Analysis of Heaney's Poem "Mid-Term Break" Essay

944 Words 4 Pages
Mid-term Break at first glance, seems to be a fairly simple, straight forward poem, in the way that (at first) it seems to lack emotion and has a child-like quality and feel; but as you read on, you notice various elements and techniques that Heaney has subtly incorporated into the poem to make you think otherwise. In fact, this poem is very cleverly written and is extremely emotional. Heaney uses a range of really effective techniques. Because there is no rhyme and lack of rhythm the poem flows more and seems more natural, enjambment also makes the poem flow easily between lines and stanzas. Onomatopoeia are used to express emotion during the poem; such as “cooed,” “whispers,” “coughed,” and “knocked”. The use of these words seems to give …show more content…
The ambiguity makes the opening more dramatic as it is much unexpected that the poem is about or is connected to death. After arriving home, the boy is met by his father whom is crying in the porch. Here you notice that the stereotypical roles of the parents have been swapped around, with the father crying, and the mother “coughing out tearless angry sighs”. This really emphasizes the traumatising experience that this family are going through. It illustrates how painful a death of a loved one is for anyone. “My mother held my hand in hers and coughed out angry tearless sighs”. This quote is by far the most effective and poignant in the poem. The mother is clinging on to the boy’s hand; it is almost like she feels if she doesn’t cling on to him she will loose him too. “Coughed out angry tearless sighs”. This part of the quote is particularly effective, as Heaney has used juxtaposition. By putting these actions, feelings and adjectives together it highlights the contrasts between them but also shows how they link together to show that the mother doesn’t ‘know what to do or even how to feel, but whatever she does or feels wont help in any way the extreme pain of a practically broken heart. The reader empathises with the mother so mush here, as it feels so real It is noticeable that funerals and deaths are quite common, “He had
Open Document