Half Caste1. What is the main tone of the poem?– The poet is angry but uses an unconventional style with humourto present his anger.1. How do we know this?– He is very ironic with the listener and accuses the listener ofnarrow-mindedness. “yu must come back…wid de whole of yumind”1. Tell me two methods he uses that help highlight his anger.– Assonance – helps orally emphasise the anger in his voice. E.g.“half-caste til dem overcast”. “Ah rass” is an Afro-Caribbeanterm of disgust.1. Comment on the type of English the poet uses.– The first three lines are standard English; perhaps this is tomake sure that he is listened to, as he feels that his own accentand dialect may make people judge him. The rest of the poem isin Afro-Caribbean dialect which helps him to reinforce his pridein his own identity and cultural background. It is also perfect fora performance poem.
Half Caste continued…1. What is the effect of the repetition of “yu” and “Explain yuself”?– It gives the poem an accusatory feel, so the reader feels spoken todirectly.1. What three examples does the poet use to show how ridiculous the term“half-caste” is?– If it’s okay to call me “half-caste”, then: As Picasso mixed colours in hispaintings, then they should be called “Half-Caste canvases; the mix ofgrey sky and white/blue sky in England should also be called half-castand as Tchaikovsky mixed white notes and black notes, his symphoniesshould be called “half caste”. He is being ironic.1. Comment on the poet’s use of punctuation.– He uses punctuation very sparingly and uses / instead of a comma or full stop. Forwardslash is often used to separate two different things and this perhaps helps to emphasise thetwo separate parts of his cultural identity. The lack of punctuation also makes the poemsound more like a rant- which emphasises his anger.1. How does the poet structure the poem?– In the first half of the poem, he shows how ridiculous the term “half caste” is by asking thelistener to explain what he/she means. In the second half of the poem, he extends the ironyby describing himself as only having half a body and then tells the listener to go away andthink about what he has said.
Exam Practice Questions…1. Explain how Agard uses language and form to putforward his views about injustice in “Half-Caste”2. Now compare this with how injustice is explored in “TheClass Game”.OR3. Now compare this with one other poem of your choicethat presents views about injustice.
Parade’s End1. What is the tone of the poem?– The tone is one of tension and anxiety1. What is the main theme?– The poem shows cultural conflict. The Indian familyexperience racial abuse from their locals in Yorkshire.1. How does the poet show the speaker’s fear?– “my brother’s eyes scanning the men” – suggests heis fearful of what they might do. “Bolted two metalbars”, “caged alarm” and “shutters”, show how thefamily have to take severe security measures toprotect themselves and their property.
Parade’s End continued…4. What is the significance of the “re-sprayed car”?– The car used to be brown and has been re-sprayeddue to an earlier racist acid attack. The colour“champagne-gold” suggests wealth and may causejealousy amongst the community. At the end of thepoem, another acid attack has taken place, changingthe car “from gold to the brown of our former colour”.This suggests that they will never escape this abuseas they cannot change their skin colour or culturalidentity and therefore, will always be judged by thosewho are racist.
Parade’s End continued…5. How and why does the poet create contrasts in thepoem?– The contrast between the colours brown and goldsuggests a contrast between wealth and poverty. Arethe locals jealous that the Indian family have theirown business and therefore make decent money?– This is further shown with reference to “swillingkidneys”, which suggests cheap cuts of meat and thefact that many people are on the “dole”. TheYorkshire lady describes the family as driving “flashcaahs!” which could also show jealously.
Exam Practice Questions…1. Explain how Nagra presents conflict in“Parade’s End”.2. Now compare this to how conflict ispresented in “Belfast Confetti”.OR3. Now compare this to how one other poetpresents conflict.
Belfast Confetti1. What is the main theme of the poem?– The panic and fear that result from a terroristattack.1. What is the tone of the poem?– The theme of the poem is one of fear andconfusion.1. What is the effect of starting the poemwith the word “suddenly”?– It highlights the unexpectedness of the attack.Like the persona, we are thrown into thechaos without any warning.
Belfast Confetti continued…4. Explain how the poet uses punctuation as a metaphor.– Belfast confetti was a name given to the home-madebombs that were made of metal shrapnel. As theshrapnel flies through the air, the poet describes it aslooking like punctuation marks on the skyline. At thesame time though, this helps to emphasise the chaos“It was raining exclamation marks” could describewhat the shrapnel looks like but could also reflect thecries and screams, which if written down, would mostlikely be followed by an exclamation mark.5.What is the effect of the ellipsis on line 3?– It suggests that the firing is on-going and alsosuggests that the persona cannot escape from it.
jBelfast Confetti continued…6. What is the effect of the caesura in the poem?– It highlights how he cannot escape. The punctuation marks actslike a dead-end, as the persona seeks an escape route. “Whycan’t I escape? Every move is punctuated. Crimea Street.Dead end again.”7.How does the poet show his panic and confusion at the end of thepoem?– The rapid use of questions reflects his confusion, showing thathe does not know what to do. “What is //My name? Where am Icoming from? Where am I going?”8.How does the poet show that he feels that this type of terrorist attackis like being at war?– References to battles from the Crimean War “Balaclava, Raglan”and references to weapons of war “Saracen”, “Makrolen face-shields”. This helps to highlight the sense of a battle.
Exam Practice Questions…1. Explain how Carson presents ideas offear and chaos in “Belfast confetti”.2. Now compare this to how the poetpresents fear in “Our Sharpeville”OR3. Now compare this to another poem thatexplores feelings of fear and or chaos.
Our Sharpeville1. What is the theme of the poem?– The fear and deceit that was experienced bywhite South African children in the aftermathof the Sharpeville Massacre.1. What is the tone of the poem?– Secrecy and fear1. How does the poet emphasise thechildishness of the persona?– “hopscotch”, “I ran to the gate to watch thempass” – shows child-like curiosity because sheknows she is not meant to.
Our Sharpeville continued…4. What is the effect of the alliteration in“foreign and familiar”?– It shows the conflict between the fact thatseeing them is an everyday occurrence but atthe same time threatening because they are“foreign”. (i.e. black)5. Explain the metaphor used in stanzaone?– “building hot arteries” – the mines that themen build are described as arteries becausethey help to provide the life-blood to the town(i.e. fuel)
Our Sharpeville continued…6. How does the poet use language to suggests childishexcitement in stanza two?– Her language reminds us of bible stories: “Greatcaravan”, “olive trees, a deep jade pool” etc. Shelinks the silver stars in the sky to the stars she used tobe given in bible classes. Her language is full ofcolour imagery, which makes her imaginings seemexotic and exciting.7. How is the colour imagery continued in the nextstanza?– “a pool of blood that already had a living name”. The persona isbrought back to reality as she remembers why she is supposedto fear the men – The pool of blood represents the loss of livesat Sharpeville.
Our Sharpeville continued…8. What does the poet mean when she says “these werenot heroes in my town, // but maulers of children”?– In her story book imaginings, the men would be theheroes of the story but she remembers that she hasbeen taught that the men are dangerous to children.She is told this as a way of scaring her into keepingaway from the black people.8. How does the poet emphasise that The Sharpevillemassacre is not talked about?– “had to remain nameless”, “this fearful thing”8. How does the poet use language to reflect secrecy andconcealment in the last stanza?– “curtains drawn tightly”, “locked yard”, “closed rooms”
Our Sharpeville continued…11.What do you think the girl feels about thissituation and what evidence can youprovide to support this?– She feels “shame” that she is curious aboutthe blacks as her family have made her feelthis way. She knows that she has been lied to“my grandmother lie” which suggests that sheis beginning to question the fear of the whitecommunity. However, at the same time, sheis worried that the lies might be true.
Exam Practice Questions…1. Explore how de Kok depicts fear andconflict through the eyes of a child in thepoem “Our Sharpeville”.2. Now compare this to how conflict andfear are explored in “Exposure”.OR3. Now compare this to how conflict andfear are explored in another poem.
Exposure1. What is the theme of the poem?– War and the effects of war on the soldiers.1. What is the tone of the poem?– The tone is pessimistic, one of hopelessnessand despair.1. Why does the poet start with the word“our”?– He shows that this is an event that affectedmany.
Exposure continued…4. Find an example of images in stanza one and explaintheir effect.– “iced east winds that knive us” – personifies the windas being like a killer.4. Find two more examples of images in stanza two.– “mad gusts tugging on the wire, // like twitchingagonies of men” – simile personifies the wind makingit sound more dangerous.– “like a dull rumour of some other war” – suggests thenoise of the guns has become so constant they arebarely conscious of it.
Exposure continued…6. What emotion is conveyed most strongly in stanzathree? Give examples.– Words that suggest sadness – “poignant”, “misery”,“melancholy”– Words that suggests hopelessness – “We only knowwar lasts”, “But nothing happens”6. How is nature personified in stanza three?– “Dawn massing in the east her melancholy army //attacks once more in ranks on ranks of shiveringgrey” - the poet presents nature as a military force.The words “melancholy” and “shivering grey” suggestthat the weather is no happier to be fighting than themen themselves.
Exposure continued…8. Comment on the effect created in line 16.– Use of alliteration and hard consonant sounds(consonance) sounds like the bulletsthemselves.9. How and why does Owen personify thesnow?– “flowing flakes that flock, pause and renew”and “Pale flakes with fingering stealth comefeeling for our faces”. Owen makes the snowsound like a deadly enemy. The alliterationreflects its deadly silence and softness.
Exposure continued…10.Where and why does Owen refer to thepast in the poem?– In stanzas five and six, the soldiers dream ofbeing back home before the war started.“Slowly our ghosts drag home” shows howhard it is to summon up these memories thatthey seem so far away from. “on us the doorsare closed” suggests that they will never beable to return. Does this mean that people athome have forgotten about them? Or don’tappreciate what they’re doing?
Exposure continued…11. How does Own finish the poem on a negative andpessimistic note?– “For love of God seems dying” – the men cannotbelieve that God could let them suffer like this.– “All their eyes are ice” – could suggest soldiers whoare now dead or soldiers whose expressions are nowfixed in pain and hopelessness.11. What is the effect of the repetition of “But nothinghappens?”– It helps to reinforce the hopelessness andpointlessness of what the men are going through.– The repetition also reflects the monotony of the men’sexperiences.
Exam Practice Questions…1. Explain how Wilfred Owen presents thehorror of war in “Exposure”.2. Now compare this to how the horror ofwar is explored in August 6, 1945.OR3. Now compare this to another poem thatexplores the horror of war.
Catrin1. What is the theme of the poem?– The conflict that can arise between mother anddaughter.1. What is the tone of the poem?– Pain in the first half and admiration and frustration inthe second half.1. How does the poet suggest that birth can be like aconflict?– Both mother and child fight for the child to be born.The mother’s pain and effort make the baby seem likean adversary that she must be free of, while the baby,tied by the umbilical cord struggles to emerge.
Catrin continued…4. Why does the poet repeat “I canremember”?– To show that she is thinking back to an earliertime in their relationship.4. How does the poet describe the hospitalroom?– “hot white room” – suggests it isuncomfortable– “Environmental blank, disinfected” – suggestsit is sterile and lacks soul.
Catrin continued….6. What is the “Red rope of love”?– This represents the umbilical cord6. Why do you think they both “fought over”it?– The umbilical cord has held mother and childtogether since conception. If the struggle islike a tug of war and they were fighting overthe rope, this suggests that the mother wantsthe baby to be born, while the other (the baby)wants to stay where it is. This implies that themother has to fight extremely hard to givebirth while the baby resists it.
Catrin continued…8. What does the poet mean in lines 11-14?– This could be a metaphor to show the words shescreams while in labour, filling the room.8. What does the poet mean by “wild tender circles // Ofour struggle”?– Perhaps ‘circles’ suggests the shape of the birthcanal through which the baby emerges. In shapethey contrast with squareness of the room. ‘Wild’suggests to us that the struggle is intense andpainful, almost out of control, yet paradoxically it is‘tender’ at the same time. ‘Tender’ might refer to thetype of physical sensation the speaker feels, or itcould refer to the sort of love between the motherand baby.
Catrin continued…10.Comment on the effect of line 16.– The caesura, “Separate.” reinforces theseparation between mother and child. Theword “shouted” is a metaphor to show thatthey both want their own way (they are notreally shouting).10.What does the poet mean when she says“Still I am fighting you off”?– This could refer to the every day conflicts thatarise between mother and daughter.
Catrin continued…12.How does the poet’s language in stanzatwo show her admiration of her daughter?– “straight, strong, long // Brown hair”, “rosy,//Defiant glare” The alliteration and rhyme ionthese lines, help to highlight her admiration.12.Comment on the line “From the heart’spool that old rope…”– “the heart’s pool” could suggest the depths ofthe mother’s feelings for her daughter. “thatold rope” is a metaphor for the umbilical cord.The daughter is still struggling to break awayfrom her mother in her quest forindependence.
Exam Practice Questions…1. Explore how a conflict between twopeople is shown in “Catrin”.2. Now compare this to how conflict isshown between two people in “CousinKate”OR3. Now compare this to how conflict isshown between people in another poemof your choice.
Your Dad Did What?1. What is the theme of the poem?– Conflict that arises through misunderstandings.1. What is the tone of the poem?– The tone is of frustration as the teacher doesnot understand and jumps to the wrongconclusions.1. Why does the poet use question marks asthe teacher marks the pupil’s work?– They show the teacher’s growing confusion andfrustration.
Your Dad Did What continued…4. Why does the poet give so littleinformation about the pupil?– This implies that the teacher does not reallytake much notice of the children as anindividuals; they are just “essays” to her.4. Find evidence from the poem to showthat it is written from the point of view ofthe teacher.– “you make them write about the holiday”– “You find the ‘E you gave him”
Your dad Did What continued…6. What is the attitude of the teacher towards the pupils? Findevidence to support your answer.– The teacher seems rather bored by the pupils, referring to“reams of what this girl did, what that lad did,” which suggeststhat she is not interested in what they write. She seems moreinterested in how they write than in what they write. She oftenrefers to them as “they” which is very impersonal.6. Explain the twist at the end of the poem.– The poet puns on the letter “E”, the teacher gives the child an“E” grade for the work, and it is the missing letter “e” that makesthe child’s experience clear to the reader. This explains what hashappened to the child. We feel sympathy that his father hasdied yet he still has to write about his holiday. It is unclearwhether the teacher finally realises what the child means.
Your Dad Did What continued…8. Why does the poet include the child’swords in italics?– It gives the child a “voice”. The reader canunderstand the confusion the teacher has infirst reading the work. When we understandwhat it means we sympathise with the child.9.What is the effect of the regular rhymescheme?– This gives the poem a child-like quality butcontrasts with the sadness of the topic.
Exam Practice Questions…1. Explain how Hannah explores the relationshipbetween teacher and pupil in “Your dad didWhat?”.2. Now compare this to how the relationshipbetween mother and daughter is shown in“Catrin”.OR3. Now compare this to how the relationshipbetween adults and children is shown inanother poem of your choice.
The Class Game• What is the main theme of the poem?The narrator is angry at people who judgeher because of her class and the way shespeaks. The poem is a humorous look atclass stereotyping. The narrator is proudof her class.• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is angry but positive at the end
The Class Game continued…• How does the speaker feel about her class? Evidence?Proud of her identity and class “proud of the class that I come from”• Find evidence that she is not very well off.“me second hand clothes”/ “live in a corpy”• Find evidence to show that she feels people judge her.“wince when you hear…”• What do the words “Well mate!” suggest about the speaker’scharacter?She is strong minded – won’t be put down.• How does she show that the working class work hard?“hands are stained with toil”• What do these words suggest about her attitude towards the higherclasses?: “crook me little finger when I drink me tea?”She thinks the higher classes are pretentious.
The Class Game continued…• What is the effect of the rhyme in the poem?Gives the poem an upbeat feel to help show that the narrator will not bedown-trodden. It also highlights the questions – showing that she isstanding up for herself.• Where is slang used and what is its effect?“bog”, “belly”Reflects the way the narrator speaks; she is proud of how she speaks.• Where is dialect used and what is the effect?“A cleaner is me mother”“A docker is me brother”Again, this adds to the poet’s pride in her identity and Liverpool roots.• The poem is full of contrasts. Find some examples? What is theeffect?“stained” and “soft lily white”Reinforces the difference between the speaker and the person she isspeaking to. Reinforces class division.
Exam Practice Questions1. Explore how effectively Casey has used vocabulary andpoetic devices to portray differences in social class andher attitudes towards them. Use examples from thepoem to support your answer.2. Now compare this to how the poet presents thedifference between the two characters in “Hitcher”OR3. Now compare this to how differences are shown in apoem of your choice.
Cousin Kate• What are the main ideas of the poem?The narrator of the poem explains how betrayed she has been by hercousin who has married a man who she was in a relationship with.The narrator would have been considered a “fallen woman” in thetime the poem was set, as she has slept with a man outside ofmarriage and had a child as a result. The narrator compares herselfas a “fallen woman” to her cousin who now has status in hermarriage.• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is one of anger and betrayal• There are many conflicts and contrasts in the poem. How many canyou find?“palace-home” and “mean estate”“good and pure” and “an unclean thing”“contented” and “woe”“me an outcast thing” and “you good and pure”• The Poem is a Ballad. What is a ballad?A narrative in verse form; they tell a story and have a song-like quality.
Cousin Kate continued…• Find an example of a simile in stanza two. What is the effect?“He wore me like a golden knot,He changed me like a glove:”He thought she made him look good on his arm but he quickly changedher for someone new – like one changes fashion accessories.• What is the effect of the repetition of sentence structure in stanzaone?It helps to stress her regret.• Why does the poet make reference to a dove and what words doesthis contrast with?It is a symbol of purity. An “unclean thing”• What do the following lines mean?“He lifted you from mean estateTo sit with him on high.”He raised your status from rich to poor
Cousin Kate continued…• How does the poet show the speaker’scontrasting feelings about her son?“my shame, my pride,”• What do the following lines mean?“Your sire would give broad lands for oneTo wear his coronet.”Your father would give anything for you tohave a son
Examination Practice Questions1. Explain how Rossetti creates sympathyfor the narrator in “Cousin Kate”.2. Now compare this to how the poetcreates sympathy for the pupil in “YourDad did What?”OR3. Now compare it to how the poet createssympathy in a poem of your choice.
The Drum• What are the main ideas of the poem?The poem is about how men are persuaded to go to war bythe recruitment methods which suggest that war isglorious. The drum accompanied the men as theymarched off to war and was associated with this senseof glory. The poet shows how this idea of glory is falseand that the reality of war is horrid. Therefore, he hatesthe sound of the drum because it reminds him of the liesthat are told to soldiers before they go to war.• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is one of anger.• What contrast is shown between the first stanza and thesecond stanza?
The Drum Continued….• What contrast is shown between the first stanza and thesecond stanza?The first stanza shows the false associations that peoplehad with the drum sound. It made people think of goingto war as being glamorous.The second stanza shows the reality of what, which wasnot glamorous at all.• What is the effect of the regular rhythm and rhyme?It reflects the steady beat of the drum. The up-beat feelreflects how young men were encouraged to go to warby being promised glory, honour and status.In the second stanza, the regular rhyme and rhythm helpsto reflect how constant and continual the real suffering ofwar was.
The Drum Continued…• Which words in line one shows that he does notlike the sound of the drum?“hate” and “discordant”• What evidence is provided to show that youngmen are fooled into going to war?“thoughtless youth”, “lures”, “tawdry lace”,“glistening arms”, “Ambition”• What is the effect of the alliteration in “fight, andfall, in foreign lands.”?Alliteration highlights how quickly they will die
The Drum Continued…• What is the effect of repeating the first two linesin stanza two?It helps to reflect the constant beat of the drum.• Can you spot a lexical field in stanza two?Words conveying the horror of war: “burning”,“ruined”, “mangled”, “dying groans”, “widows’tears”, “orphans’ moans”, “Misery’s”• What is the effect of starting several lines with“And”?Repetition of And suggests that the list of horrorsgoes on and on.
Examination Practice Questions1. Explore how Scott uses negativelanguage to convey his attitude towardswar.2. Compare this to how the poet of“Invasion” conveys attitudes towards war.OR3. Compare this to how the poet of anotherpoem from the anthology conveysattitudes towards war.
Invasion• What contextual information do you know aboutthe subject matter of the poem?Iraq invaded Kurdistan and persecuted its people,killing thousands of Kurds between 1987 and1989. The poem is from the point of view of theKurds, waiting for an approaching invasion.• What are the main ideas of the poem?The speaker is a Kurd awaiting an Iraqi invasion ofhis homeland. He shows the anticipation andfear as they wait and the difference between theinvading army and their poor defence.
Invasion Continued….• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is of fear and hopelessness.• How does the poet emphasise the differencebetween “them” and “us” in the first stanza.Regular use of personal pronouns “they”, “their”,“they’ll” etc. but only one “we” – does thissuggest that there are many more of “them”?• What is the effect of the caesura in line one?It helps to add to the sense of threat – as if it issomething that they cannot stop.
Invasion Continued….• How does the poet make the Iraqi soldiersappear sinister in stanza one?“they’ll appear through the mist”• Why does the poet describe the Iraqis aswearing “death-bringing uniforms”?It helps to suggest that they are deadly – oncethey put on the uniform, they become killers.• How does the poet show that the Iraqi soldiersare well-equipped to win?“guns and tanks pointing forward” – they have allthe right weaponry and are in an aggressiveposition.
Invasion continued…• How does the poet create a contrastbetween the Kurds and the Iraqi soldiersin Stanza two?“rusty guns and boiling blood” – they arepoorly equipped.• How does the poet’s choice of verbs instanza four help to show the horror ofwar?“cover”, “mix” and “creep” emphasise thesheer quantity of blood lost.
Invasion Continued…• How does the poet’s use of language suggestthe hopelessness of the situation?“We will lose this war,” – simple statementsuggests that there is no other ending possible.“Keep your head down and stay in // doors” –imperative verbs suggest that the speaker feelsstrongly that there is no point in fighting back.“We’ve lost this war before we have begun” –ending the poem in this way is very bleak andsums up the poet’s view.
Examination Practice1. How does the poet show attitudestowards conflict in “Invasion”?2. Now compare this to how the poet showsattitudes towards conflict in“Conscientious Objector”OR3. Now compare this to how another poetshows attitudes towards conflict.
Hitcher• What are the main ideas in the poem?The narrator is not happy with his life and picks up ahitchhiker who appears to have all the freedom that hedesires. The narrator commits an unprovoked violentattack on the hitchhiker and shows no remorse for hisactions.• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is very casual and laid back.• What details do we get about the speaker in stanza one?He does not appear to like his job as he appears to take alot of sick days. He does not own his own car, soperhaps does not earn much. He is “tired” and “underthe weather, suggesting a general unhappiness with life.
Hitcher Continued….• Which three words in stanza one emphasise thespeaker’s dissatisfaction with life and how does the poetemphasise these?“tired”, “fired”, “hired” – the use of rhyme helps them tostand out.• How does the poet emphasise the contrast between thespeaker and the hitchhiker?“He was following….good earth for a bed” – this creates anidyllic image of someone who has no responsibilities.• Why does the poet include the words “The truth he said,was blowin’ in the wind”This is rather a “hippy” idea and is also the name of a BobDylan song about carefree living.
Hitcher Continued….• What does the phrase “I let him have it”?He inflicted violence on the hitchhiker.• Where is language used to show violence?“once / with the head, then six times with the krooklok / inthe face”• How does the poet show that the speaker is unfeeling?“didn’t even swerve” – suggest he is more affected by hisdriving skills. “Stitch that, I remember thinking, / you canwalk from here”.• How does the poet draw a link between the twocharacters?“we were the same age, give or take a week” – suggeststhat the speaker realises that is life could have turnedout like this.
Hitcher Continued…• What do his references to the weather suggestabout the speaker?“The outlook for the day was moderate to fair” –suggest that the act of violence has made thespeaker feel better and set him up for the day.• What is the effect of the enjambment in thepoem?It suggest the laid back attitude of the speaker – asthough he is telling us a personal anecdote thathe is proud of.
Examination Practice1. Explore how Armitage presents conflictbetween two people in “Hitcher”.2. Now compare this to how the poetpresents the conflict between two peoplein “Cousin Kate”.OR3. Now compare this to how another poetpresents the conflict between two people.
O What is that Sound?• What are the main ideas of the poem?The poem is a ballad, telling the story of a married couplewho observe the movements of an army as theyapproach their home. The wife asks questions as shefeels uneasy and wants to know what the army is doing.The husband tries to reassure her that they are no threatbut then at the last minute, runs off, leaving his wife toface an angry army. The reader assumes that thehusband was a traitor to the army and now he is a traitorto his wife.• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is one of unease.
O What is That Sound continued…• Who are the speakers in the poem and how do we knowthis?A husband and wife: “dear”, “were the vows you sworedeceiving deceiving?”, “I promised to love you dear”• What clues are there that the poem is set in the past?“drumming”, “scarlet soldiers”, “horses”• What do we learn about the soldiers in the poem?The soldiers are very disciplined and serious; they seem tomean business. They sound increasingly threatening asthe poem goes on: “usual manoeuvres”, “running”,“boots are heavy”, “eyes are burning”
O What is That Sound continued…• What different methods does the poet use to createtension?• Use of dialogue…This draws the reader into the conversation.• Use of the different senses…“O what is that sound that so thrills the ear?”These make the reader feel as if they can see, hear andfully experience the situation.• Repetition of words and phrases…“O what…”This adds to the sense of fear, as the soldiers are gettingever nearer. It also adds to the steady rhythm; we canalmost hear the soldiers marching towards us.
O What is that Sound continued…• Methods to create tension continued…• Violent words…“splintered the door” - Suggests the violenceand brutality of the men. Suggests theywill deal violently with the narrator.• Use of Questions…“O what is that light I see flashing so clear?”- This reinforces the uncertainty and fearthe narrator feels.
O What is that Sound continued…• What is the effect of the regular rhyme andrhythm?It reflects the idea of soldiers marching. Therepetition in the poem adds to this.• What evidence is there that the soldiers arearmed and organised?“with all that gear”, “usual manoeuvres”• What do the following lines suggest about thespeaker? No, I promised to love you, dear,But I must be leaving.”He seems happy to betray her love and try toescape
Examination Practice1. Explore how Auden builds tension,explores repercussions and expressesemotions connected with war.2. Now compare this to how war ispresented in “Conscientious Objector”.OR3. Now compare this to how another poetpresents ideas about war.
Conscientious Objector• What are the main ideas of the poem?The narrator describes Death as a person who shewill not help in any way. She is anti-war and apacifist who sees the only winner of war to beDeath. She makes many promises of things thatshe will not do to help lead people to theirdeaths.• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is one of defiance.• Why is the opening line on its own?It sums up the poet’s thoughts about fighting. Shecannot avoid her own eventual death but she will
Conscientious Objector continued….• What does the word “shall” actually mean?It means “definitely will”• The poet personifies Death? How doesshe do this? Find three examples.“I hear him”“He is in haste”“he has business in Cuba”“Though he flick my shoulders with his whip”Etc……
Conscientious Objector continued…• The narrator makes death appear sinister andfrightening. Find evidence to prove this.“he cinches the girth”“flick my shoulders with his whip”“his hoof on my breast”• How does the poet show that there are many wars goingon around the world?He uses repetition of “business” making reference to“Cuba” (alludes to the American conflict with Spain,during which Cuba fought for its independence.) and “theBalkans” (alludes to World War 1.)
Conscientious Objector continued….• What other activities does the poet appear to criticise inthe poem?Corruption in business – “Not on his pay-roll” and actionsagainst minority groups, such as racism: “I will not tellhim where the / black boy hides in the swamp.”• What is the effect of the caesura in the poem?Look at the semi-colons, it helps to add a sense of urgency.What might the poet be referring to with the words,“though he promises me much”?This hints at the recruitment methods used to get people tojoin up
Examination Practice….1. Explore how the poet presents attitudestowards war in the poem.2. Now compare this to how the poetexplores attitudes towards war in “TheDrum”.OR3. Now compare this to how another poetexplores attitudes towards war.
August 6, 1945• What are the main ideas of the poem?The narrator describes the pilot, Paul Tibetts as heflew the Enola Gay over Hiroshima and droppedan atomic bomb. The poem is very visual usingmuch imagery to convey the horror of what hesaw beneath him and to describe the nuclearmushroom cloud. We are told that the pilot willbe left with nightmares.• What is the tone of the poem?The tone is one of horror and loss.
August 6, 1945 continued….• What images are there in the poem and what is theireffect?• “bees drizzle over / hot white rhododendrons”This could suggest the beautiful, calm nature in thecountryside before the explosion. “white” suggestsinnocence but “hot” suggests the intensity of theexplosion. The reader will be sorry at such devastation.• “went up like an apricot ice”Reflects the shape of the cloud and the innocent andpleasant associations we have with ice-cream contrastwith the horror and deadliness of the bomb.
August 6, 1945• Images continued….• “saw Marilyn’s skirt’s / fly over her head for ever”A metaphor of the iconic white dress of Marilyn Monroe todescribe the mushroom cloud. The words “for ever”,suggest that the repercussions of the bomb will last forever.• “a scarlet girl / with her whole stripped skin”This ghastly image reflects the horror inflicted on the body– her burnt skin has peeled from her body. Choosing todescribe a “girl”, the poet emphasises the innocence ofthose who died.• “people are becoming / as lizards”The burning and peeling of skin have left the people morelike reptiles who shed their skin habitually.
Examination Practice1. Explain how fell uses imagery,vocabulary and form to convey the horrorof a nuclear attack.2. Now compare this to how the poetconveys the horror of war in “Exposure”.OR3. Now compare this to how another poetuses vocabulary and form to presentsomething shocking.
August 6, 1945 continued…• What do you think the poet means in the last stanza ofthe poem?Clearly the poet believes that the pilot would havenightmares over what he has been part of and seen.The ladybirds could reflect the red and black of thecharred bodies that he can see below him. It could alsorefer to a children’s rhyme…• What else could the ladybirds be a reference to?Ladybird, ladybird fly awayHome, your house is on fire,Your children are gone”This could reflect what the people of Hiroshima faced afterthe devastating effects on their homes and families.