Quickdraw

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  • Created by: Qiao-Chu
  • Created on: 14-04-13 16:22

Background

Carol Ann Duffy was first female Poet Laureate in 2009.

Born in 1955 in Glasgow.

Wrote poems giving voice to the dispossessed (people excluded from society).

Gritty, disturbing style, black humour to make social and political points.

Quickdraw middle of Rapture Collection abot highs and lows of romantic relationship - offers both positive and negative views of a relationship.

Quickdraw is one-sided snapshot of relationship. Speaker waiting for contact from lover. Unclear context, do not know if speaker welcomes contact or not. Some sort of disagreement or separation has occured before events of poem.

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Structure

Four stanzas four lines each, two joined with enjambment (one line carries onto next).

No rhyme scheme or regular rhythm, mostly written in free verse.

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Language

Plays on imagery associated with western cowboy films. Gunslingers is a term in westerns to describe those who fight with guns often shooting from hip. Poem starts by replacing guns with phones, humorous comment on how relationships can be like a fight or 'showdown', imagery also suggests violence in characters.

Light-hearted mood created by images typical of slapstick, metaphor of tongue as weapon perfectly describes argument and is comic with alliteration of 't's.

Punctuation also used to reflect feelings of speaker. In first stanza a long opening sentence followed by short one, creating tension in comedic way as we, like speaker, prepares for phone ringing. Punctuation also in final stanza as speaker reels at receiving two texts at once. She composes 'take this...and this...' like shots of gun or kisses, purposefully ambiguous so meaning of final line open to interpretation. Speaker giving in and returning kisses with her own or last attempt at shootout?

Intimate physical words and phrases suggesting genuine closeness between lovers.

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Attitudes, Themes and Ideas

Explores how relationships can be struggle for power, often leading to arguments. Essentially humorous poem but deals with emotional struggle. Ending ambiguous, responding positively or negatively?

Imagery from historic western film genre to clash with contemporary references to mobiles and texts drawing attention to idea that relationships have long been this way. Whatever lovers choose as weapons, relationships still the same.

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Comparisons

Nettles uses imagery of different context to bring significance to seemingly everyday circumstances.

Sister Maude presents conflict and violence in relationship, but sibling rivalry not lovers.

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