Out of the Blue by Simon Armitage

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  • Extracts form Out of the Blue by Simon Armitage
    • Themes and Ideas
      • The poem shows how conflict isn't just confined to the battlefield and that terrorism intrudes on everyone's life.
      • The poem is a dramatic monologue and it invites the reader, who is already a witness to this event to see it from the point of the victim.
    • Background and Context
      • It is a poem that was commissioned for the 5th anniversary of the Twin Towers bombing in 2001.
      • The use of dramatic monologue allows the poet to explore the thoughts and feelings of a victim of conflict.
    • Structure
      • Different types of lines
        • For example all the lines in the final stanza are ended with a full stop and this suggests finality.
        • Enjambement
          • This creates a disorientating effect which suggests the enormity of the situation and also the dizzying height of the building.
    • Techniques
      • Caesuras
        • The depth is appaling.Apalling
          • This highlights the terror of the situation.
      • First Person and Continuous Tense
        • This used to give a pressing sense of urgency. The immediancy of the event is heightened by the insistent repetition of the present participles.
      • Repetition
        • In fact I am waving, waving
          • creates sad imagery of the final actions of this man.
          • Highlights the importance of the action and the desperation of the man, he needs to be noticed.
        • Watching, watching
          • the repetition of 'watching' emphasises the fact that rather than take action people watch it on their tv.
      • Rhetorical Question
        • Does anyone see a soul worth saving?
          • Suggests and questions his significance, or lack of it.Is this sentient being just another face in the crowd.
            • This is important because it questions our inhumanity and empathy for others.
      • Symbolism
        • A bird goes by.
          • The line stands out because it is so short.
          • Even in this extreme situation he notices the small everyday thimgs.
      • Sarcastic Understatement
        • a man shaking crumbs or pegging out washing?
          • The use of sarcastic understatement in the final question is treating this act as insignificance.
      • Emotive Language
        • Do you see me, my love
          • This is an adress to his loved one who he hopes is watching as he says his final goodbye.
    • Targeting A/A*
      • Does the poem succeed?
      • Does the poem accuse the reader of naivety?
    • Compares with...
      • The Right Word
        • Perpetrators of terrorism vs consequences
      • Bayonet Charge
        • First Person
        • Experience of conflict
      • Belfast Confetti
        • First Person
        • Civilian victim of terrorism
  • Background and Context
    • It is a poem that was commissioned for the 5th anniversary of the Twin Towers bombing in 2001.
    • The use of dramatic monologue allows the poet to explore the thoughts and feelings of a victim of conflict.
  • The bird is a symbol of freedom.
    • A bird goes by.
      • The line stands out because it is so short.
      • Even in this extreme situation he notices the small everyday thimgs.

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