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GCSE: Carol Ann Duffy
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- Marked by Teachers essays 1
The use of enjambment builds up a sense of expectation and uncertainty in the reader before delivering the surprising confession that love has a painful side. The language of the poem is quite straightforward and unequivocal but also expresses profound meaning. The title ?Valentine? has connotations of love and joy. It is associated with the customary traditions of mawkish gifts given to one?s significant other. The focus of the poem is belittling these gestures and instead revealing the truth about love.
- Word count: 990
In Mrs. Tilschers Class by Carol Ann Duffy is a poem in which she explores the themes of childhood and the transition to adulthood.
It represents the unpleasant transformation. She personifies the sky and the air as well which is ?feverish? and ?untidy?, indicative of the unrest and turbulence of growing to adolescence. Another noteworthy feature she uses in her language is the caesuras and enjambment. In the first line, for instance, she says ?You can travel up the Blue Nile?, and in the next line, ?with your finger?. The pause adds and element of awe in travelling the Nile. This is abruptly let down by the disclosure that it is simply on a map in a classroom.
- Word count: 1250
It also, however, implies the distinction between ?swim? and ?dance?. The word ?swim? could mean just staying afloat- bare survival. Whereas the word dance has connotations of joy and pleasure. The phrase ?we are not free? shows that the dolphins are trapped and are swimming, not dancing. The phrase ?we are in our element but we are not free? creates a paradox between being in one?s ?element?, which is usually considered a place where one is comfortable but also implies the physical element of water, and yet being constrained.
- Word count: 667