Compare The Two of Us by Armitage and Havisham by Duffy, paying particular attention to how thoughts and feelings are presented. The two poems by Armitage and Duffy focus specifically on the destructive nature of emotions. The Two of Us focuses on the superficiality of possession whilst Havisham considers the deception of relationships. This brings about both of the speakers and poets feelings. The Two of Us deals with a comparison between two brothers who differ in terms of wealth and professions.
There is also a moral to Armitage’s poem, which emphasises the idea that material goods will be useless in death.
This means that the poem is thought provoking. On the other hand, Havisham concentrates on a female speaker who is angry and bitter about a failed relationship, most likely caused from an unfaithful partner. The poet explores themes of jealousy and violence, which gives an interesting twist on Duffy’s familiar theme of love. Nevertheless, the two poems have similarities in terms of perspective.
They both employ the personal pronoun “I” which expresses the deep individual thoughts and feelings of the speaker.
However, The Two of Us also involves the second person pronoun “you” to express a feeling of accusation and deep resentment. There are several differences in the structure of both poems. The Two of Us has a rhyme scheme, which mirrors the ‘I’ and ‘you’ of the poem. However, Havisham is written in free verse, which reflects the spontaneity of the speaker’s emotions. It also shows that the speaker is lacking control of her own feelings Therefore, The Two of US has a stricter structure to reinforce the divide between the rich brother and the poor one. There are similar aspects of thoughts and feelings in terms of imagery.
Both employ colour imagery to depict specific emotions and moods, for example, the colour “gold” in The Two of Us has connotations of glamour and a degree of luxury. Havisham uses colour in a more traditional and stereotypical sense i. e. “dark green pebbles for eyes,” this illustrating the speaker’s envy. However, The two of us is written more uniquely; this shown through the cluster of similes in the fifth stanza; “Like I’m some cutting taken from the tree” “Like I’m some twig related to the root. ” The speaker emphasises that they are actually related and could possibly be twins.
There are also similarities and differences between the two poems in terms of language. Both use juxtapositions but for different purposes. In The Two of Us it provides a contrast between rich and poor whilst in Havisham in expresses her feelings for her lover, “Beloved sweetheart bastard. ” However, both poems have unique features to portray thoughts and feelings. The pathetic fallacy in The Two of Us allows the reader to empathise towards the poor conditions the speaker lives in; ” … Rain to racket on the metal roof” The harsh sounding alliteration makes the weather seem a lot tougher and therefore the conditions he faces a lot tougher.
This makes the rich brother a more unlikeable character because he has not helped the poor one. Havisham uses different language techniques to portray the message of the poem. The final stanza shows how hurt and upset the speaker is, “Don’t think that its only the heart that b-b-b-breaks. ” This breakdown in language shows that the speaker is sobbing and been affected by the broken relationship. Overall, both poems are successful in presenting the thoughts and feeling of the speakers. They target specific emotions from the reader which aids in the reader understanding the poems.