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The poem Assisi by Norman MacCaig is a poem I have read which I enjoyed and which I think made an important social comment.

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Introduction

Assisi The poem "Assisi" by Norman MacCaig is a poem I have read which I enjoyed and which I think made an important social comment. The comment is that even today beside the glittering towers of civilisation, great riches exist beside great poverty. "Assisi" starts off with a vividly described beggar slumped against a church in Assisi. A priest is leading a group of rich tourist around the church showing them and explaining to them the magnificence of Giotto's Frescoes. The tourists following the priest are compared to chickens and the priest is shown as a farmer scattering the food for the chickens. The tourists exit the church and give a few Lira to the beggar. ...read more.

Middle

from which sawdust might run" which is very brutal. "slumped" is an example of the poet's use of onomatopoeia to give a fuller description of the events. One of the alliterations used is "clucking contentedly" which the poet uses to create to show how the tourists feel about the attention they are getting. The poet uses an extended metaphor throughout Stanza 3 where he continues to compare the tourists who are following the priest are compared to hens following the farmer as he "scattered the grain of the word" This shows that the real message of Giotto's Frescoes have been devalued because the tourists have ignored the message of Christ by allowing the beggar to reach his current position. ...read more.

Conclusion

The priest is spending time with rich tourists while the beggar was starving outside which is an excellent piece of irony and helps to demonstrate the social comment about religion. The overall tone of the poem is informative by using alliteration, simile, metaphors and onomatopoeia to make his point of the overall hypocricy of religion and how Christians sometimes ignore the actual message of the bible. I liked this poem because of the interesting metaphors and use of onomatopoeia to make the point. The message of the poem also comes through clearly showing us that that the author thinks of how badly religion treats the poor. "Assisi" made a very important social comment in an entertaining way by using all of the techniques above to weave together an valuable and interesting way. By ...read more.

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