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Comparison of Mid-Term Break, The Field Mouse, and On My First Sonne

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Comparison of Mid-Term Break, The Field Mouse, and On My First Sonne

The above poems are written by 3 different people and on reading them

they seem to be about very different things. But at heart, they are

about death and the pain that appears afterwards. Seamus Heaney's

Mid-Term Break is a memory of his four-year-old brother's death.

Gillian Clarke's The Field Mouse is about death in a political

conflict compared to a death in nature. Finally On My First Sonne by

Ben Johnson is about the death of his son and the religious view of

the situation.

Both Heaney and Johnson's poems are about the death of a close loved

one and how it is dealt with emotionally and in reality. On looking at

the title of Heaney's poem, you almost immediately assume that is a

happy one, possibly about what he spends his holidays doing. This of

course is not the case.

Unlike the other two poems, you do not know immediately who has died

or even if there is a death. Throughout the poem he keeps us guessing

what is happening. He gives us a clue and we have to piece it together

like a detective putting a jigsaw puzzle together to solve a crime.

Also the fact that it is a memory and he is talking about himself as a

child shows how badly it would have affected him and his parents

emotionally. Through Heaney talks about the reaction of all his family

members to his brother's death, Johnson only talks about how his son's

death affected him.

You can see that since the deceased was his first son, that he is hit

emotionally very hard and seems to blame himself, but at the same time

consulates himself by thinking that he has gone to a better place.

Line 5 'O, could I loose all father now. For why.' seems to indicate

that he has lost a...

... middle of paper ...

...connection that the rest of

us probably would not.

I feel the poem that really explains the situation well is Seamus

Heaney's Mid-Term Break as it keeps the person in suspense over who

has died, but delivers a shock at the end when we find out who it

really is. This really mixes your emotions and unlike the other 2

makes you feel sorry for a death that happened over 20-30 years ago. I

also feel it is better because it focuses on the actually death. while

Healey does fill in these criteria.

Clarke's poem compares the killing of a field mouse to the killings in

the Bosnian War. Though this is clever, it does not show the bad

things in the Bosnian War as in reality the killing of one field mouse

cannot really be literally compared to the massive killings involving

the Muslims. The above reasons are why I think overall Seamus Heaney's

poem is the best.
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