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ENGLISH LITERATURE - Comparative Essay

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Introduction

Compare how relationships are presented in mother any distance by Simon Armitage with one poem by Carol Ann Duffy and 2 poems from the pre 1914 poetry bank A relationship is a particular type of connection existing between blood related, married people and/or people who have dealings with each other. "Mother any distance" is a poem written by Simon Armitage. In the poem the relationship displayed by the writer is of a mother and son relationship. The years are unreeling between mother and son but the bond will never be broken. Anne Hathaway by Carol Anne Duffy shows the relationship between the famous couple of Anne Hathaway (who was a real woman) and her husband Shakespeare. This relationship is of a marriage one unlike in "Mother any distance." However, the poet in many ways explores a similar idea. "Sonnet 130" written by Shakespeare also shows a relationship however without the use of love poetry. My last Dutchess is a poem written by Robert Browning and in this poem relationship is also portrayed, however, what we are presented with initially does not tell the whole truth. ...read more.

Middle

The lines in this poem are written in iambic pentameter meaning the syllables in each line amount to 10. Iambic pentameter is the closet form of poetry to natural speech. This allows the reader to relate to the poem which is more clearly portrayed to them. This also gives the speaker a realistic voice. Duffy also uses enjambment to allow the sentences of the poem to end in the same place as regular line-breaks. In other terms punctuation is absent at the end of a line. Enjambment is one way of creating audible interest as it allows the flow of reading. This creates a conversational tone to the poem. This device allows the poem to carry a realistic voice, also making the poem more personal, allowing the reader to relate to the narrator and their feelings. Furthermore, the last two lines in the poem rhyme. This makes sure the reader remembers these last two lines as emphasis of their love is created. There is also at the end of line 12 a hyphen. These creates a pause which enables the reader to take in what is being said and absorb how much she misses her 'living laughing love'. ...read more.

Conclusion

While Duffy employs literary and erotic imagery to demonstrate the height of their love, 'his touch a verb dancing in the centre' of Hathaway's 'noun', Shakespeare specifically shuns literary conventions. His mistress has neither snow white skin nor rosy red cheeks. Yet as the poem continues our perception of the relationship changes because we learn that even though this woman's voice is not a 'pleasing' musical sound, and even more unpleasantly honest, she has breath that 'reeks', she is a real woman and therefore his love for her is also real. The poet refuses to belie her with 'false compare'. Though the poem is a sonnet, it does not conform in content to the Elizabethan tradition, and the woman is a believable person instead of an objectified work of beauty. The Duke dealt with his problem by calmly disposing of his wife, the chilling alliteration of 'all smiles stopped together' reinforcing his complete lack of love. In both the sonnets we see loving relationships portrayed, Shakespeare offering a more truthful love and Duffy offering an alternative truth for Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway. Finally, in Armitage's poem, we see a relationship where a mother and son are portrayed as never splitting up. ...read more.

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