Island man: Grace Nichols

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Texts from other cultures

Old Father: Hugh Boatswain

Island man: Grace Nichols


Two different Caribbean writers write these two poems. They both were in England while writing the poems. The theme of the poems is about loving their country and culture. On other hand the poems are about patriotism.

   “Old Father” and “Island man” is about the melancholy passions of their heart. They are missing their country so badly and they are desperate to go back to their motherland.

They listed their nature, atmosphere, people, seaside, birds, cricket matches and so on.

Everything they mentioned in their poem keeps reminding them about their country.

   They can see their country on their dream.

Although “Old Father” is more descriptive than “Island man” two poets have explained successfully their wishes and reasons behind missing their country.

“ Old Father” and hasn’t got any rhyme or rhythm  “Island man” either.


Old Father: (England 1959)

 The poem is written more descriptively and manifestly expressed than “Island Man”. The poem is about the poet’s real life story. He describes his passion, his feelings more splendidly as he could .He tried to bring different subjects to give a life to the poem. In the whole poem he mentioned the atmosphere in England for him and compared it to his own country. He has spent a lot of time in England but now he is dissatisfied and desperate to back to his motherland.

     In a short period of his life he tried to act like an English man. He tried to get habituated with the adjacent atmosphere and people. He did to straight his curly black hairs. According to the poem some of his pretentious trying to be an English man is given bellow-

  • “Never brunette” He doesn’t expect a woman with dark skin, hair and eyes.
  • “And his suit, cream or beige” He wears suit like an English man wear.
  • He use to make joke about black people and even he doesn’t like black people to serve his ordered foods in the pub.
  • He doesn’t eat Caribbean food.
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Although he tried to do everything like a white people, (British people) the white people are still saying, “He ‘s an example to his people”. Old father is now disappointed and hoping to go back to his own country.

After a long time Old father realized he couldn’t be a proper English person than he started to think about his country again.


    Island man:

“Island man” is quite simple than “Old father”. The poem was written about a Caribbean Island man .The poet tried to explain his feelings compared with her. ...

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