Carol Ann Duffy Essay
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Originally was written by a Scottish lady, by the name of Carol Ann Duffy. The following commentary is to be comprised of varying elements, which conclude a decent analysis. These are the subject, form, tone, imagery, rhythm, rhyme and the poet’s intentions. The subject in this poem is the discovery of ones past and the process of moving forward in life by emigrating. This is explained through mental reactions or even physically. It seems as if the poet is attempting to convey to the reader that one must never forget the pleasures that one has experienced, and start being aware of life.
The following three stanzas are comprised of eight lines each. The first stanza attempts to form a connection with the usage of assonance, rhyme and a half rhyme, which is another term for a consonance. This can be seen in line 7 and line 8. where we didn’t live any more. I stared at the eyes of a blind toy, holding its paw.
An alliteration is inserted at the beginning of this stanza, Which fell through the fields, our mother singing This helps the lyrical quality, and provides a description of vast and warm area, a utopia for the child. A contrast is made evident between lines 2-3. Which fell through the fields, our mother singing
Our father’s name to the turn of the wheels. This only influences the statement previously mentioned, which focused on warmth and comfort. In addition to this it focuses on an even love spread among the whole area and family. The last element provided in this stanza is visible on the last line, … I stared at the eyes of a blind toy, holding its paw. The toy is used to clarify that a child is in the scenario somewhere and that it’s a household. However this stanza seems a bit illusion full and as the first stanza progresses the child was some how deceived, as she seems deceived that the doll is blind.
It can be certainly said that the second stanza has no rhyme scheme at all. This stanza illustrates an uneasiness and unfamiliarity with the surroundings that the speaker is compressed into. The wording is that of a direct nature, as in many lines are statements. This can be seen on line 9, All childhood is an emigration And line 11-12 Where no one you know stays. Others are sudden. Your accent wrong. This leads to an assumption, that the speaker is in some distemper, and then calms down and thinks a bit more which is cleverly carried out by the usage of commas as the following excerpt shows, All childhood is an emigration. Some are slow,
Leaving you standing, resigned, up an avenue Where no one you know stays. The second stanza illustrates an acceptation of emigration. The first 3 lines of the second stanza show one side to emigration and the remaining lines show another version to the whole idea. Compared to the first stanza, the speaker has come to terms with the travelling and mentality ideas, behind moving very often. There is one short usage of imagery on line 15, My parent’s anxiety stirred like a loose tooth in my head. This simile only provides an explanation into the anxiety that the speaker and its family had to go through, under the influence of emigration.
However the parent’s might not be showing their anxiety, the speaker knows what they are going through. The third and last stanza has a dull tone, and a blurry visage towards what is happening and to what may happen. Again the slowed tone is used on line 17. The usage of punctuation allows the speaker to gather its thoughts and ponder about the past experiences. Over the stanzas the tone has changed. On first sight the tone seemed depressive, and full of emotion. However it has become clear that the speaker has understood the matter, and not blames her/himself. To add to the lists of imagery, there is a simile mentioned on line 20
… I remember my tongue shedding its skin like a snake, my voice This usage of defining how the speaker talks, is cleverly stated in that, it outlines the clear differences visible between the speaker and the surroundings. A type “alien” image is perceived through the outlines life. Yet contradicting the previous statement, the speaker has come to terms that it is only natural to feel like an outcast, which is like a snake shedding its skin, in that it is only natural. The usage of “only” adds to a feeling of longing or missing something, which is held dear to the speaker’s heart.
In a sense this poem is unique to others, in that the first two stanzas focus on fitting in and belonging to something, whereas the third stanza seems not able to keep this, identity crisis theme afloat. The poem seeks to convey the poet’s deep and personal feelings, which she may have experienced when she was younger. Emigration is a common thing now a day for the modern youth, and each person has a different way of handling it. Overall this poem is about moving from a secure warm environment, that one calls home, to that of a different surrounding, by which the speaker treated it as emotional mine field.