John Foulcher Essay

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John Foulcher’s poems make us ponder, if there is any hope for humanity and is there anyone that is truly innocent? His poems reveal to us the violence and brutality of the nature we live within and for us to question as to our own morality. In this essay I will analyse all six of his poems of which I studied. However I will only discuss the poems “For The Fire” and “Martin and The Hand Grenade” in detail. The theme of “For The Fire” is about the natural cycle of life and explores the interrelationships and differences between man and animal. Within the poem the persona is collecting kindling wood for a fire and sees a kookaburra killing a lizard in a tall tree. He observes this but does not intervene or make judgement. However he exploits this situation by picking up the twigs and branches that fell because of the lizard’s beating. “For The Fire” is very simple in the delivery of its ideas, it has only 2 stanzas which add up to a total of 12 lines. Each thought is separated by a comma which makes it very easy to understand. For Example “Outside, gathering kindling, a chopping sound from the forest” there is a break between every action and description. This follows Foulcher’s style in terms of accessibility. Overall the poem is very cold and emotionless and the use of words such as “hacks”, “flays” and “axe-blade beak” gives the reader a sense of the violence and brutalness taking place in nature. From the quote “Even now, all of it of its bones smashed. Oblivious, the bird flays it still” Foulcher uses imagery to suggests that animals are without morality and react to raw instinct. This isn’t so different when compared to the persona in the poem as he does not make any moral judgement in relation to the kookaburra’s action and even takes advantage of this event. The poem suggests the idea of survival of the fittest. The world we live in is tough and savage and to some extent we must also be savage and cold hearted so as to be able to survive within it. “Martin...
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