This essay attempts to compare and contrast five different poems written by five different authors both contemporary and heritage poems. The contemporary authors include: Seamus Heaney, Kathleen Jane and Grace Nichols the heritage writers are W.B.Yeats and William Blake. I will be discussing the different styles ideas and themes and also their similarities. The first poem I am discussing is ‘The Blackbird of Glanmore’ which is a contemporary poem written by Seamus Heaney. In this poem, Heaney uses the blackbird to refer to his lost brother. He makes a direct mention of ‘It’s you, blackbird, I love‘. This implies that the blackbird either is a symbol of his brother or is in fact his brother’s sprit. The blackbird gives two very contrasting symbols here. First is the liveliness of the bird which is the ‘alive’ memory of his brother and probably his lively character. This is coupled with the second symbol of bad luck and superstition, to remind him that his brother is dead. The poem is made up of six verses, alternating between five-lines and one-lines. I think the use of this format really gives you the sense of circulation, just like the path from life to death. The poem’s opening and closing lines are very strong and suggest an eerie presence, ‘On the grass when I arrive’ and ‘In the ivy when I leave’. Heamus uses the oxymoron of ‘Filling the stillness with life’ (first stanza) this makes you think of frozen stillness but at the same time imagining potential energetic movement.
‘Crossing the Loch’ the second poem I will discuss and is a contemporary poem written by Kathleen Jamie. Jamie is a Scottish poet, her poetry draws extensively on the landscape and pollution of the landscape. She uses Pathetic fallacy in the “hunched hills”. The landscape embodies cold and fear and is a looming presence. A threatening mood is created early in the poem. The narrator describes how the water “lipped” the boat, and uses the word “mouthed” these portray the loch as a...
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