Eavan Boland Personal Response

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The poetry of Eavan Boland is clear,relateable and realistic.The stanzas in her poems are terse,but she manages to evoke strong feelings in the reader,e.g. the sense of apathy in "The War Horse".Her poems are relateable because she is a contemporary poet and her themes generally involve the suburban culture.Her poetry is realistic because she elaborates and paints evocative pictures of ordinary sights like "the harsh shyness of the Atlantic light" (White Hawthorn in the West of Ireland).In the following,I will express in more detail of my personal response to the poetry of Eavan Boland.

The theme of War and Human suffering is very powerful and appealing to me.In "The War Horse",she shows how people living in suburbia can turn a 'blind eye' to the war and suffering of others.The apathy of the people made the poet angry,she was sarcastic in the lines - "Why should we care/If a rose,a hedge,a crocus is uprooted/Like corpses,remote,crushed,mutialated?"-it shows the nonchalance of the people towards the distant suffering of others.In emphasis of the theme of war,the poet uses the horse as a metaphor of violence - "[the] iron of his shoes as he stamps death/Like a mint on the innocent coinage of earth".The size,weight and force of the horse causes some damage and destruction,imitating the raw violence that is happening to those distant in Northern Ireland.As the horse leaves,the poet "breathe[s] relief" - this reminds her of her ancestors and she feels ashamed of herself as she is just as apathetic as the people in her neighbourhood,because she is also only observing the horse coming into her neighbourhood.Her "blood is still with atavism",for a fleeting moment she is reminded of her ancestors whose lives were threatened but they fought back and had passion for the safety of others but she is ashamed for she "use[d] the subterfuge of curtains" and became just as bad as her neighbours.

The theme of war is further emphasized in "Child of Our time".This poem deals...
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