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Essay

  • Submitted by: lauraDunsmore
  • on May 7, 2012
  • Category: History
  • Length: 900 words

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Textual Analysis Laura Dunsmore
Brooklyn Cop
This poem is all about the life of a policeman on the beat, it opens in a particularly striking manner with very unexpected imagery. I found the idea of the gorilla particularly powerful and well explored in the whole poem. The poem is centred on this “gorilla” who patrols the mean streets of Brooklyn trying to keep the peace and prevent violence and crime. The poet develops the idea of the beast in different ways, all highlighted with powerful imagery. The theme of violence and the fragility of peace in society are also explored through the life of the policeman. In the beginning of the poem it gives you a stereotypical and non-stereotypical image of a policeman, as on line 1 a simile is used “built like a gorilla” implies he is big and strong and “..but less timid” implies the man is brave. In line 3 the poet describes the man having “two hieroglyphs in his face that mean trouble” giving the reader an idea that the cop is looking for trouble. A metaphor is used in lines 4-5 “he walks the sidewalk and the thin tissue over violence” showing the divide between civilization and the violence on the streets of Brooklyn. You learn about two characters in this poem the policeman at work and his alter ego at home, you feel sorry for him because his love for his wife means he is vulnerable to the dangers his job brings, “.. when he said ‘see you babe’ to his wife, he hoped it, he truly hoped it” the poet uses repetition to emphasis his point in this line. The personality you learn about when he leaves his house to go to work is very different from the vulnerable one you have learnt about. The policeman is fearless and savage and although is afraid that he might be killed in the line of duty has to overcome these fears every morning. In line 8 of stanza one a metaphor is used “He is a gorilla” to emphasise how the policeman has changed from the beginning of the poem to strengthen the image and emphasises the savage,...

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