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In the Park - oral analysis.

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In the Park - Oral Analysis Introduction - Poet: Anne "In the Park" - a simple but dramatic poem about an unnamed woman's deprivation of motherhood. Today Michael and I will be presenting to the class our interpretation of Gwen Harwood's poem "In the Park." However before we read the poem, I will briefly explain Gwen Harwood's life and works. Gwen Harwood was an Australian poet who was dynamic, independent and well aware of her own worth. She was born in Brisbane 1920. She was raised by a close and loving family that consisted of strong women, Gwen's grandmother maintained her independence by earning her own living until she was 80 and her mother was a feminist who was involved in community issues. It was also Gwen's grandmother who first introduced her to poetry by reciting poems to Gwen and giving dramatic performance from sections of the Old Testament. Her father played the piano and violin and thus music played an important and lively part in the family's life. Both Gwen and her younger brother were given piano lessons and thus originally Gwen was inspired to become a musician. But feeling that she would never succeed in this field, Gwen after completing her secondary education used her musical talents and became a music teacher and an organist at the All Saints Church of England in Brisbane. In was during these years that she became actively involved in religion and her interest in philosophy started. ...read more.


This is because "In the park' indicates the setting as well as echoes the bland and isolating existence of suburban life. During the day parks are very boring places. There are usually only visited by mothers who are exhausted from doing the repetitive daily chores but are still forced to take care of their children by taking them to the park and play. These women, wives and mothers do not have much choice. As it is what society expects them to do. (Literary Devices) Pathos, cliches, imagery and irony are the some of the figurative language and literary devices in the poem utilized by Harwood to relay the messages evident in the poem to the audience. Pathos, which is the feeling of pity and sorrow, evoked by tragedy is evident in the quote "Someone she once loved passes by - too late." This is because love is a very emotional term that stirs many and varying feelings for the audience. Especially seeing as the woman's love is "passing by too late." Many readers can relate to this feeling due to the love that has also passed by for them. This quote ignites one's feeling of loneliness, sadness and regret. Another illustration of pathos is the controversial last line, "They have eaten me alive." The mother is suggesting defeat and more devastatingly the loss of hope. Many readers find this ending to be very emotional as it makes them experience her sadness by her allusion to be eaten alive. ...read more.


I couldn't understand the meanings of the majority of the words however what caught my attention was the powerful ending. When she says, 'They have eaten me alive," she is really making a compelling statement that her children have devoured her, overtaken her as an individual free to love and laugh, and free to live. However initially the reason why I was drawn into studying "In the Park" is because over the holidays when I was reading some of the poetry in Line to Times I developed a liking towards a few of Gwen Harwood's other works. I feel and believe that many of the issues of motherhood and feminism that Gwen Harwood cleverly incorporates into her works are effectively and still hold true back then and in today's society. An example for "In the Park" is how it portrays a social issue surrounding the deprivation of motherhood. The fact that this poem reflected our society's expectation and attitude to domestic life. Where women and mothers should be happy simply by looking after children and doing the daily chores really appealed to me. As well as this I liked how Gwen Harwood in 'In the Park," alternates the tone used. The black humour felt by me and other readers when the two ex-lovers unexpectedly meet add to the dramatic quality of the poem. So generally I have to saw the issues, the powerful ending and varying tone employed in "In the Park," were what drew me into liking and then studying the poem. Michael: Why poem appeals to me Conclusion ...read more.

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