Belonging is a perception which can emerge from friends, family, groups or communities. Belonging varies and is a complex concept as everyone has their own individual experience with it. This essay will outline and explore both belonging and not belonging in three of Peter Skryznecki’s poems: Feliks Skyrznecki, St Patricks College and Ancestors, also supported by my two related texts the film Mean Girls by Mark Waters and the song Fast Car by Tracy Chapman.
Peter Skryznecki wrote “ Immigrant Chronicle” which was a range of poems reflecting his feelings towards the disconnection to his polish heritage, detachment from his family and own personal feelings of alienation. His parents were polish migrants, the family came to Australia after World War 2 and when peter was only 5 years old. His poems convey how his perception of belonging and not belonging are fueled by the relationships between him and his friends, family, groups or communities.
The poem Feliks Skyrzynecki deals with his fathers strong sense of belonging and peters opposing feeling of detachment and not belonging. The simile “Loved his garden like an only child” introduces the fathers positive feeling towards his surroundings. This later became evident through his devotion to the garden “ hard hands like cement”. Later on in the poem we can contrast his life before and now “ Two years in Germany forced labour” this quote suggests the difference in attitude he was ‘forced’ to do labour in germany but here he willingly does it because he feels a sense of belonging to home.
The poem then introduces his father on a social level “ they talked of farms and paddocks, they reminisced” this seperates the poet and father, as peter did not share the connection and history these polish men did. Peter becomes an observer not a participant, like in the poem st patricks college the persona is also an observer.
The next line “ remanents of a language I remembered unknowingly” uses an enjambment to...
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