Essay on The Poetry of Simon Armitage

3052 Words13 Pages
The Poetry of Simon Armitage

Simon Armitage was born in Marsden, West Yorkshire in 1963. He studied Geography at Portsmouth, and Psychology at Manchester, qualified as a social worker and worked for six years as a probation officer. He has also worked as a shelf stacker, disc jockey and lathe operator. He is now a freelance writer and broadcaster. His work includes song lyrics, plays and scripts for TV and radio.

Armitage's first collection, Zoom, was published by Bloodaxe in 1989. Subsequent poetry books, all published by Faber, include Kid (1992), Book of Matches (1993), The Dead Sea Poems (1995), Moon Country (1996) and CloudCuckooLand(1997).

Untitled Poem: "I am very bothered when I
…show more content…
"Butterfingered" in line 13 is apt because of the clumsiness of the boy's attention seeking behaviour, but also because people used to put butter on burns to soothe the pain.

How seriously we take the narrator's feelings of guilt depends on the tone in which the first line of each stanza is read. "I am very bothered" is not a particularly strong expression, and one that could be read in a variety of ways. The first line of stanza two is almost laughing at itself because of the exaggerated style.

The speaker also seems to want to distance himself from his feelings by saying, in stanza three, "Don't believe me, please". This could be part of the awkwardness of a lad who feels he has to play a trick on a girl to get her attention, or it could be the shame or embarrassment of someone looking back on what he was like when he was younger.

The structure of the poem is important. It is written in fourteen lines and can be classed as a sonnet, which is a traditional form for love poetry. In one way this could be considered as making fun of this form because it is not a very romantic idea, but on the other hand it is about one person's attempt to
Get Access