Compare the Presentation of Urban Warfare and Its Effects in ‘Belfast Confetti’ and ‘the Yellow Palm’ – James Hayes

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Compare the presentation of urban warfare and its effects in ‘Belfast Confetti’ and ‘The Yellow Palm’ – James Hayes 11B The first factor I notice about the two poems is that ‘Belfast Confetti’ is talking about the effect of urban warfare in the present tense, whereas ‘The Yellow Palm’ is talking about how Baghdad has been affected, thus in the past tense. On the first line of ‘Belfast Confetti’, we can assume that an explosion has taken place, ‘Suddenly as the riot squad moved in, it was raining exclamation marks.’ A pause is used here to signify the detonation. The enjambment used here is almost metaphorical for the form of the poem being shattered by the bomb and is a common theme throughout the Poem. Ciaran Carson may have used the words ‘exclamation marks’ as it is a visual metaphor for the nails which had been put in the bombs. The second line of ‘The Yellow Palm’ says, ‘I watched a funeral pass.’ The word ‘watched’ shows us that the poem is in the past tense. Robert Minhinnick was a Welsh poet who knows Baghdad very well and even though we notice that the poem is told in first person, this doesn’t necessarily mean that the character speaking is Robert. The final word of the line rhymes with the final word of the fourth line, ‘glass’ describing what the coffin was made of. This is significant because everyone can see into the coffin and is metaphorical to the fact that everyone can see and if affected by the urban war. The final phrase of the first six-line stanza is ‘poison gas’, which describes the brutality of the death caused by this urban war. When said in a Welsh accent, this too rhymes with the second (pass) and fourth (glass) line’s final word. The forms of both poems contrast, however both poems keep a constant form throughout, so in this sense are similar. ‘Belfast Confetti’s’ form is immediately striking. Instead of neat, compact

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