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Betjeman may not write earnestly about religion, love, and death but this does not mean his poetry is lacking in real faith and sincere emotion. Explore this view of Betjeman's poetry in at least two of his poems

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Introduction

Betjeman may not write earnestly about religion, love, and death but this does not mean his poetry is lacking in real faith and sincere emotion. Explore this view of Betjeman's poetry in at least two poems Some people say that John Betjeman does not write seriously about religion, love or death. There are many examples of poems when he is not writing seriously but there is still real faith and sincere emotion. The first poem I am going to write about is 'Devonshire Street W1'. Devonshire Street is the street next to Harley Street in London; it is a real place. From the first stanza describes the architecture around Devonshire Street. Betjeman uses solid, reassuring words like 'wrought iron' and 'rich' and he says the sun is shining. We get the impression of a good day, in a nice place and are unaware of the bad news coming to us soon. The word 'shuts' on its own could be referring to the door, literally, or his life. ...read more.

Middle

The final stanza shows more genuine emotion than the rest of the poem. His wife takes his hand and reminds him of good times to distract him. The real meaning of the poem is about their time together; their marriage and how they cope, not the bad news that he receives about his terminal illness. This is real emotion, deep emotion and love and in this verse Betjeman shows that he can write seriously as well as earnestly. The second poem I am gong to write about is 'On a Portrait of a Deaf Man'. The deaf man in this poem is John Betjeman's father and this poem was written after his death. He's looking at his father's portrait asking God why it happened. Throughout this poem, Betjeman does not write seriously about his father at all. He says he had an 'egg-shaped head' and wore 'loosely fitting clothes' amongst other things. This gives us an almost comical view of his father. ...read more.

Conclusion

His memories of his father are a very personal emotion to him; actual emotion. This poem is probably one of the strongest examples of real emotion in Betjeman's poetry because it is Betjeman's own memories of his father. At the end of the poem, Betjeman doubts his faith in God, 'You ask me to believe You and I only see decay.' Betjeman wonders why God took his father away; this is an emotion that many people can relate to. After loosing someone close to them, people often have reservations about God or the afterlife. Betjeman may be lacking in faith with God but I think he is just angry that his father died and maybe even for the fact that his father was deaf. By looking at both poems it is obvious that Betjeman can write earnestly about love, religion and death and yet his poems still show real faith and sincere emotion. This is a clever device as Betjeman incorporates some humour in his poems and they still are deep and meaningful. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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