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

Critical Analysis- Praise Song for my Mother by Grace Nichols

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

This poem is a lyrical ballad written with a simple rhyme scheme of a-b-c. ab-c. The poem, as the name suggests is a song where the poet is rejoicing her relationship with her mother by making use of simple but powerful imagery. It is important to note that unlike the commemorative poems that are usually written by Western writers, "Praise for My Mother" does not have a requiem like elegiac mood. The overall tone of the poem is pleasant. "Praise Song" is a panegyric on the writer's mother. in which she celebrates a woman who gave her both roots to grow from and wings to fly with. Writing about her own mother, Nichols once commented that she was a '... warm, intelligent, loving woman who was full of stories, anecdotes and songs from her own childhood. People loved being around her and I can't remember a single day when our home wasn't visited by some friend, neighbour or relative who had dropped in "just fuh [sic] minute" but ended up staying hours.' ...read more.

Middle

Her mother used to give piano lessons. The first 8 years of her life that she spent in a village left an imprint on her that shows in the poem as well; the rhythm of music and the beat of pan, the call of the fisherman and the fruit vendor, the odour of mud and salt when she went crab hunting ("the crab's leg"), the whole of the morning sky, the whole of the evening sky, ("sunrise" and "moon's eye"). The poem is also repetitive, 'replenishing replenishing'. The poet may have opted for this because it brings a sense of childhood as a young child would repeat words. Nichols wants to use this effect because the repetitive content relates to a child's attitude, which will then recall the memories Nichols had of her mother when she was a child. Food is a very important part of Caribbean culture and tradition. ...read more.

Conclusion

This is why throughout the poems she applies her own dialect of Creole, which is the official dialect of the Caribbean. She also uses Creole because she feels as though she should preserve it. She maintains that her Caribbean language is 'genuinely exciting' and that Creole's aspects are very vivid which concludes her to believe that there is no equivalent in the English language. Nichols has successfully carved a niche for her culture and poetry in the existing canon of complex poets and poetry by writing in a laymen's register. This is a poetry that everyone can understand and read. This is a poetry that everyone can identify with. This is the poetry the Nichols has written for her countrymen, for her mother, for her roots- it is a tribute to her roots back at home. We get a clear sense of this in 'Praise Song for My Mother', in which she talks of a mother who is 'deep and bold and fathoming' and who 'replenishes' her whenever she needs comfort. ...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 Other Poets section.

Found what you're looking for?

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

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

4 star(s)

There are some good points made in this essay and contextual factors are also considered. The point and the evidence are normally secure but the explanations need to be developed to justify the interpretations that are being made.

4 Stars

Marked by teacher Laura Gater 04/07/2013

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 Other Poets essays

  1. Analysis of "Elegy for my father's father".

    The persona however jumps back into the negative comments. When he was old he had nothing to do except sit in his curved chair all day the kitchen fire. Perhaps a sense of pity for him. His family watched him waste time he could have made so much out of.

  2. Emily Bronte-Cold in the Earth Critical Analysis

    This is an extremely important biographical reference to her own life; as well as a personification. Most of the poems written by Emily Bronte were based around the world that she created with her siblings. This world was called Gondal.

  1. Write a close analysis of Penelope Explain how Duffy creates the female voice and ...

    With her new found creative power she warns that her needle is a weapon, when her husband arrives Penelope merely gets on with her life, she is no longer concerned, unlike Mrs Midas who ends her poem longing for her husband's 'touch' Penelope aims 'surely at the needle's eye once more'.

  2. Notes on "Elegy For My Father's Father".

    active time in life ? active verbs ?slice?/?build? ? Prime stage for him Author is praising the grandfather for his skill and commitment ? Adds a slight more positive tone for this section of the poem Linked to summer ? A stage in life where we are most active Contrasts

  1. Analysis of Oscar Wildes poem, The Ballad of the Reading Gaol.

    The man had killed a man, but had come to terms with his doom. Also the man was being slowly led towards the gallows but was wearing a jaunty "cricket cap" and his step was "light and gay". The only thing that betrayed his feelings were his "wistful" eyes.

  2. In The Trees Are Down poet Charlotte Mew seems to be using the trees ...

    seasons (literally and figuratively), and for half her life, she has witnessed them do so, and their being cut down by men who do not understand their purpose (not just for beauty, but for shelter for the ?the small creeping creatures in the earth?), men who have cut them down

  1. Baxter's "Elegy for my Father's Father" :poetry analysis

    Baxter uses unusual syntax throughout the poem. It seems as if the lines are displaced and interchanged. The displacement of lines also highlights certain things, such as the height of what he is building, (which although it sounds like tilling a farm may in fact be a house that he

  2. Critical Analysis on 'Do not go gentle into that good night' by Dylan Thomas

    This personal connection evokes a lot of emotion, as there are sentimental reasons as to why he should fight death. Thomas quickly uses this emotional experience to demonstrate the importance of relationships and family, and their value to individuals. However, there is more exploration of life itself in this poem as much as it is about death.

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