Poetry Essay planning

Poetry Essay planning
“Ariel” P
An adult horsewoman
celebrating the thrill of an
early morning gallop
“London” B
A city stroller wanders the
streets in despair of the
human misery s/he sees all
“Daddy” P
A child/adult addresses her
dead father in an attempt to
exorcise the psychological
hold he has over her
Patriarchy; psychic trauma;
“The Tyger” B
An anxious speaker questions
the metaphysical origins of a
deadly predator
Religious dread;
“The Ecchoing Green” B
A child celebrating communal
play on a village green
Pastoral innocence
“The Arrival of the Bee Box” P
A novice apiarist weighing up
what to do with a new
collection of bees
writing / career; unequal
power and its abuse; anxieties
and the conflict between the
Id and the Ego
“Digging” H
Professional poet recalling
childhood memories of digging
potatoes with father &
“Blackberry Picking” H
Speaker recalling childhood
memories of collecting and
keeping blackberries
Poets: Sylvia Plath; William Blake; Seamus Heaney
Puns on “marks” and
“chartered” give way to
synaesthesia and the
traumatic effects of sights and
sounds; “mind-forg’d
manacles” an ironic self as
well as social description
A key sign of transformation in
the poem is the bookended
use of writing imagery from 1st
stanza’s (pretentious /
artificial) simile of the pen “as
snug as a gun” (alluding to the
‘mightier than the sword’
aphorism) to the final stanza’s
metaphor of a spade (“I’ll dig
with it”)
Urban / social corruption;
enslavement / oppression;
Alliteration and assonance
blend with a variable rhythm
to not only evoke the sounds
in memory of the father &
grandfathers’ digging, but
develop an alteration in the
poet / speaker’s attitude
Tradition; father/son
relationship; writing / career;
A single voice, typical of B’s
Songs of Experience – bleak
and critical in its outlook
A single voice, again typical of
B’s bleak SoE – but lost in its
circular fearful questioning
The rigid, box like cinquain
stanzas give way at the end to
a final single line which
symbolizes the escape to
freedom that the speaker
promises her bees. The
poem’s progress goes through
her states of fear, revulsion,
guilt and identification or love
for the bees.
A key transformation in the
poem is from arrogance to
respect, largely figured
through changes in diction
used to describe the act of
potato digging, as the poet
moves into memory