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    hi

    Anyone please grade my commentary which is based on the following poem for a level eng lit. How is it overall?



    On the grass when I arrive,
    Filling the stillness with life,
    But ready to scare off
    At the very first wrong move,
    In the ivy when I leave,

    It's you, blackbird, I love.

    I park, pause, take heed.
    Breathe. Just breathe and sit
    And lines I once translated
    Come back: 'I want away
    To the house of death, to my father
    Under the low clay roof.'

    And I think of one gone to him,
    A little stillness dancer -
    Haunter-son, lost brother -
    Cavorting through the yard,
    So glad to see me home,
    My homesick first term over.

    And think of a neighbour's words
    Long after the accident;
    'Yon bird on the shed roof,
    Up on the ridge for weeks -
    I said nothing at the time
    But I never liked yon bird'

    The automatic lock
    Clunks shut, the blackbird's panic
    Is shortlived, for a second
    I've a bird's eye view of myself,
    A shadow on raked gravel
    In front of my house of life.

    Hedge-hop, I am absolute
    For you, your ready talkback,
    Your each stand-offish comeback,
    Your picky, nervy goldbeak -
    On the grass when I arrive,

    In the ivy when I leave.


    Commentary:

    The poet has come back to his old house-where he used to live some forty year ago- and spotting the blackbird in his lawn spurts different feelings in his mind. Different images arise in his which have associations with the blackbird.

    The poet reflects over different aspects of life and describe his feelings and thoughts in a very subtle but effective manner. In this poem the poet endeavors to capture the whole life itself.

    The firs stanza suggests that on the inception, something very loved is near while at the end the loved one may have to move away. In the second line “stillness” indicates sadness or depressions whereas “life” signifies delight and hope. This delight and hope is short-lived and may disappear in a while just like the blackbird that is ‘ready to scare off.’ The joy will vanish and no one will be able to spot “it in the ivy” but it would certainly be there. But love is eternal and the loved ones are thus immortal-a point that makes the poet remark ‘It is you, blackbird, I love.’
    The poet has meticulously observed the blackbird and considers it to be extremely significant in his life. His love for the blackbird is the kind of love that one has for one’s dear friend. His second person addressing style “It is you…” stresses the intimacy of this relationship.

    The separate sentence at the end of ever paragraph-forming a single-sentenced paragraph-is deliberately presented in this manner because it adds details to the preceding paragraph-mostly reflective details but occasionally clarifying details. “It is you, blackbird, I love” implies a change of mood in poem. The mood has shifted to reflective from observatory. This sentence is an end-stopped(in contrast to the preceding enjambments) one thus emphasizing the finality of the initial image, and the poet moves on.

    Though the poet relaxes deeply as suggested by the slow pace of the first sentence of the second large stanza; the poet is reflecting very deeply in a relaxed manner and his thoughts get struck over the death of his four year old brother, and the mood turns sad.

    There is contrast in almost every stanza; in the second one the poet’s apparently relaxed mood gives rise to a very painful memory-a memory apparently about a translation-perhaps of his coursework-which takes him some forty years back and he reflects on the death of his younger brother, Christopher. The noteworthy point is the poet’s saying-about his deceased brother:”And I think of one gone to him,” while actually Christopher was the first one to pass away. This shows the poet’s attitude towards death-the poet follows a chronological order of birth and accordingly declares Christopher as the ‘one gone to him.’ Further, he does not mention directly that Christopher is dead but instead employs euphemism ‘one gone to him’ to say this and in other cases subtle expressions like ‘stillness dancer’, ‘haunter-son’, ‘lost brother.’ This indicates that the poet still has lots of tender feelings for his little brother. In this stanza such sad feelings are contrasted by the excitement of Christopher who would be ‘so glad to see’ him back. The oxymorons used to describe the brother (‘stillness dancer’ & ‘Haunter son’) further add to the contrasting nature of the third stanza-that may be described as the most contrasting stanza. These oxymorons present two-sided view to Christopher: that his pleasant memories are an asset but they can also cause sadness because of them the poet misses his little brother.

    The contrasting feelings and words-found throughout the poem-are connotations of vivid characteristics of life: that life is not a ‘happily ever after tale’ and that life is complete-and perfect-with the mix of grieves and delight; misery and pleasure. The contrasting expressions also highlight each other and probably point out that without sorrow, happiness carries no meaning. In this poem, the blackbird symbolizes many a phenomena; it implies both grieves and delights-the very first stanza contains these ideas in a brief manner: that the blackbird can add sparks to the poet’s life is true but it may also fly away and so the poet would again be left with ‘stillness.’

    The 18th line carries a very grievous feeling of the poet which is not so obvious-it was not just the term that was no more but so was his little brother. It is an end-stopped line and its completeness suggests an end to the two and the contrast is obvious again since one end is greatly pleasant while the other one tremendously depressing; one a source of joy while the other one a havoc. The poet must have been emotionally shattered by the unexpected loss. The idea captures the element of uncertainty and unpredictability in life as all humans experience at one time or another.

    This poem carries a very balanced idea of life-with the features of contrast evident in it- and is truly a realistic piece of literature. To the poet, for instance, the bird is a being that carries a lot of significance and signifies a lot about life while the same bird, to a neighbor, is an evil omen; the neighbor believed that death of Christopher came about because of the blackbird being at a particular place for some continuous time-implying something bad would happen. There is discord between the view of the poet and that of the neighbor; it is this very discord that implies different approaches to life and living; that how people may interpret their natural world and how well they appreciate it. The poet’s is an optimistic vision while the neighbor’s pessimistic. But the poet is not at all critical of the other view and presents it in a very objective manner, leaving us to draw conclusions.

    In the large, fifth stanza the abrupt locking of the car, and the resulting noise shocks the previously calm blackbird. The onomatopoeia ‘clunks’ depicts the locking sound and stresses the impact of the sound on the blackbird. Uncertainties in life can shock us to a great or small extent depending on the event. The blackbird is more vulnerable compared to the poet, but the poet does not necessarily believe this and goes on to call himself ‘A shadow’ suggesting that no one is going to last forever, no matter how big in size the might be; before nature, everyone is equal. The metaphor (‘A shadow’)reflects the poet’s keen observation and objectivity and thus he is able to see himself before his ‘house of life’-a sheer contrast to the ‘house of death’ described earlier in the third large stanza. Now he is full of hope, in contrast to the earlier mood of gloom and despair described in third large stanza.

    It is the very blackbird that helps him figure out the way nature behaves and impact life. The poet resultantly grows hopeful and wants to make the most of all that he has left with him. He does not want to waste a single moment and starts directly addressing the blackbird-perhaps intending to appreciate the nature in an even subtle way. ‘Hedge-hop’ literally means the blackbird’s flight over ground; this is in fact a connotation of excitement and joy in life. It also means that the poet has decided to absolutely devote himself to the positive aspects of life (the blackbird itself) and does not want to mourn over his losses. The blackbird’s ‘hedge-hop’ is complementary to the ‘cavorting’ of Christopher; the poet is excited and is fully cherishing the moment, not to miss anything. The poet’s complete dedication to the blackbird shows his positive outlook to life.

    The blackbird’s behavior is purely natural and the poet wants to make sense of it further so that he can figure out his own conflicts and tensions. In this way, he can come to terms with them. The enjambments in the lines of the last large stanza indicate the continuous and free movements of the bird which are not restricted by an man-made barrier. It could also indicate the continuity of life and the need in it to move no and on. The full repetition of the two lines from the first stanza now at the end of the poem hints at the poet’s going into a flash back. This repletion is of great significance in the poem and implies the natural, continuous cycle of life and death.

    The blackbird’s stance sums all it up and that is why ‘The Blackbird of Glanmore’ is Heaney’s favorite poem and he calls it to be ‘A different stage of life.’

    Thanks for reading it.
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    Aah you went for Heaney in the end? Nice one :awesome:


    Will mark today :yep:
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    Thanks for everything!

    Congratulations for the award!

    Can't wait to see my poem graded.
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    (Original post by Hal.E.Lujah)
    Aah you went for Heaney in the end? Nice one :awesome:


    Will mark today :yep:
    Dear Mr. Hal

    Plz plz grade it soon.....This is my first attempt.

    Thank you.
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    "a phenomenon"
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    (Original post by methewthomson)
    hi

    Anyone please grade my commentary which is based on the following poem for a level eng lit. How is it overall?



    On the grass when I arrive,
    Filling the stillness with life,
    But ready to scare off
    At the very first wrong move,
    In the ivy when I leave,

    It's you, blackbird, I love.

    I park, pause, take heed.
    Breathe. Just breathe and sit
    And lines I once translated
    Come back: 'I want away
    To the house of death, to my father
    Under the low clay roof.'

    And I think of one gone to him,
    A little stillness dancer -
    Haunter-son, lost brother -
    Cavorting through the yard,
    So glad to see me home,
    My homesick first term over.

    And think of a neighbour's words
    Long after the accident;
    'Yon bird on the shed roof,
    Up on the ridge for weeks -
    I said nothing at the time
    But I never liked yon bird'

    The automatic lock
    Clunks shut, the blackbird's panic
    Is shortlived, for a second
    I've a bird's eye view of myself,
    A shadow on raked gravel
    In front of my house of life.

    Hedge-hop, I am absolute
    For you, your ready talkback,
    Your each stand-offish comeback,
    Your picky, nervy goldbeak -
    On the grass when I arrive,

    In the ivy when I leave.


    Commentary:

    The poet has come back to his old house-where he used to live some forty years ago- and spotting the blackbird in his lawn spurts different feelings in his mind. Different images arise in his which have associations with the blackbird.

    The poet reflects over different aspects of life and describe his feelings and thoughts in a very subtle but effective manner. In this poem the poet endeavors to capture the whole life itself.
    [I think your introduction can be done differently. You should accomplish three things in your introduction:

    - Set the context of the essay, i.e. In 'Poet's Name's' poem 'Blah blah', the poet has come back to his old house...

    - Outline what you will discuss - which is what you've attempted to do, but phrased it badly. Try instead "The poem utilises subtle techniques to reflect over numerous different aspects of life. The poet endeavours to capture all life in the poem through form, style, and discourse." What you've done then, is said you'll look at the 3 things you should look at, form, style, and content.

    - Link into the rest of the essay. All this means is that your introduction is relevant to the next paragraph. Open your next paragraph not as a seperate conversation, but as a continuation.


    Always make sure you've got those 3 things done.

    Context, Outline, Link. ]



    The firs stanza suggests that on the inception, something very loved is near while at the end the loved one may have to move away.

    In the second line “stillness” indicates sadness or depressions whereas “life” signifies delight and hope. This delight and hope is short-lived and may disappear in a while just like the blackbird that is ‘ready to scare off.’
    [I've separated this out, because you've made a point, given an example, but not made any explanation.You need to have a line after each of these little mini paragraphs saying WHY the poet does this. You can link it to the points in your introduction - that he's doing it to reflect on life.]

    The joy will vanish and no one will be able to spot “it in the ivy” but it would certainly be there. But love is eternal and the loved ones are thus immortal-a point that makes the poet remark ‘It is you, blackbird, I love.’
    [Again, not really any explanation of WHY the poet is doing this]

    The poet has meticulously observed the blackbird and considers it to be extremely significant in his life. His love for the blackbird is the kind of love that one has for one’s dear friend. His second person addressing style “It is you…” stresses the intimacy of this relationship.
    [Still needs an explanation and a link. Why does he want to stress the intimacy of the relationship?]

    The separate sentence at the end of ever paragraph-forming a single-sentenced paragraph-is deliberately presented in this manner employed because it adds details to the preceding paragraph-mostly reflective details but occasionally clarifying details. “It is you, blackbird, I love” implies a change of mood in poem. The mood has shifted to reflective from observatory. This sentence is an end-stopped(in contrast to the preceding enjambments) one thus emphasizing the finality of the initial image, and the poet moves on. [A really fantastic analysis! I really want to give this analysis full marks, but again you haven't discussed why the poet is doing this in relation to the whole poem, i.e. why this is reflecting on life. All you need is a little sentence saying 'This transition could imply the poem is a metaphor for life' and it would be top marks.]

    Though the poet relaxes deeply as suggested by the slow pace of the first sentence of the second large stanza; the poet is reflecting very deeply in a relaxed manner [repeat is possible mistake]and his thoughts get struck over the death of his four year old brother, and the mood turns sad.[What does this mean in terms of the whole poem?]

    There is contrast in almost every stanza; in the second one the poet’s apparently relaxed mood gives rise to a very painful memory-a memory apparently about a translation-perhaps of his coursework-which takes him some forty years back and he reflects on the death of his younger brother, Christopher. The noteworthy point is the poet’s saying-about his deceased brother:”And I think of one gone to him,” while actually Christopher was the first one to pass away. This shows the poet’s attitude towards death-the poet follows a chronological order of birth and accordingly declares Christopher as the ‘one gone to him.’ [If you had made points and links for all your other points, this would easily be a perfect section. Well done ]Further, he does not mention directly that Christopher is dead but instead employs euphemism ‘one gone to him’ to say this and in other cases subtle expressions like ‘stillness dancer’, ‘haunter-son’, ‘lost brother.’ This language [it never hurts to make it easy for the examiner to tick the boxes]indicates that the poet still has lots of tender feelings for his little brother. In this stanza such sad feelings are contrasted by the excitement of Christopher who would be ‘so glad to see’ him back. The oxymorons used to describe the brother (‘stillness dancer’ & ‘Haunter son’) further add to the contrasting nature of the third stanza-that may be described as the most contrasting stanza. These oxymorons present two-sided view to Christopher: that his pleasant memories are an asset but they can also cause sadness because of them the poet misses his little brother.[A link isn't nescessary but strengthens your essay here, a line saying 'Again then we see Heaney reflecting on life even in his technique.]

    The contrasting feelings and words-found throughout the poem-are connotations of vivid characteristics of life: that life is not a ‘happily ever after tale’ and that life is complete-and perfect-with the mix of grieves and delight; misery and pleasure. The contrasting expressions also highlight each other and probably point out that without sorrow, happiness carries no meaning. [This is exactly what you need to do at the end of the points. It feels tacked on here as an afterthought, and the points feel a bit bullet pointy rather than stylistically perfect.]


    In this poem, the blackbird symbolizes many a phenomena; it implies both grieves and delights-the very first stanza contains these ideas in a brief manner: that the blackbird can add sparks to the poet’s life is true but it may also fly away and so the poet would again be left with ‘stillness.’[Move this, it's really out of place here. Perhaps further down when you talk about the bird again?]

    The 18th line carries a very grievous feeling of the poet which is not so obvious-it was not just the term that was no more but so was his little brother. It is an end-stopped line and its completeness suggests an end to the two and the contrast is obvious again since one end is greatly pleasant while the other one tremendously depressing; one a source of joy while the other one a of havoc. The poet must have been emotionally shattered by the unexpected loss. The idea captures the element of uncertainty and unpredictability in life as all humans experience at one time or another.[Fantastic :yy:]

    This poem carries a very balanced idea of life-with the features of contrast evident in it- and is truly a realistic piece of literature. To the poet, for instance, the bird is a being that carries a lot of significance and signifies a lot about life while the same bird, to a neighbor, is an evil omen; the neighbor believed that death of Christopher came about because of the blackbird being at a particular place for some continuous time-implying something bad would happen. There is discord between the view of the poet and that of the neighbor; it is this very discord that implies different approaches to life and living; that how people may interpret their natural world and how well they appreciate it. The poet’s is an optimistic vision while the neighbor’s pessimistic. But the poet is not at all critical of the other view and presents it in a very objective manner, leaving us to draw conclusions.[A bit wordy, but marks awarded]

    In the large, fifth stanza the abrupt locking of the car, and the resulting noise shocks the previously calm blackbird. The onomatopoeia ‘clunks’ depicts the locking sound and stresses the impact of the sound on the blackbird. Uncertainties in life can shock us to a great or small extent depending on the event. The blackbird is more vulnerable compared to the poet, but the poet does not necessarily believe this and goes on to call himself ‘A shadow’ suggesting that no one is going to last forever, no matter how big in size the might be; before nature, everyone is equal. The metaphor (‘A shadow’)reflects the poet’s keen observation and objectivity and thus he is able to see himself before his ‘house of life’-a sheer contrast to the ‘house of death’ described earlier in the third large stanza. Now he is full of hope, in contrast to the earlier mood of gloom and despair described in third large stanza.[Why does he choose to do this, in terms of the overall message?]

    It is the very blackbird that helps him figure out the way nature behaves and impact life. The poet resultantly grows hopeful and wants to make the most of all that he has left with him. He does not want to waste a single moment and starts directly addressing the blackbird-perhaps intending to appreciate the nature in an even more subtle way. ‘Hedge-hop’ literally means the blackbird’s flight over ground; this is in fact a connotation of excitement and joy in life. It also means that the poet has decided to absolutely devote himself to the positive aspects of life (the blackbird itself) and does not want to mourn over his losses. The blackbird’s ‘hedge-hop’ is complementary to the ‘cavorting’ of Christopher; the poet is excited and is fully cherishing the moment, not to miss anything. The poet’s complete dedication to the blackbird shows his positive outlook to life.[:yy:]

    The blackbird’s behavior is purely natural and the poet wants to make sense of it further so that he can figure out his own conflicts and tensions. In this way, he can come to terms with them. [Is there a particular technique that he's used to make this feeling apparent? The next lines seem to be more about the birds freedom than it's natural behaviour.] The enjambments in the lines of the last large stanza indicate the continuous and free movements of the bird which are not restricted by an man-made barrier. It could also indicate the continuity of life and the need in it to move no and on. The full repetition of the two lines from the first stanza now at the end of the poem hints at the poet’s going into a flash back. This repletion is of great significance in the poem and implies the natural, continuous cycle of life and death.

    The blackbird’s stance sums all it up and that is why ‘The Blackbird of Glanmore’ is Heaney’s favorite poem and he calls it to be ‘A different stage of life.’
    [I would save a bit more space for the conclusion, and re do it. Just as Heaney has done, make your work a cycle, you intro with what you're going to discuss, you discuss it, you conclude on it.]

    Thanks for reading it.



    Heya! I finally got the marking done.

    I gave as detailed feedback as I could. I think your essay was great, the analysis of the poem was enjoyable to read. It started extremely slowly, I felt that you picked up the pace about a quarter of the way in, and ran out of space for the end. The focus should really be on redoing your first half, then conclusion, to make the style strong. There are some really powerful points that are just obscured by the format.


    You can augment alot of linking and more explanations into the first half. There's a real lack of substance in the early points which contrasts heavily with the later points. Move some things around to make sure that your essay is always extremely focused on what you think the poem is about.

    I can't grade it as I normally would, but I would expect this to be borderline top band. The introduction might give a really bad impression to your teacher though and detract from your later points, as do the mistakes. I've highlighted the ones I spotted, I've more than likely missed some though so comb through it!

    Anyway, hope that helps!
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    (Original post by the bear)
    "a phenomenon"
    Thanks.
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    (Original post by Hal.E.Lujah)
    Heya! I finally got the marking done.

    I gave as detailed feedback as I could. I think your essay was great, the analysis of the poem was enjoyable to read. It started extremely slowly, I felt that you picked up the pace about a quarter of the way in, and ran out of space for the end. The focus should really be on redoing your first half, then conclusion, to make the style strong. There are some really powerful points that are just obscured by the format.


    You can augment alot of linking and more explanations into the first half. There's a real lack of substance in the early points which contrasts heavily with the later points. Move some things around to make sure that your essay is always extremely focused on what you think the poem is about.

    I can't grade it as I normally would, but I would expect this to be borderline top band. The introduction might give a really bad impression to your teacher though and detract from your later points, as do the mistakes. I've highlighted the ones I spotted, I've more than likely missed some though so comb through it!

    Anyway, hope that helps!

    Thank you very, very, very much. I can't believe that even my first attempt on a poem commentary could be so good.
    BTW, as I said before that I am self-studying so I don't have any teacher.

    Your complements made my day.
    You are the best person I have ever known. Your helpful nature is just beyond compare.

    I will definitely try to follow your precious advice to make the commentary even better.
    Thanks a ton.
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    (Original post by methewthomson)
    Thank you very, very, very much. I can't believe that even my first attempt on a poem commentary could be so good.
    BTW, as I said before that I am self-studying so I don't have any teacher.

    Your complements made my day.
    You are the best person I have ever known. Your helpful nature is just beyond compare.

    I will definitely try to follow your precious advice to make the commentary even better.
    Thanks a ton.

    Haha aww that's really nice to say.

    It's amazing that you're self taught. I did that for A levels so I know how hard it is!

    Hope you get a good mark
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    (Original post by Hal.E.Lujah)
    Haha aww that's really nice to say.

    It's amazing that you're self taught. I did that for A levels so I know how hard it is!

    Hope you get a good mark

    Did you mean that you too were self-studying at A level? If yes, then I am very much delighted.

    I wish you that you get good marks at university.
 
 
 
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