Another Perspective: The Boy Racer
Boy Racers are seen as the scum of society - hotheads that recklessly endanger their lives and the lives of others, break the law and disturb the city and tear around in modified, loud and outrageous cars with bright, dazzling neons and wide-bore tailpipes. However, the Boy Racer’s Epiphany by Owen Sheers presents a new perspective - an inside glimpse into the heart and soul of a boy racer. This poem uses creative language features and resonating text to effectively press his point. Throughout the poem, an underlying sense of speed is used to create the effect of a boy racer driving recklessly in the dark, with a technique known as enjambment, a term used to describe a lack of punctuation in text that makes it more free-flowing. This technique is used to great effect, especially in Stanza 1, where the last three lines are compressed into a single phrase. The boy racer fantasizes to himself as being royal and divine – Stanza 1 metaphorically states that the town is his. This shows ownership and authority - which he uses to run rampant about the town in the night. This also ties in with the streetlights being “faithful servants” that aid him in his path at night. These metaphorical effects and imagery are used to show his royalty effectively. It is also said that he flies through the illusion of “vaulted halls” – a mystical power often associated with the supernatural. It is also said that the headlights of his car are “smoke-marbled gold”, creative imagery that alludes to his fantastical richness. The boy racer in the poem has an intimate connection with his car – in Stanza 2, it personification is used to say that the car’s heart “drives him”, which personifies the car and links them emotionally and physically – the car is an extension of himself. Alliteration is also used to create a realistic thumping effect similar to the sound of a subwoofer: “the beat of bass like blood in the speakers”. Other metaphorical phrases such...
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