English Literature Poem analysis

Carol Ann Duffy, Simon Armitage and Pre-1914 poems

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  • Created on: 19-05-10 14:38
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Duffy, Armitage and Pre-1914 Poems
Theme: Hate, bitterness, violence, sympathy.
Structure: Enjambment shows unstable persona.
Language Technique Example
Oxymoron "Beloved Sweetheart Bastard."
Harsh Alliteration "Beloved Sweetheart Bastard."
Metaphor "dark green pebbles for eyes"
"ropes on the back of my hands I
could strangle with"
Rhetorical question "Who did this to me?"
Bitter tone "Spinster. I stink and
Onomatopoeia "Bang." "cawing"
Violent, threatening language "Give me a male corpse for a
long slow honeymoon."
"I stabbed at a wedding cake."
Anne Hathaway
Theme: Love, Memories
Structure: Rhyming couplet at end of poem.
Language Technique Example
Alliteration "living laughing love"
Literacy terms "verb" "noun" "assonance"
Soft, joyful imagery "kisses" "dancing"

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Before you were mine
Themes: Parent-child relationships, memories, love
Structure: Four structured stanzas.
Language Technique Example
Vibrant imagery "polka-dot dress", "high-heeled
red shoes"
Glamorous icon "Marilyn."
Pronouns "Before you were mine"
Exclamation marks "Cha cha cha!"
Joyous language "That glamorous love lasts where
you sparkle and waltz and laugh"
Themes: Relationships, Trust
Structure: Four stanzas varying in length therefore is quite irregular
reflecting the idea in the poem that relationships can be awkward
and don't follow a set pattern.…read more

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Mother, any distance
Themes: Parent-child relationships, love
Structure: reflects son's feelings of increasing freedom
Language Technique Example
Alliteration "single span"
Metaphor "leaving up the stairs, the line
feeding out, unreeling years
between us. Anchor. Kite."
Ellipse "the last one-hundredth of an
Definite rhyming at end "an endless sky to fall or fly"
Rule of three "You come to help me measure
windows, pelmets, doors,"
Themes: Jealousy, bitterness
Structure: The poem consists of a single stanza of 24 lines.…read more

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Metaphor "I'm not playing ball-boy any
Themes: Murder
Structure: Enjambment and free-flow emphasises his nonchalant
attitude towards murder and insane persona.
Language Technique Example
Song references "blowin' in the wind"
Violent language "I let him have it"
Enjambment "I dropped it into third and leant
Personification "he liked the breeze to run its
fingers through his hair.…read more

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The Song of the Old Mother
Themes: Bitterness
Structure: Written in rhyming couplets
Language Technique Example
Repetition "scrub and back and sweep"
Imagery "the seed of the fire flicker and
Bitter tone "I must work because I am old,"
"And their day does over in
My Last Duchess
Themes: Murder
Structure: Ordered
Language Technique Example
Threatening language "The all the smiles stopped
together.…read more

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She thanked men, - good! but
Arrogant persona "thought a rarity, which Claus of
Innsbruck cast in bronze for
The Laboratory
Themes: Murder, jealousy, bitterness
Structure: twelve stanzas. Rhyming scheme highlights she doesn't
feel guilty as it's very controlled and clear.
Language Technique Example
Repetition "Which is the poison to poison
her, prithee?"
"While they laugh, laugh at me,"
"Where they are, what they do"
Violent language "Grind away, moisten and
mash-up thy paste.…read more

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