For Heidi With Blue Hair Commentary

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“For Heidi With Blue Hair” commentary

        “For Heidi With Blue Hair” is a poem written by Fleur Adcock, during the 1980s. The poem presents the readers with a central image of a child being sent home from school for dying her hair blue. The poem can be seen as one in a narrative form since the poem is being described like a story, with several dialogues used. Using different literary devices and imagery, Adcock manages to transform such a minor event and convey the different issues face in adolescence’s life such as friendship, solidarity, school life, home life, family relationship, independence and the many social boundaries that they are being confronted with.  

        The poem deals with independence and individuality in human beings. The main character- Heidi, in the poem has obviously grown up, and has developed her own thoughts and personality, and this can be seen in the headmistress’s tone, being unused to students dying their hair ‘blue’. The poem successfully shows how important relationships between parents and children are, as without her father’s help she would not have achieved her independence. Her father is recognized as a “freedom-loving father”, showing the support he gives to Heidi, which is not very usual among parents. From the poem we can also see Heidi’s strong determination in achieving what she wants, as she is strong minded “Tell them it won’t wash out-not even if I wanted to try”. This shows her courage in standing up to what she believes in, and the courage to strive for what she desires.

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The poem uses some imagery, and a metaphor is used “shimmered behind the arguments”, demonstrating how they were all aware of the depressing news of her mother’s death, and that it was a major problem that she was going through. Despite this the poet regains Heidi’s justice and strongly states his firm and that by dying her hair blue was not to rebel against her mother’s death, “It would have been unfair to mention your mother’s death, but that shimmered behind the arguments.” The poet however, manages to evoke the reader’s feelings, such as to feel what Heidi is going ...

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