Tissue by Imitiaz Dharker

  • Created by: randall04
  • Created on: 29-10-19 10:05
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  • Tissue by Imtiaz Dharker
    • form and structure
      • constructed in unrhymed, irregular quatrains. This form can be seen to represent the irregularity of life and the flimsy nature of the tissue paper the poem refers to.
      • The poem consists of ten stanzas. The first nine stanzas are each four lines long. The final stanza, however, is one line in length, drawing our attention to it. Separating out this line emphasises the connection between paper and skin, showing the significance of human life.
      • The poem lacks regular rhyme and its rhythm is unsteady, as if to mirror the fluttering of tissue paper. The poet uses enjambment, running meaning between lines and across stanza breaks. This adds to the flowing, delicate nature - both of paper and of the human lives the poet compares the tissue to.
        • enjambment lacks control and order undermining the power and control obtained by man
      • transparent is repeated various time possibly empathizing the fact that you have to be transparent to be a leader
    • quotations
      • the title can have a double meaning, it could be refering to tissue paper or human tissue what we are made up of
        • It could also suggest that the base of human existence is such a simplistic element as paper, meaning that we are all connected to each other regardless religion, career, sex, political views, implying that we need to dissolve the hate and discrimination enforced by our society.
      • Paper that lets the lightshine through, thisis what could alter things.
        • light is a metaphor for god and religion
        • It can also suggest the fragility of life. We record thoughts and feelings on paper that is easily destroyed and the writing becomes faint over time. However, there is a greater ‘light’ — that of the spirit — that shines and sanctifies frail human endeavour.
        • this is what could alter things=The poet is saying that paper — and one assumes the writing on it — has the power to effect change. Also, there is a greater force — maybe God or a spiritual ideal that motivates humans — that has the power to affect what we do and how we live.
      • the back of the Koran, where a handhas written in the names and histories,who was born to whom,
        • the koran evokes religous imagry conveying the power of god]
        • the koran is different for different people but what makes us similar is the names and histories recorded within it
        • this aids the interpretation that tissue is human
        • she focuses on the hand signifying that we are all similar, she may be attempting to put us back with our histories
      • Maps too. The sun shines throughtheir borderlines,
        • maps too- These literally and metaphorically show us the direction in which we should go.Furthermore, this indicates that humans need to control and constrain, the poem throughout uses contrasting themes of nature and human need to create order in life out of chaos. Yet, when the ‘sun shines through’ nature overcomes human constriction.This is a short, blunt fragment which reflects the fixed nature of maps and borders. It shows that maps and territories create divisions instead of freedom.
          • the sun shines through their border lines-If our society is transparent, we could remove all borders between ourselves as humans and become united as one. Maps are a symbol of mankind; they mark out natural barriers like mountains and rivers, but in doing so create borders that divide humans. The fact that the sun shines through the maps shows that nature overpowers mankind. Although we create things that unite us, humans aren’t ‘transparent’ and borders are developed in the process.The natural borders, the rivers and ‘mountain folds’, can represent the obstacles we have to face and overcome to be a truly transparent, ideal society.
      • find a way to trace a grand designwith living tissue, raise a structurenever meant to last,
        • The grand design is the blueprint to describe the way life is built. This could also be a reference to God’s design, as in Genesis 1:1. We are ‘traced with living tissue’, made in the ‘image of God’. Note the noun ‘design’ rhymes with ‘line’ in the previous stanza, to give coherence to the related ideas.
        • living tissue-The ‘grand design’ and its ‘living tissue’ are connected with smooth enjambment. The grand buildings, great plans have to be recorded on paper; the thin ‘tissue’ that opens the poem. But they also need ‘living tissue’, that is the flesh and skin and muscle that makes us human. Moreover it takes human sacrifice and pain to build these structures.
        • raise a structure never meant to last-This could be either the buildings or the plans. The phrase ‘never meant to last’ implies the mortality of human form (‘living tissue’). The enjambment after ‘structure’ relates to complexity and careful design, linked with ‘grand design’ and contrasted with the description, ‘never meant to last’.
      • turned into your skin.
        • This is implying that humans are as fragile as tissue or paper. It also implies that we too, the humans on this earth, have bodies made of tissue — skin, bone, flesh etc. But we also draw our plans, devise our lives with paper, which may be thin and fragile or powerful.Note also that the direct second person pronoun, ‘your’, means that the reader is being directly addressed. This emphasises that we’re all equal, like God’s ‘grand design’, especially since in the end none of us is ‘meant to last’.The final single line breaks the arrhythmic quatrains, reflecting life as whole; unpredictable and disorganised no matter how we try to impose order. It also suggests how sudden and unpredictable death is.
    • context
      • mtiaz Dharker is a contemporary poet who was born in Pakistan and grew up in Scotland. She has written five collections of poetry and often deals with themes of identity, the role of women in contemporary society and the search for meaning. She draws on her multi-cultural experience in her work.
      • She is also a film director and has scripted a number of documentaries in India, supporting work with women and children.
      • the poem is about the fragility of man and the power of paper/nature


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