Explore how the poet presents his thoughts and feelings about what is happening in the world around him in One World Down the Drain

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Explore how the poet presents his thoughts and feelings about what is happening in the world around him in “One World Down the Drain”

Simon Rae’s “One World Down the Drain” attempts to raise the awareness over the issue of pollution in the world, and the need to take responsibility. Throughout the poem a casual tone is maintained as a blithe statement to attract the reader’s attention and maintain interest, as well as the constant use of monosyllabic words to show the underlying frustration of the poet to the reader.

The title of the poem “One World Drown the Drain” was used by the poet in order to represent the risk of the world going “down the drain”, which the audience can link to the problem of pollution and rising sea levels. The title also makes use the words “down the drain” as a metaphor for people not realising that the problem of pollution is likely to affect them in the future, and is not limited to the countries stated throughout the poem.

The poem opens with the casual statement:

        “It’s goodbye half of Egypt,

         The Maldives take a dive,

         And not much more of Bangladesh,

         Looks likely to survive.”,

Demonstrating the use of blithe statements where the poet chooses to use a casual tone in order to draw the reader in, presenting the opening stanza with a similar tone to a song in order to create a positive effect on the reader and encourage them to think about the statements. The locations mentioned have been selected by the poet due to the fact that currently they are the most risk from the effect of rising sea levels due to pollution, and their choice to be used in the opening stanza of the poem is used to give a message to the audience of the immanency of the dangers. However the dangers are not explicitly stated yet in order to encourage the reader to continue thinking over this issue and as a form of drawing the reader in further. The reference to the countries under threat, such as “It’s goodbye to Egypt” present the countries as a tourist location rather than actual places that are inhabited, used by the poet as a form of criticism for consumerism, where the target audience of the poem is not concerned about pollution.

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The poet attempts to establish the negativity of the issue of pollution by bringing the topic to the audience’s own area, suggesting that “Europe too will alter”, in order to raise awareness that the issue is going to affect the audience and not just the countries which are already at risk. The poet attempts to emphasise the importance of the choices that people make by using irony, suggesting to “book flights to Venice now”, despite flight being one of the most polluting forms of transport. The poet ends the stanza with “Great city. Pity. Ciao”, intending to imitate the ...

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