Top of the morning to you. My name is Frank McCourt and I’ve actually been forced to stand up here and talk to you about ‘belonging’. Now, the dictionary describes belonging as being a member, being related or being owned. Sounds easy right? Ha! Wrong. Belonging is complex. It is a process that requires constant reinforcement. To belong entails a quirky fusion of kinship, locality, experience and even spirituality. There is no rule book on how to belong so it must be frequently improvised. Peter Skrzynecki communicates the concept of belonging through his poems ’10 Mary Street’ and ‘In The Folk Museum’ by using such techniques as similes metaphors and person pronouns and I, Frank McCourt, communicate my ideas on belonging in my biographical novel, ‘Angela’s Ashes’, through the use of analogy and allusion.
By using similes it allows Skrzynecki to articulate the connection that he had had to the house at ‘10 Mary Street’ to the audience. ‘…shut the house like a well-oiled lock…’ portrays the security Skrzynecki had felt within the house. This simile helps the audience to visualise the close connection that Skrzynecki describes in that stanza. This implies that belonging is through having a long history with certain possessions and having an emotional connection to that same possession, in this case Skrzynecki’s first Australian home.
The emotions of Skrzynecki towards the house are furthermore emphasised with the utilization of a metaphor. The line ‘we became citizens of the soil/that was feeding us – inheritors of a key/that’ll open no house/when this one is pulled down’ reveals the regret and sorrow that he felt when the very first place that Skrzynecki could call home since coming to Australia was torn down. It is through these techniques, such as similes and metaphors, that Skrzynecki was able to demonstrate the idea that belonging can occur through a locality and back up the previous thesis that to belong, an emotional and historical connection must be...
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