Gwen Harwood Essay

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How does Gwen Harwood lead you to share her concerns about aspects of the world? Gwen Harwood is a sophisticated poet who uses many means of writing to entice the reader to share her views on certain aspects of the world. Her poems demonstrate her worries in parenting and relationships within families. She also expresses fear of death and her interest in individuality. A collection of six poems demonstrates the techniques used by the poet to convey her messages and influence the reader to understand her concerns. Family relationships and parenting are of great concern to the poet. In Suburban Sonnet and In The Park she describes the lives of two mothers (possibly the same character in both) and their tiredness. The children whine and fight, playing on their mothers’ nerves and draining her energy. In the poem In The Park, the woman pretends to someone that her little bundles-of-joy are just that, angelic children. As he walks away however, she confesses to nobody that ‘they have eaten me alive.’ This expression demonstrates the feeling of being alone and ignored. The mother in Suburban Sonnet expresses her anxiety in trying to achieve with small children. The mother is overwhelmed by how much she has to do – cook dinner, clean up after her children, keep them entertained and comfort them, presenting the views of many mothers. The language Gwen Harwood uses in these poems emphasises the feeling of drained energy and failure in other aspects of their lives (for example fugue playing). Phrases such as whine, bicker, tug at skirt and rehearsing names and birthdays show the poet’s cleverness in incorporating everyday annoyances into the poem In The Park. Suburban Sonnet uses words like nausea, overpowers, scours, yawned and soft corpse to strengthen the point of the poem. These two sonnets are examples of Gwen Harwood leading the audience to share her thoughts

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