poems as ‘Valentine’ first appears to be very cliché and predictable but it turns out to be another original take on love.Each poem also differs in the kind of voice used however; both are the poet’s own take on love. ‘Valentine’ is written in first person narrative which allows us to relate to and understand the poem whereas ‘Vultures’ is written in third person narrative which allows us to obtain an outside view on the situation in the poem which we simply could not relate to ourselves. Although they differ in narrative styles, each style works well for us to understand what is going on in the poem.The contrast between love and hate in ‘Vultures’ is a very conceptual way for Achebe to convey his idea. He talks us through the daily events of three love-struck characters who are involved in, what the majority of people today see as, uncivilizedacts which could disturb and horrify many. These acts include vultures ‘gorging’ on animal carcasses, a woman falling asleep in a ‘charnel house’ and a Belsen Commandant returning home with chocolates for his ‘tender’ offspring. Not only do these images come across as horrifying but the language used is truly perfect for getting Achebe’s idea across. Using the very ‘gorging’ allows us to see an aggressive act involving two lovers. The use of the ‘charnel house’ within the poem is very significant as it shows the woman in total bliss despite being surrounded by corpses. The description of ‘human roast clinging rebelliously’ to the Belsen commandant turns ones stomach as a shocking contrast is made with the word ‘tender’ which shows us true love and affection with in such an ‘evil’ individual. ‘Valentine’ is nowhere near as unusual as the other poem but it also allows us to understand an unusual take on love. This poem is more about an appropriate, non-cliché gift for Valentine’s Day so Duffy talks about giving her lover an onion. The onion is more appropriate than a ‘stain heart’ or a ‘red rose’ because the characteristics of an onion such as it’s many layers and it’s similarity to the ‘moon’ which ‘promises light’, can be compared to her relationship so she uses the onion as an extended metaphor to represent love. Both poems are obviously quite different but in both poems we are simply being shown love in different places.In a like manner, both poems share the way in which they are written. The form of both poems is free verse which establishes a conversational quality which helps us to understand the message of both poems. The only real difference is that ‘Vultures’ has many lines of varying length whereas ‘Valentine’ has many isolated lines for emphasis such as ‘Here’ and ‘Take it’.A huge difference in the two poems however, is the tone. ‘Vultures’ has a very sharp tone which is hard-hitting and with words like ‘telescopic’ and the use of phrases like ‘human roast clinging rebelliously’ the mood becomes cold, cynical and eerie. Affection is introduced for a short period of time in the poem when the Belsen commandant brings home chocolates for his ‘tender’ offspring, but even here the use of horrifying behaviour is still being used, ‘the human roast clinging rebelliously to his nostrils’, so despite the affection of the father to his daughter Achebe uses a paradoxical image to show that the man can never be cleanse himself of his immoral acts. This is very unlike ‘Valentine’ as it is affectionate throughout. Words such as ‘promise’, ‘faithful’ and ‘possessive’ make the poem seem positive even though at some points blunt, single words make the poem seem less loving like ‘here’ and ‘lethal’. The tone in these poems directly affects the mood. The tone in ‘Vultures’ is made up of eeriness therefore the mood is dramatic and dark which is ironic as it is a love poem. ‘Valentine’ has a positive, comforting mood which is appropriate for the given theme.In each poem a range of techniques are employed to appeal to us and to make us really think about the content of the poems. Both poems use strong metaphors, for example Achebe describes an ogre’s tiny glow-worm tenderness and how ever gem is ‘lodged with the perpetuity of evil’. These metaphors allow us to truly understand Achebe’s concept of love and hate being present together. The use of Duffy’s extended metaphor in ‘Valentine’ also allows us to understand her thoughtfulness within her relationship, ‘It’s fierce kiss, possessive and faithful, as we are’. Personifications in the poems such as ‘how love will pick a corner’ lets us see the characteristics of love alive and with power which makes the poem much more effective. In ‘Vultures’ Achebe has also wittingly appealed to our sense of smell, ‘fumes of human roast’, this allows us to grasp the disgusting situation we are being informed of. Both poets give us direct images to allow us to understand their ideas of love. In ‘Vultures’ we conjure up disturbing images like when Achebe describes vultures ‘gorging’ on carcasses and a young woman in a ‘charnel house’ for her lover, these images create an almost nauseating and repulsive idea of love. Then however, the poet creates the idea of the Belsen commandant ‘bringing chocolates home to his tender offspring’ which allows us to contrast and realise that even the most grotesque, cynical creatures are capable of loving and this successfully makes us see love as we never have before. In ‘Valentine’ Duffy gives us a simile of an onion as the moon, promising light for a lover and how the pattern on the onion is like an engagement ring. The two poems in question also share a lack of rhythm and rhyme schemes and this is due to the conversation manner in which they are written.Achebe has successfully created a poem using an over analytical approach that allows us to see compassion and cruelty exist harmoniously. His unique take on a popular theme is, like Duffy’s take, refreshing to read as it opens our eyes to love in different places. Duffy’s poem allows us to see a meaningful analysis of a strong relationship. I personally prefer ‘Vultures’ as it is one of the most original and refreshing pieces I have ever read and I think it’s message is well though out and very interesting. I enjoyed studying poems based on love and I am pleased to know that love will continue to be an important topic in poetry as it is universally recognised.