A Comparison in the Way Language Is Used in Praise Song for My Mother and Born Yesterday

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A comparison of the way language is used in P.S.F.M.M and Born Yesterday. Praise song for my mother and Born Yesterday are two closely related yet contrasting poems; They both talk of loved relatives, however in Grace Nichols' poem she talks of her deceased mother in an uplifting positive manner whereas Philip Larkin talks of his newborn niece in a plain yet hopeful fashion. The poems start in different ways, with Larkin addressing the newborn child "tightly folded bud" and Nichols starting without introduction "You were water to me deep and bold and fathoming"; the metaphor "tightly folded bud" is used to show that this newborn infant has not grown any personality or features that would affect her, so it seems that Larkin uses this as a blank slate so he can imprint what he wants onto the child. Larkin continues on to say "I have wished you something none of the others would" he uses this as a pretence (as if he is preparing her for the unconventional blessing) to what he is going to say about the child. Nichols uses a essential of life "water" to introduce what the poem will be like: her describing how much Nichols needed her. Next Larkin says "Not the usual stuff about being beautiful" He does this as if to say that he is not going to say anything about being perfect "the usual stuff" (informal tone suggests he intends it to make the poem quite plain.). However he does wish that if one of these exceptional qualities shine through, she should have a happy life like that "And should it prove possible, well, you're a lucky girl." (once again the use of the informal "well" furthers the sense of plainness.) Nichols however uses a very different tone, she uses words such as "pull", "mantling", "warm" and "replenishing" to say that her mother was essential to how she is now. These words show how when Nichols was vulnerable her mother would guide her ("pull" sense
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