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Comment on the experiences portrayed in the poems studied. You should refer to language and poetic techniques. 'Sonny's Lettah' by Linton Kwesi Johnson who is West Indian and 'Telephone Conversation by Wole Soyinka.

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Introduction

Comment on the experiences portrayed in the poems studied. You should refer to language and poetic techniques. The poems I have studied are 'Sonny's Lettah' by Linton Kwesi Johnson who is West Indian and 'Telephone Conversation by Wole Soyinka. The theme of both of the poems is based on racism. The language used in both of the poems is Standard English, dialect, onomatopoeia and symbolic. Johnson's poem is about a man writing a letter to his mother to inform her about the racist attack on his brother and himself. He describes how they ended up in prison. Telephone conversation is about a West African, who finds it difficult to find a house for rent. While he is trying to talk to a landlady to rent her house, over the telephone, finds that the conversation changes to his background and colour, which is effectively racism. ...read more.

Middle

Red booth, red-box and red double-tiered, symbolise of racism. It also symbolises that the person is different from other, and treated as an alien from out of space. Both of the poems make use of rhythm. In Sonny's Lettah the rhythm is slower at the start and speeds up in the middle and slows down again at the end. The rhythm gets faster as the fight between the police and the man starts. For example: "Dem tump' im in' im belly an' it turn to jelly" "Dem lick' im pon' im back an' im rib get pop" The action of fight creates a visual picture and sound effects. The rhythm in Telephone conversation is slower at the start and gets faster at the end. Rhyme is used in Sonny's Lettah but not in Telephone conversation. In Sonny's Lettah the use of rhyming words make the poem more interesting to read. ...read more.

Conclusion

Telephone Conversation is written in the form of telephone conversation. Racism creates violence, destroys life on both sides, not only the victim but the suspect too. In Sonny's Lettah the lives are destroyed. The policeman suspected of racist attack, Sonny the victim says: "an crash an dead" and "charge mi fi murder" The example "an crash an dead" shows that the suspect who created the fight died and he probably had wife and children and they will now have no man to bring the money in the house and protect them. Both of the poems used symbolic and standard language, rhythm and repetition. Also the theme for both of the poems is the same which is racism. One is physical and the other one is verbal racism. I prefer poem number one, which is Sonny's Lettah because the various techniques used by the writer, for example: onomatopoeia, repetition and rhythm. I like this poem because the way the writer shows rhythm of the fight. Also the language makes it more interesting and challenging to understand it. ...read more.

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