strong statement
        • emphasises the confidence and sense of security of the Islanders
      • the use of caesura reinforced this
        • it conveys the speaker's certainty that they are safely barricaded into their homes
    • You can listen to the thing you fear / Forgetting that it pummels your house too
      • danger imagery
    • Spits like a tame cat / Turned savage
      • simile
      • gives the impression that the storm is wild and uncontrollable
      • reminds readers that something that seems innocent can be deadly
    • We are bombarded by the empty air
      • military metaphor
      • 'bombarded' relates to air strikes
    • Strange, it is a huge nothing that we fear
      • irony
        • 'huge nothing that we fear' in the final line highlights how strange the situation is
        • despite huge physical preparation, ultimately it is only air
          • something that cannot be touched or seen that is frightening
      • juxtaposition
        • 'huge nothing' and 'rock' from the start of the poem seems even more menacing
          • human preparation is not sufficient protection
    • unpleasant and/or powerful experiences
      • The Prelude
      • Exposure
      • London
      • Remains
      • Bayonet Charge
    • power of nature vs power of humans
      • The Prelude
      • Exposure
      • Tissue
    • Seamus Heaney (1966)


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