• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Analysis of "You may turn over and begin" by Simon Armitage.

Extracts from this document...


Analysis of "You may turn over and begin" by Simon Armitage "You may turn over and begin" is an interior monologue of a person who is sitting an exam, seemingly on the subject of General Studies. The title itself lends itself well to this theme as "you may turn over and begin" are the words an exam invigilator says as an exam begins. The poem follows the thoughts of the speaker who may or may not be Armitage himself as he sits the exam whilst musing over exam questions and other things that enter the speakers thoughts when he has finished the paper. The first line of the poem could be said to be the title itself as it directly links to the first line of the main body of the poem. While the title is said by someone else the remainder of the poem is the thoughts of the speaker, the fact that it is someone's thoughts is reinforced by the seemingly random train of thought and the subjects themselves which are personal in nature- i.e. the speakers thoughts on "milk white breasts and... virginity" in lines 12 and 13. ...read more.


Lines 24-27 detail the girl primping herself but 28 and 29 tell of the motorbike pulling away, it is a typical of a story which would circulate around a college and the speaker reinforces this in line 30, referring to it as a "...rumour...". The final line answers the first question posed by the exam paper and once again follows the theme of random thoughts as the answer just pops up, much as it would into one's mind. It may also be noted of this poem that, due to strong allusions to the fact, that it is Armitage or at least a male who is writing this, though there are no specific mentions of the speakers sexuality, merely referring to his/herself in the first person 'I'. The structure of the poem is both random and yet structured. The lines are set out in 16 couplets (possibly a connection to the age of the speaker at time). Enjambment is evident in how the lines straddle separate couplets which connotes the theme of random thoughts without structure or regulated progress. The metre itself also reflects this with a seemingly random variance in syllables which reflects the fairly random process of thought. ...read more.


Particular attention is made to the appearance of the girl in lines 24 to 27 with pre modification evident, "...her tight jeans" which continues the theme of a hormonal teenager lusting after girls. The poem itself is a mixture of teen angst and comedy. We can assume that Armitage writes this poem from personal experience as most men can identify with the thoughts of the speaker, while everyone who has taken the general studies exams will identify with the speakers opinion on it as a bit of a waste of time. As a male I can sympathise with the speaker while a female reading this would be, in my opinion, more likely to focus on the comedy aspect of the poem rather than the hormonal maelstrom that is shown in the first half of the poem. While the structure, rhythm and lexis all support the context of the poem it may be said that while the theme of random thought is well presented there are sections which detract from the success of the attempt to achieve this theme. This mainly manifests itself in the ordered nature of some of the narration and use of simile ("long and cool like cocktails") which is not a realistic thought. Despite this the devices used combine to good effect in this perception which is very easy to identify with. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Simon Armitage section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Simon Armitage essays

  1. How does the poetry by Simon Armitage make the ordinary seem extraordinary?

    Armitage uses a lot of metaphors to show how lively the washing line is, the metaphors give the reader a clear but strange image of what the washing line is doing; "the cancan of a rara skirt, the monkey business of a shirt."

  2. Comparative Poem Essay - "About his Person" and "Cataract Operation" Simon Armitage was born ...

    However, Armitage does not over do it with these techniques, he uses just enough to create a realistic and enjoyable atmosphere. Like "About his person", "Cataract Operation" only consists of one simile; "The sun comes like a head, through last nights turtleneck".

  1. The purpose of my transformation was to turn the Simon Armitage poem 'Untitled' into ...

    He uses a very simple and uncomplicated lexis with very few complex verbs or adjectives. His vocabulary is filled with monosyllabic words. 'ma face is numb and my hands feel as cold as icicles I wish that stupid bus wud hurry up.'

  2. Life, its problems, the good and the bad of human experience, are major concerns ...

    "I am very bothered" is a poem of the bad of human experiences. It's about what you do to try to attract attention which has good and bad consequences. Simon Armitage shows how he feels about his experiences when he looks back on them.

  1. Kid - The poem is a dramatic monologue by Robin the Boy Wonder, the ...

    The alliteration links these otherwise very separate objects, which suggest that Armitage is weighing up the functions of the body. Is it a chassis - the strong frame of a vehicle that we use to power us; a cage - a structure which keeps the heart safe but in which

  2. Simon Armitage - poetry

    the shame or embarrassment of someone looking back on what he was like when he was younger. The structure of the poem is important. It is written in fourteen lines and can be classed as a sonnet, which is a traditional form for love poetry.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work