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Brooklyn Cop by Norman MacCaig. The poem is about a cop who works in Brooklyn, New York which is known to be a rather violent society, thus making the job of a cop there even tougher.

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Introduction

"BROOKLYN COP" ESSAY In class we have been reading a provocative, emotional and in-sightful poem set in modern day times. The poem is about a cop who works in Brooklyn, New York which is known to be a rather violent society, thus making the job of a cop there even tougher than being a cop anywhere else. The fact that every day working is a life threatening situation for him is continual throughout the poem, as is the fierce, tough and scary characteristics of this Brooklyn cop. The poet, Norman MacCaig, expresses the subject's personality and gradually reveals this which allows the reader a greater appreciation. I think this poem is very effective and shows how the cop deals with his work and his home life. Firstly, in the verse one MacCaig begins with a simile. This is used in an effective way to compare a cop with a gorilla which clearly sends across the message that the cop is big built, but he also adds a bit of humour in this part of the poem - making out that the cop is tougher than a gorilla. ...read more.

Middle

Furthermore MacCaig describes the violent behaviour out on the streets of Brooklyn. "Thin tissue over violence" Clearly this metaphor shows that there is a very fragile layer between safety and crime in the streets and that it lurks just below the surface. By using a tissue as an example to show how precarious this layer is. It also helps to clarify violence can erupt at any moment and the cop has to be on a constant state of alert. Also, concluding verse one is a phrase in which MacCaig shows that the cop has a different side to him when he is at home around the people he loves and cares for and when he is on his line of duty. "Hiya honey, is no clich�" Evidently, this gives us an insight into the cop's home life. It oozes affection and shows the love he has for his wife. The poem reveals the danger his wife also faces, the fear of her husband not returning home safely at night. ...read more.

Conclusion

The poet utilises parenthesis during this verse to fully illustrate this point. "Whose home is a place he might, this time, never get back to?" Apart from the fact that he is perceived as an animal on the job, he goes into more depth and reveals the cop's final emotion before the poem is brought to a close. The reader is given a feeling of sadness because everyday he is in danger and his tragic death could affect the rest of his family. The last verse consists of only two lines and finishes with a question and asks the reader if they would consider enrolling in his line of work. In conclusion, "Brooklyn Cop" by Norman MacCaig has displayed a varied amount of emotion and this escalates to the point where he is turning dangerous and his responsibilities are being jeopardised. At the beginning of the poem the cop is made laughable through the comparison to a wild animal, but as the poem ends the reader begins to feel sympathy for him as his safety and the risk of losing his family is a daily fear. It is MacCaig's successful use of imagery that makes the poem alive. ...read more.

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