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Looking at Two Poems, Compare Carol Anne Duffy's Exploration of the Theme of Isolation.

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Introduction

Looking at Two Poems, Compare Carol Anne Duffy's Exploration of the Theme of Isolation Carol Anne Duffy is probably one of Britain's more famous poets at the present time. Her poems are easy to read, straight forward, fairly simple and many people can relate to the things she writes about; love, loneliness and isolation to name a few. Two of her more famous poems, "War Photographer" and "Stealing" both deal with isolation, but in different ways. "War Photographer" is about a man who "has a job to do" and who sees things that most wouldn't. The other is about a thief who's "sick of the world" and probably does not have any friends. The first verse of "War Photographer" immediately gives the impression that this man is alone. "In his darkroom he is finally alone" to develop his pictures after taking them in faraway, worn torn worlds; "Belfast. Beirut. Phnom Penh". "Stealing" also starts in a way that can easily give the impression that this person is alone and done or seen things that you shouldn't. ...read more.

Middle

On the other hand, the thief in "Stealing" takes the view that you are "better off than giving in, not taking what you want." And feels that "part of the thrill [of stealing the snowman] was knowing the children would cry in the morning. Life's tough." This gives the impression that the thief enjoys the suffering of others and has probably led a very hard life himself. The third verse in "War Photographer" and the last three in "Stealing" further demonstrate differences between the two characters. As "a stranger's features faintly start to twist before his eyes" the war photographer "remembers the cries of this man's wife, how he sought approval to do what someone must" and took the picture that he now has before him. However, the thief in "Stealing" takes a far more relaxed attitude towards things; "sometimes I steal things I don't need." Then tries to give some sort of twisted meaning to what he does by giving himself a mental script; "I sigh like this - Aah." ...read more.

Conclusion

showing that the thief in "Stealing" does not feel like he's connected with the main stream, and feels that nobody understands him, or will take the time to understand him because he's different from everybody else. Then, in "War Photographer" as the photographer is leaving England "he stares impassively at where he earns his living and they do not care." Meaning that he also believes that nobody cares what about what he's had to go through and what he's had to do, and that they probably wouldn't understand his need to do what he does when he shows them pictures of what the world outside their homes is really like. So, although the two poems are very different in many different ways; how they are written, whom they are about, what the characters do and who they are... they are actually both very similar in the theme of isolation, because both poems are about two people who feel and who are alone and isolated from other people by what they do. Scott Sinfield ...read more.

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