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

comparison of the poems: "The sick equation" and "Long distance"

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Poetry coursework Comparison of the poems: The Sick Equation and Long Distance. "The Sick Equation", is a poem which portrays a young boy's struggle to cope with the adult world, and the long-term effects his parents' quarrelling had on him. The poem "Long Distance" also shows the problems a young boy faces throughout life, which involve his parents and the overall concept of growing up. They are both caught in the middle of their troubled family lives and so later on, they both show very unusual responses due to their affected ideologies and adapted mentality. The young boys are both highly influenced by the incorrect attitude of their parents. They are both deprived of the real world and try to be uninvolved in difficult issues due to their insecurities and cowed attitudes. "Long Distance" starts off to talk about the widowed father's reaction to the loss of his beloved wife. The poet shows us how his father could not come to terms with his mother's death and seemed to be in a state of denial. His father managed to cope with the situation by pretending that she had not died at all, just "popped out to get the tea". We know the father is completely sane and aware of his wife's death because "he clears away her things to look alone", so it is about his resolve to still keep her alive in his mind, by doing all the mundane things that he must have been doing for the many years they were married. ...read more.

Middle

The two poets appear a bit unemotional and spiritless; they do not really talk about their own feelings, yet towards the end of the poems we find out how badly they are actually hurt and how deeply they are affected. Each poem finishes with a twist which makes things much clearer to us. For example in "Long Distance", just when you think you know what the writer is trying to tell you, just when you think you can empathise with him; his love for his father...and his torment at watching his father everyday carrying on as if his wife was still alive, the poem jolts at you. The last verse tells you that the poem was never about the father at all. The father is dead and long gone too...It's about the writer and his own struggle to accept the finality of his parents' death, and his own refusal to see them as "disconnected" from his life. He has even entered their telephone number in his "new black leather phone book" as if his parents were still alive. The irony is only displayed in the last stanza; while we felt that Harrison thought it was weird that his father was acting in that way, he turns out to do the exact same. The word "disconnected" emphasizes on how distant Harrison and his parents have become. ...read more.

Conclusion

to accept the loss of his parents, and Patten tries to come to terms with his parents' mistakes and his own wrong conclusions. The moods of the two poems are also very similar; they both have a very sorrowful and saddening moods and similar themes. The conversational language which is used also reflects on the poets' similar backgrounds; they both come from a working-class, Christian family. After reading each poem, you can clearly see the bitterness, frustration and sorrow coming from each poet; you can clearly see things from their point of view and completely empathize and sympathize with them. Nevertheless, there are also vast differences between the two poems; the most important is the moral or hidden message of each poem. It is not difficult to pick out the main point of each poem as each of the poems reflects the titles. "The Sick Equation" clearly refers to Brian Patten's first belief of the concept of love, ("one and one stayed one and one") and "Long Distance" implies the parting of people at death and the ever-lasting distance between the loved and the lost. It is ironic that the title of each poem which was the idea they started off with was proven to be wrong by the poets themselves. At the ending verse of his poem, Patten confirms "in their (his parents) sick equation not stay caught" and Harrison also states that "the disconnected number I (he) still calls". ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Love Poetry section.

Found what you're looking for?

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

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 GCSE Love Poetry essays

  1. three Tony Harrison poems

    In 'Book Ends' the poet visualises his father's love for his dead mother with the strong language that is used to show sorrow and grief, and also by his father's behaviour, "what the fuck to put", "Shocked into sleeplessness".

  2. Compare the poems "Long distance" and "My Grandmother."

    Furthermore, it is evident that the two main characters of the poems, the son and granddaughter, are both emotionally detached from the deceased, that they attempt to come to terms with. In My Grandmother" the grandmother "kept an antique shop - or it kept her."

  1. A Comparison Between the poems ‘Cousin Kate’ and ‘Ballad’

    The protagonist talks of how she regrets her actions 'He lured me to his palace home Woe's me to joy thereof' (Lines 9 and 10) As the poem goes on, the protagonist talks of her antagonist. The mood turns from a regretful one to one of hostility and enmity.

  2. Love Poetry

    In the second stanza, the boy's words of endearment to the girl are 'little slag' and this is pejorative and derogatory language, which nobody would expect to be used as words of endearment by anybody. Andrew Marvell uses seventeenth century language such as 'thou', 'thine', 'thy' and so on.

  1. Explain the arguments used by the poets to make use of time

    Herrick could be inferring to the fact that at the time, life expectancy was short, and therefore, he is telling all virgins of any kind to live life to the fullest before it is too late. Marvell begins to turn to he mistress's natural beauty.

  2. Analyse an Compare the themes of loss and isolation in Long Distance (Harrison), The ...

    Tony Harrison on the other hand went through a different sort of life he went through a 'The material of much of his poetry is provided by the memories of his working-class childhood. His poems and translations show a powerful command of rhyme and an expert adaptation of colloquial speech.'

  1. 'The Sick Equation' - Brian Pattern

    In line six he refers back to the equation - 'I learned that one and one stayed one and one'. This has a lot of effect because it refers back to the equation which is an extended metaphor. Also, line four is ironic and sarcastic - 'But at home, sweet home, that sum was open to dispute'.

  2. Compare what McAuley and Patten suggest about love in The Seduction and Wound Cream

    This misleads people and they feel betrayed from the ?media? because they cannot have that ?fairytale? relationship as reality is much more different. This misguide effects people a lot because they?ve had the mentality about these gender roles and ?happily ever afters? because since birth to their pre-teen years they?ve

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