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Select two poems about 'Relationships' Compare the poets' version of the relationships

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Introduction

Select two poems about 'Relationships' Compare the poets' version of the relationships The two poems that I wish to compare are both about relationships, "Long distance" by Tony Harrison and "My grandmother" by Elizabeth Jennings. Both are about family and grief which they explore through the theme of death. The speaker of the poems talks about the loss of a relationship that had once existed. "Long distance" has a much closer relationship theme than "My grandmother". Long distance focuses on love that does not end with death and it continues however "My grandmother" focuses on the miss of love that could have been there. Both of the two poems are about the lack of acceptance and memory. In "Long Distance" the father who kept the dead wife's memory so alive: 'Still went to renew her transport pass. In "My grandmother" the rejection of the grandchild is also perhaps considered as a memory however as regret: 'I remember how I once refused'. ...read more.

Middle

He was overwhelmed by her death but wanted to believe she was still with him in his heart and around him: 'he knew she'd just popped out to the tea'. The father is forced to play a role of moving on and he lives in fear of criticism even from his son: 'my blight of disbelief'. The father does not want his son to find out he has not got over his wife's death. "My grandmother" uses more imagery than "Long distance". There are images of furniture which becomes like a metaphor. The furniture's have no energy, they are cold, old solid objects and this in some ways reflects the grandmother's personality. These objects take her away from the people who can actually give back love. The imagery of her dying we can picture that she will not be surrounded by people but the things she loved, 'the antiques'. ...read more.

Conclusion

"My grandmother" the title of the poem is only the name given to her, but not as the role she should have played in the poet's life and the relationship that should have been there, but which the poet regrets. "Long distance" is a metaphor that is being used as the title of the poem. The people who have died are actually gone however it's not the end and the relationship that is going on is a distant relationship which they shall never see each of them again. 'the disconnected number I still call' is ambiguous, the poet either rings the father not realizing he's dead, or rings to talk but he's not there. Both poems look at the remembrance deeply "long distance" the memory of them in his mind 'my new black leather phone book there's your name' and in "My grandmother" the grief the poet did not have over her death but the memory of 'things she never used but needed', the antiques. English - Best words Karthika Shanthakunalan 11S ...read more.

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