English Poetry - Literary Heritage

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this poem is talking about an injured soldier (who may be dead). The poem is set in France during WWI. The poet is questioning the point of life if it can be taken away so easily

FORM - uses half rhyme making the poem seem casual and conversational

STRUCTURE - each stanza begins with an imperative. starting out practical and become philosophical. (Begins questioning if its worthwhile)

TENSES - Uses past and present to contrast between the soldiers when he was alive/uninjured and afterwards

LANGUAGE - nature is personified as powerful but helpless. language becomes philosophical and biblical as the poet reflects on death. Direct address is used in the poem which gets the reader more involved with the poem and creates strong emotions. it also makes the reader questions what the poet is questioning - what is the point of life? 

the poem is sympathetic to a soldier and uses kind a sympathetic language, as well as the poet showing their own feelings about the bitter waste of life caused by war

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The Charge of the Light Brigade

This poem is based on a true incident from the Crimean war between British and Russian troops.a misunderstanding meant the British were order to charge into a valley where they were surrounded by gun armed Russians - whereas they only had swords. many of them were killed

FORM- narrated in third person making it like a story. regular rhythm creates the pace of the battle

STRUCTURE - poem is in chronological order with some lines repeated with subtle differences to keep the focus on the story and the soldiers

REPETITION - repetition creates a sense of inevitable/impending doom. and repetition of numbers emphasised chaos and how many people were actually involved

LANGUAGE - powerful verbs to emphasise violence and the poet respects the soldiers to emphasise their bravery in the battle

the poet uses main themes of admiration of the soldiers bravery, disbelief of the stupidity of the commander and the blind bravery of soldiers, and horror of the violence of the battle

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Futility - Quotes

"Snow" // "Now" - The eye rhyme gives a false sense of security and suggests something is wrong. 

"Half Sown" suggests he wasn't always a soldier makes his death seem less worthwhile, also half sown makes it unfinished, could be a metaphor for how his life is unfinished

"Sunbeams" - The sun is personified as a friend. it is powerful and brings life to earth (Plants) but can't wake 'him' (Unknown soldier could represent any soldier in war)

"Futility" means pointless to links to the theme of the poem - war is pointless and so is life and death

"Move him" suggests he cant move - why cant he move himself? (Injury, death)

"Woke" - links line 4 & 9. nothing can wake him now hinting he's dead or injured

"So dear Achieved" - makes the human life sound precious, creating strong emotions. its hard to make life but so easy to take it away

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The Charge of the Light Brigade - Quotes

"Half a League" - creates fast pace in the battle, sound represents horses hooves

"Not to reason Why" - shows how soldiers have no choice but to do what their told, shows bravery of soldiers. the deaths were not their fault. shows poets view on soldiers. also shows how they are not there to question things even if they are obviously the wrong thing to do

"Cannon (x6)" - emphasis of huge numbers of cannons. also changing the narrative, going from in front to behind. also shown with jaws of death (Out of, into)

"[numbered stanzas]" - shows the journey they went on and emphasised the differences in the stanzas representing key stages of the horrific battle

"Jaws of death" metaphor for the valley being inevitable of their deaths, valley has only one purpose being for their deaths. valley emphasises a feeling of no escape. also reference to biblical verse making it solemn and significant

"Not tho' soldier knew" - shows how none of them knew it was a mistake but nonetheless they continued from bravery. shows how the poet respects the, for this

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Come on, Come back

The poem (Set in the future) is a out a female soldier sitting on the ground and she has just returned from a battle at Austerlitz. she is confused and has lost her memory, she is so distressed she strips of and jumps into the lake and dies. an enemy soldier comes along and waits for her to come back but doesn't know she's dead. her name is Vaudeve

FORM - lengths of the lines switch between short and long, which replicates the confusion and unpredictability of Vaudeve, we also share her confusion through the random mixture of half rhyme, eye rhyme and full rhyme. 

STRUCTURE - events are told in chronological order but the end line links back to the beggining of the title at the start, creating a circular effect suggesting that war is timeless

REPETITION - repeating the title song reminds the reader of all the soldiers who have been lost, in the past and future - not just Vaudeve. key words also repeated (Death, Sadness)

LANGUAGE - strong descriptive language creates an eerie atmosphere in the poem

the poem is impersonal making us more detached (confusion?) its also ironic that Vaudeve and her enemy have the same favourite song. poem has mystery like moonlight.

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Bayonet Charge

the poem describes a soldiers experience in a violent battle as he desperately tries to avoid being shot. His main emotions and motivation is now coming from fear rather than patriotic feeling he had before the violence began.

FORM - the poem uses a lot of enjambment creating a haphazard effect representing the soldiers urgency, desperation's and confused thoughts as he stumbles forwards

STRUCTURE - the poem starts right in the middle of the action and covers the movements over a short space of time. middle stanza represents a pause as he rethinks what is happening, final stanza is his panicked movement as he runs for safety

LANGUAGE - the poet uses the pronoun 'He' keeping the soldier anonymous so it could represent any soldier. also uses figurative language to emphasise horror and pain. and shocking imagery to bring home the visual feelings in war helping to convey the fear of the soldier in war.

the poem challenged patriotism a shows the desperate terror in battle, and that he is eventually driven by fear. also showing confusion from the gunfire and starts questioning why he's there as his patriotism beings to fade away and he thinks about himself.

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Come on, Come back - Quotes

"Left by the ebbign tide" when the tide goes out it leaves seaweed ect.. behind, and this is a metaphor for how she is washed up like nothing. shows importance of memory

"Memory is dead" - Dual meaning between the memory of her life and her own memory

"Girl soldier" - Girl is young and innocent which contrasts with connotations of a soldier

"Adorable Lake" juxtaposition. the river sound appealing and calm. this could show how vaudeve is feeling. she is so confused she thinks jumping into the lake is a good idea

"Rutted meadow.. damp and firm" - contrast could show how she is undure of where she is or where she's going. also the unstable ground is a metaphor for her unstable mind, but then contrasts with famp and firm to contrast with her mind.

"Swiftly Severing" - alliteration shows how fast everything is happenign to create panic and rushing. severing has double meaning of severing the water and severing her life

"come on, come back" no brackets shows how song is getting louder -  metaphor for how things are becoming more realistic

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Bayonet Charge - Quotes

"Numb as a smashed arm" showing how the rifle has become a part of his body because its used so much, also showing how it is useless (Smashes)

"Suddenly" Gives the poem a fast pace to replicate the panic of war

"Raw" raw could represent raw skin from wounds or raw soldiers because they are so young

"Mid stride. Then.." The full stop in the middle of the line (Caesura) shows his mixed feeling of panic between patriotism and fear. this links with use of enjambment

"Smacking" Onomatopoeia creates strong imagery and sounds, making it realistic

"-" shows the moment he pauses and wonders why he's there"

"Etcetera" using vague language to show how unimportant the values of war are (moving away from patriotism and towards self fear)

"Touchy dynamite" shows how things are sensitive and could go off whenever

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The Falling leaves

the poem is about autumn leaves falling from the trees, and the leaves remind the poet of young soldiers being killed in war

FORM - made up of one stanza containing only one complex sentence representing a moment of intense thought. the lines are all different lengths representing random falling of leaves. regular rhyme scheme creates a peaceful atmosphere with gentle sounds

STRUCTURE - the poem takes a turn after the semi colon in line 6, before it the poet describes leaves falling, and after switches to describing soldiers being killed, this creates a comparison that they both die for no reason

LANGUAGE - the poet uses formal old fashioned language describing a simple scene which gives dignity and respect to the soldiers. also comparison to snowflakes emphasised large numbers as well as the speed and silence of their deaths. 

the poem has a calm reflective tone of sadness as the poet imagines vast numbers of deaths, there is sorrow for the deaths that have occurred for no reason, and also pays respect for those who have given their lives in war

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next to of course god america i

this poem is a parody of an American patriotic, pro war speech. the last line makes it clear the poem is spoken by a character, rather than reflecting the own poets opinions.

FORM - first 13 lines are a first person dramatic monologue and the final lines are in third person. this form could be mimicking a sonnet layout -the serious form is undermined by the content just asa the serious political speech is parodied by the poems words.

STRUCTURE - the first 13 lines are all within speech marks, the words are fragments of full sentences and have very little punctuation. making the phrases sound confusing and meaningless. the last line is the only one which is close to standard English which makes the rest of the poem sound even more meaningless and empty.

LANGUAGE - the poem sounds stirring and noble, but is being used ironically. it's an anti war poem that makes fun of pro war patriot, and contains lots of cliches about liberty, heroes and quotes from over the top American slang songs.

the poem uses a lot of sarcasm to mock the speaker, none of the points are explained or finished making it pointless, it also challenges patriotism and weather we are too gullible to pro war speeches and patriotic messages

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Falling leaves - Quotes

"Falling leaves" is an extended metaphor for the soldiers that are dying in war

"Fell like snowflakes" simile comparing falling of snowflakes to falling of soldiers, shows how unnoticeable it is (like a silent snowflake dropping to the floor)

"their beauty strewed" showing how deaths can be peaceful like falling snowflakes which is paying respect to the deaths of soldier

"no wind whirled them whistling" alliteration emphasises the idea that the leaves are old and are dying naturally, which contrasts with the early death of soldiers

"wiping out the noon" emphasised the large number of leaves falling as it is blocking the sun. emphasised large number of soldiers that die. 

"no wind of age" rather than being similar the leaves are now contrasting with soldiers, the leaves die naturally but the soldiers don't

"Flemish clay" there were major battles in a flemish provenance, showing how this is referring to war and not a literal poem

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next to of course god america i - Quotes

"next to of course" is a line from the song 'My country 'tis of thee' and "Oh say can you see" is from 'star spangled banner' (The U.S national anthem)

"and so forth" shows the speaker can be bothered to complete the speech making us question the integrity and meaning of his words

"Gorry" speaking so hastily he's mispronouncing his words - should be golly

"Jingo..gee..gosh.gum" American slang sounds like nonsense here, he could be showing how he can relate to ordinary people.

"they died instead" could be praising the soldiers for going ahead and dying in war for their country rather than thinking, but could also be criticising their blind patriotism

"shall the voice of liberty be mute?" stirring rhetorical question to end with sounds good, but is actually confusing. is he encouraging people to fight? does he think he represents the voice of liberty? is he speaking for his entire country?

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Hawk Roosting

the poem is about a hawk boasting about it's power as it think it's the most powerful and important creature in the world and thinks it controls the universe. the hark describes how it likes to kill it's prey violently. this could be a metaphor for the behaviour of political leaders or people in general

FORM - the poem is a dramatic monologue which helps to make the narrators argument stronger

STRUCTURE - the monologue ends with a confident statement about the future, showing the hawks sense of power and control. there is some repetition to add emphasis to key ideas

LANGUAGE - the formal and regal tone suggests a strong sense of pride and superiority. the earth is also personified as a humble subject of the hawk. the poet also uses a lot of first person pronouns which underlines how central and important the hawk is in it's world. finally the poem contains strong images of violence and death. this emphasised how efficient the hawk is at killing whilst remaining unemotional about it

hawks presented as powerful and destructive (it's proud of it's perfection and efficiency) and the hawks attitude it's egotistical and arrogant. it's omnipotent in it's own eyes

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Hawk Roosting - Quotes

"The top of the wood" its physical height in the world is a metaphor for its high status in the animal kingdom

"no falsifying dream" the hawk has no time for imagination or fantasy and stays true for it's physical nature - shows how it feels no emotion?

"Convenience, advantage" shows how the hawk is doing what natural, not doing anything wrong because its made to kill

"earths face upward" this is a metaphor for how the earths face is like a person face observing the hawk from below looking up at it. 

"Whole of creation" the hawk thinks its the most important thing, nothing else has meaning and no effort has been put into making other creatures. killing them means nothing?

"no argument" shows how the hawk can kill with no questioning

"The sun is behind me" literally the sun is behind it creates imagery, and shows how the sun is supporting it, like mother nature made it to kill with its "Hooked Feet"

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