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Storm on the Island and Patrolling Barnegeat Comparison

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19.9.09 Compare and Contrast How Nature is presented in the two poems, 'Storm on the Island' and 'Patrolling Barnegat' In the poem 'Strom on the Island' by Seamus Heaney the title immediately stands out. It is blunt and to the point. Heaney was born in Northern Ireland 1939. The poem is about a storm on an island, but because there is no 'The' or 'A' at the start of the title, there is a sense that Heaney is not writing about one storm in particular, but about many similar storms. It seems as if it is an experience that he is used to. ...read more.


There is also an oxymoron 'Exploding comfortably' this conveys the idea that they are dangerous but they are at a safe enough distance away to be unthreatening. Similarly, in the poem 'Patrolling Barnegat': by Walt Whitman. The poem is set on a beach on a stormy night. Someone is walking alone along the beach. Once again the title, Patrolling gives the impression of a military operation. The poem is written in the present tense. This gives us a sense of immediacy: the events are being described to us moment by moment and we feel the uncertainty of the poet. This adds to the drama- we don't know what is going to happen. ...read more.


This savage Trinity, however, is Hellish (echoes 'demoniac laughter' from the previous line). Both poems are from a personal viewpoint. Both poems are about a storm at sea. Yet Whitman is Patrolling the beach, almost participating in the storm, while Heaney is prepared, protected in his house. Heaney uses a simile - 'Spits like a tamed cat turned savage' - to describe the wild sea; Whitman uses images that are even more menacing, like 'Shouts of demoniac laughter'. Heaney describes the wind attacking - 'We are bombarded by the empty air'. Whitman uses another military image - 'Watchful and firm advancing' - to describe the force of the wind. Both images portray the wind as the enemy. ?? ?? ?? ?? - 1 - ...read more.

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