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Compare and contrast the two poems: 'Turkeys Observed' - (Seamus Heaney), and 'View of a Pig' - (Ted Hughes).

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Hannah Williams 10D Poetry Essay 'Turkeys Observed' - Seamus Heaney 'View of a Pig' - Ted Hughes Compare and contrast the two poems: 'Turkeys Observed' - (Seamus Heaney), and 'View of a Pig' - (Ted Hughes). In the two poems - 'Turkeys Observed' and 'View of a Pig', the titles are very similar. ''View'' and ''Observed'' - to examine, and to watch. This gives the reader the impression that the poets were very attentive to the detail of the animals - and so made the poem more interesting. The main comparison between the two poems is that they are both about animals. One is about a ''Pig'' and the other about a ''Turkey''. Also they are similar because both animals are dead - this makes us feel pity for them, though Hughes does not seem to: ''I thumped it without feeling remorse''. The content of the poems contrast because one of them pity's the dead animal - Heaney: ''One observes them, one expects them; Blue-breasted in their indifferent mortuary''. And the other disrespects it and doesn't care - Hughes: ''It was just too dead. Just so much a poundage of lard and pork.'' There is also great contrast at the beginning of the poems in the first verse. Hughes mentions ''the pig'' in the very first line. ...read more.


Also, Heaney addresses the animal with respected - he calls the turkey 'him' and 'his' rather than 'it', as Hughes does. This is to give the effect that Heaney shows great admiration towards the creature, and that it is worth pity and respect. The styles of both poems are similar. Neither of them rhymes - which gives the impression that the poets have no definite control over their thoughts and feelings. Also the structure is the same. They both have four lines to each verse - it has a specific pattern. They both also have a section of narrative in them, but what they are about differs. Heaney tells of his memories of when the turkey was alive, and that he once ''complained extravagantly'' in an ''overture of gobbles''. He ''lorded it on the claw-flecked mud''. The use of onomatopoeia on 'gobbles' reminds us that the turkey did once have life in it, and could think for itself. When remembering the mud the turkey walked on, he goes into extreme detail, to show us that he cared as he paid great attention to a common part of the turkeys' life. Hughes also included some narrative in his poem, and like Heaney, concentrates on when the pig was alive. ...read more.


It leaves us in wonder. Heaney on the other hand is more straightforward about his feelings towards the turkey. He tells us of the ''bleak Christmas dazzle''. He uses opposite words here to give it the effect that he is saddened at the thought of a turkey being killed for someone to eat. Also he changes his use of words. At the start of the poem he says 'one', but now he makes it more personal, and says 'I'. Heaney tells us how the turkey ended up: ''The proud wings snapped, the tail-fan stripped down to a shameful rudder''. This last sentence is harsh for something so beautiful. Also there are a lot of 's' sounds - 'snapped', 'stripped' and 'shameful'. This makes it sound very evil and ruthless. Heaney has made it sound like this to show his strong feelings towards the turkey, and to make us have sympathy for it. In conclusion I feel that both poems are successful at making the reader pity the dead animal, but they do it in very different and interesting ways. The poets use effective techniques like similes, and repetition to highlight certain points that they want to stand out and draw our attention to. I have no particular poem that I prefer and like better - they are both different, but both very good and effective. ...read more.

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