Analysis of the Poem 'Half Past Two -U a Fanthorpe

692 WordsAug 8, 20133 Pages
Half past two –U A FANTHORPE This poem is written by U. A. Fanthorpe. It looks like a child has written it. The boy was told to stay behind until half past two but this has no meaning because he doesn’t know how to read time. There is repetition of doing something wrong pointing to the punitive nature of educational system. Children are always being punished for doing something wrong. Adults never have time to sit and talk and explain to the kid so that he doesn’t repeat the mistake again. Kids are innocent. They don’t understand and repeatedly commit same mistake. Being angry the teacher punished the little boy oblivious of the fact that he /she never taught him the notion of time. It is a poem dealing with the concept of time from a…show more content…
Thus, for him time is physical, something concrete we can see touch. This is why he says “ he knew a lot of time: he knew Gettinguptime, timeyouwereofftime ….but not half past two.” According to the little boy he already met all the time / events mentioned but never met half past two. This is form of personification used to render the poem more childlike, innocent so that the reader understands child’s psychology. He knows many time like gettinguptime, timeyouwereofftime etc. these time are the daily activities he engages in. for example, he knows at what time to get up. For him that time is the ‘gettinguptime. He knows at what time his parents were off / returned home and all, so that time was ‘timetouwereofftime, he knew TVtime , the time he was allowed to watch TV maybe after his homework done and all .. and the time he was at home etc…. The poem abounds with compound words like gettinguptime, TVtime etc to show the difference in the level of understanding between kids and adults; and also to show the meaninglessness of time to them. But he but doesn’t know how to read clock. He knows only the everyday events he engages in. he knows only hour hand and minute hand of the clock but cannot make anything out of it. So he waited, confused. He escapes in his dream world, plays with his handnail, watching outside, lost in the smell of the flowers on the teacher desk. Suddenly the teacher remembered she had given him detention and asks him

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