Essay PreviewMore ↓
In the poem Mid-Term Break by Seamus Heaney, the ideas of death, trauma, grief and finality are explored. The poem itself is as haunting as it is brilliantly executed. The poem depicts a boy arriving home from boarding school, to where he is informed of the tragic death of his younger brother, whose doomed fate indelibly marks the narrator, whom is the boy’s older brother. The boy recounts the experience of losing a loved one. The author has incorporated many elements and style in a subtle and distinct manner.
The poem depicts a boy arriving home from school, “moaning in the college sick bay” to hear the news that his four year old brother has been killed in an accident. Upon arriving home, “I met my father crying.” This shows how death can cause much grief and trauma, as well as confusion. Here we can see that the stereotypical roles of the parents have been reversed/exchanged, with the father crying, and the boy’s mother, “Coughed out angry, tearless sighs.” It can be seen/evident, that deaths were quite common, “He had always taken funerals in his stride.” But no-one expected the death to hit quite so close to home… to the heart. And then we see the tables have turned; the parents no longer were the spectators of the funerals, now that their own flesh and blood had been taken away from them.
The theme within the poem is subtly expressed, with an almost childlike innocence. The theme is set out in a simple manner, yet pays much attention to detail. The theme is one of “finality.” Hence the title playing a huge role in the revealing of the theme. “Mid-Term Break” suggests finality… of one’s life…. Time. Along with death brings finality, and along with finality comes the repurcussions of death, such as trauma and grief for all involved.
The emotions of the poem are beautifully poignant, and this allows the reader to be transported to a world of different experience, such as the repression. The mood within the poem has a somber touch with an eerie silence. The poem positions the reader to come away with mixed emotions- anger, grief, confusion… all of which the topic of death brings with it. This leaves the audience truly captivated with the simple text that represents so much emotion.
There are many images depicted in the poem, which is what ultimately draws the audience into it’s graps/ The impenatrable, life-altering consequences of death and the secrets of adolescence bring the poem to life.
How to Cite this Page
"Death and Grief in Mid-Term Break." 123HelpMe.com. 02 Apr 2020
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The Theme Of Death In Mid-Term Break And The Early Purges The Irish poet Seamus Heaney is renowned for evoking his very personal experiences and feelings throughout his poetry. He frequently calls upon those experiences from his childhood to support his adult feelings over given topics and circumstances. The two poems Mid-Term Break and Early Purges both present two very personal experiences of Heaney's surrounding his juvenile experiences of death. Both poems combine a variation of techniques in miscellaneous manners to present such views.... [tags: Papers Mid Term Break Early Essays]
895 words (2.6 pages)
The Way Poets Present Ideas of Death and Loss in Mid-Term Break, On the Train, On My First Sonne and The Affliction of Margaret
- The Way Poets Present Ideas of Death and Loss in Mid-Term Break, On the Train, On My First Sonne and The Affliction of Margaret Works Cited Missing In the poems 'Mid-Term Break' by Seamus Heaney, 'On The Train' by Gillian Clarke, 'On My First Sonne' by Ben Jonson and 'The Affliction of Margaret' by William Wordsworth, all of the poets convey a loss or death, experienced by either the poet themselves, or other people too. In 'Mid-Term Break', Seamus Heaney experiences the loss of his younger brother (he is four years old: 'a four foot coffin, a foot for every year').... [tags: Papers]
1143 words (3.3 pages)
- Mid-term Break at first glance, seems to be a fairly simple, straight forward poem, in the way that (at first) it seems to lack emotion and has a child-like quality and feel; but as you read on, you notice various elements and techniques that Heaney has subtly incorporated into the poem to make you think otherwise. In fact, this poem is very cleverly written and is extremely emotional. Heaney uses a range of really effective techniques. Because there is no rhyme and lack of rhythm the poem flows more and seems more natural, enjambment also makes the poem flow easily between lines and stanzas.... [tags: poetry, mid-term break]
943 words (2.7 pages)
- Séamus Heaney's Mid-Term Break Séamus Heaney's "Mid-Term Break" is among the few poems that have emotionally moved me. The writer uses many techniques including similes, metaphors and beautiful lexical choice to convey the sombre and miserable situation of his brother's death. In this essay I am going to analyse the language of the poem and discuss, in more detail, the techniques used to convey the real sadness of the situation. "Mid-Term Break" is a very emotive poem in which Séamus Heaney reflects on the untimely demise of his little brother Christopher and explains what was going through his mind at that time.... [tags: Mid Term Break Seamus Heaney]
1865 words (5.3 pages)
- Reading a story or poem about death is usually sad and overtly predictable. However, Seamus Heaney inverts this mundane typicality to deliver a poem shrouded in mystery. The main aspects of Heaney's poem Mid-Term Break are the plot development and how the diction sets the somber tone that slowly reveals the mystery. One technique Heaney uses is diction, which aids in plot development. In the first stanza he uses words that draw out the stanza and make it seem to last a long time. In the first line the use of the word all drags out the line. The sense of time is apparent in this first stanza. The second line, Counting bells knelling classes to a close, uses words that describe... [tags: Heaney Mid-Term Break Poem Poetry Essays]
1053 words (3 pages)
- Distant Grief Author Seamus Heaney, in the poem “Mid-Term Break,” gives the reader a snapshot of death, detached from any emotional perspective, using narration, imagery, and foreshadowing. This event greatly affected the young poet and he recalls to the reader his memory the events precisely to the hour, with bells dismissing classes at two o’clock, to the ambulance arriving at ten o’clock. The speaker in the poem, assumed to be the poet himself, a young college student returns home mid-semester to attend the funeral of his 4 year old brother at his family’s home.... [tags: Fiction, Style, First-person narrative, Narrative]
755 words (2.2 pages)
- Introduction to The Lesson and Mid-term Break "The Lesson" tells the story of a 10 year old boy who has lost his father in the duration of school time. It goes on the say he's trapped and although he feels grief for the death of his father he realises that he can use the death to "bind the bullies' fist". "Mid-Term Break" is about the loss of a brother. It goes on to say that life goes on even though he has lost his brother and he witnesses things he does not normally experience (his father crying).... [tags: English Literature]
1855 words (5.3 pages)
- The Fragility of Life in Frost’s Out, out and Mid Term Break The poem “Out, out” by Robert Frost is a poem about a young boy who uses a buzz saw. When fate decides the boy’s time is up, the saw cuts the boy’s hand, and the boy slowly dies. The theme of “Out, out”, as well as “Mid Term Break”, is the fragility of life. “Out, out”, like “Mid-Term Break” focuses on the issue of God’s randomness in choosing who lives and who doesn’t. This fragility is emphasized, as the title of the poem is a line from the play Macbeth, “Out, out brief candle, life is but a walking shadow.” This way of portraying life as a candle, gives the impression that whoever guards this candle could just as easil... [tags: term out]
1841 words (5.3 pages)
- Mid-Term Break by Seamus Heaney Looking first at the poem written by Seamus Heaney it portrays a very powerful and clear message. I guess that it is set in Ireland, he gives clues of this throughout the poem and as he is originally from Ireland I think that it is a safe presumption to make. Mid-Term break an incredibly sad poem. In Mid term break Seamus Heaney's tells of the tragic death of his younger brother, who was sadly killed. Seamus Heaney describes in the poem of what he did that day when he's younger brother was killed.... [tags: Papers]
1242 words (3.5 pages)
- Midterm Break Interp “Mid-Term Break” Seamus Heaney’s “Mid-Term Break” is an extremely tear-jerking poem. The story begins and ends in a very depressing manner, while in between we are treated to a very vivid and blunt view of life and how it can all come to an abrupt end. While “Mid-Term Break” does use death to grab at the reader’s heart strings, the story is most likely a description of life in Heaney’s native Northern Ireland, not Heaney’s life, but a very general view of life in Northern Ireland, how it can all come to a screeching halt at the hands of others and for no apparent reason.... [tags: essays papers]
1190 words (3.4 pages)
- Use of Literary Techniques in Milton's Sonnet
- Delusions of American Society Exposed in Mind the Gap
- Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay: Inability to Love
- Dying for Love in Of Love and Other Demons by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- Love and Selfishness in Love in L.A. by Dagoberto Gilb
- The Unalterable Human Condition Exposed in Shirley Jackson's The Lottery
The structure of the poem is a blank/free verse, therefore the poem tells a story without rhyme, rhythm. This style suits the poem, as it has a somber mood, with a delicate touch of silence. Each stanzar says enough, in asimple text, and reveals much of the story; a reflection of life and death.
The style and language are both simple, yet distinct and therefore this helps to reveal the theme. The simplicity of the poem’s content is what makes it so descriptive. Innocence is within the poem… a childlike sense of death. With the unembellished language, such as phrases like “Next morning I went into the room,” get to the point and are absolute in its meaning.
The style of the poem uses a great amount of visual images, which are both detailed and stylistic, “Snow-drops and candles soothed the bedside,” contribute to the mood of the poem, the style, and most of all, the audiences perception and view. Onomatopoeia such as “cooed,” “whispers,” “coughed,” and “knocked” are used to express emotion within the poem. Heaney allows the reader to seem unlike a passive observer, but rather, a participant in his work. The use of onomatopoeia gives the poem a distinct and definate sound. The poem can basically be hear as well as read.
At the end of the poem the boy expresses death’s finality, “A four foot box, a foot for every year.” This is a hauntingly, beautiful poem, in which Seamus Heaney articulates the past with his poetry and relates it to us, today, in the present.