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

Discussing the main theme and features of the poem 'Old Man, Old Man' written by U.A. Fanthorpe.

Extracts from this document...


Old Man, Old Man I am going to be discussing the main theme and features of the poem 'Old Man, Old Man' written by U.A. Fanthorpe. The main theme of this poem is the relationship between and elderly man and his daughter. The relationship is exploited through memories that are brought up throughout the poem. The Old Man used to be a person who "did-it-himself" and didn't like to accept help from other people. However the father has become unable to deal with what life throws at him by himself and resents help from his daughter, who seems to be quite glad of his weaker state. I believe this to be because she had always wanted to help her father but he would refuse it and now she can make a difference and help him. The old man has a stereotypical view of women. This is shown during the poem as he doesn't accept help from a woman although it is clear he needs it, he seems to think that a man, or in this case a son is far more able to do things than a daughter, he thinks his daughter is incompetent. ...read more.


This helps us understand how U.A. Fanthorpe must have felt. She says to her father "I can see you" and he replied "only as a cloud." The poem portrays a negative image of the old man, he is a man who "frets" and "rambles" but later on in the poem he has no "power to arouse" and he rambles in his talk. This tells us that old age can be emotionally haunting or that you become an anxious figure just like the old man in this poem. It can also be a distraction from what is important such as your children, "And you wouldn't know" tells us that he has been so distracted from things other than his daughter that he would know longer know much about her. In stanza 3 and 4 there is a more praising tone towards the old man showing his achievements in coping with life, "connoisseur of nuts and bolts" before it shows a more dissatisfied tone from stanzas 5 to 8. As the old man gets older he displays more of his emotions. ...read more.


We see this through Fanthorpe comparing the past and the present times. However she loves his helplessness, whether it is through revenge of mistreating her or more likely because she wants to be able to help him it is uncertain. We see how strong U A Fanthorpe is as a person as she is still willing to help her father after he has ignored her or shut her out. The poem combines a mixture of loneliness, love and bitterness, the last couple of verses expresses a complex emotion of love but it is then ended bitterly and in sorrow by saying "only as a cloud". The poet uses good descriptive imagery to make us feel old after reading it, she also uses good use of quotations to drill the images in our head like the use of "medicine" and "I see you only as a cloud" shows us he is old and doesn't have as good eye sight as he did in his youth. The poem creates a sorrowful and bitter atmosphere too. Andrew Pitt 11Ma English ...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 U A Fanthorpe 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 U A Fanthorpe essays

  1. By Reference to three poems in the 'Tracks' anthology, discuss how Fanthorpe explores the ...

    From the beginning of the poem, it become clear that the interview panel possess a range of prejudices towards the candidate. These appear to have already influenced the panel enough for them to decide that the applicant is not suitable for the job, and it seems as though the interview

  2. In "Not My Best Side" U A Fanthorpe challenges the traditional, stereotypical characters in ...

    St George's expectations are worked when he tells her that she could be, "endangering job prospects" if she does not wish to cooperate. Here, he has taken on a very sexist attitude, and although it seems as if he would like to save the lives of others, once again he

  1. Compare and contrast ‘Hide and Seek’ by Vernon Scannell and ‘Half-past Two’ by U. ...

    This is how the child feels when the realisation of his abandonment occurs to him. 'Yes, here you are. But where are they who sought you?' It is likely that the child feels his peers abandoned him because they do not like him.

  2. Compare the ways 'Old Man, Old Man' and 'Warning' Deal with the theme of ...

    and now he has "lost the hammer", he cannot even do this. The traditional view of eccentricity is portrayed in both poems, however, Joseph also adds an element of freedom, showing her rebellion against taste and sobriety. Her excitement is shown in the language with the excessive use of the

  1. What does Fanthorpe have to say about power and control in 'you will be ...

    holds the whole business up, if he were gone it would collapse, which probably is not true!

  2. How does U.A. Fanthorpe create different personalities within the poems 'Not My Best side' ...

    Fanthorpe proceeds to change the pronoun 'he' to 'you'. This shows how the old man has altered, as well as reflecting the change in the relationship with his daughter. 'He', being less personal, also hints at how the daughter thinks of her father as a young man and her father

  1. W far do you agree with the view that Fanthorpe "offers us new perspectives ...

    The poet illustrates to the reader that although they don't seem to admit to worshipping water they use the water as though it's never-ending in the form of the toilet or "shrine". "Below, a shrine To the godhead. Here they may stand alone "In confessional boxes, or lie full length In his hollow bed, singing."

  2. 'Warning' and 'Old man, Old man' are both about growing old; compare the attitudes ...

    Fanthorpe is recounting her fathers aging. It is said, that as you get older you become less independent, so for him, it is not freedom and liberation it is growing vulnerability. This would probably be the behaviour he would not have chosen for his life, as he has no control over how he lives and what his choices are, and his life is ruled by schedules.

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