The poet Seamus Heaney is describing to incidents from childhood. “Mid term break” depicts the sombre affair of a child’s death. “Death of a naturalist” on the other hand tells us of a happy event. Although the two poems are written by Seamus Heaney they are not alike, death of a naturalist for example is about a boy and his interest in nature at school. Mid term break tells us about a young boy and his brother dying in his family. The narrators of both poems are young boys who are both describing an incident from the past.
The narrator of death of a naturalist is describing a nature lesson at school and is linking nature to growing up e. g. describing the tadpoles turning into frogs. Mid term break is totally the opposite the narrator is a young lad from a big family and his brother has died he describes his feelings and the hardship he and his family are going through. At the beginning of Death of a Naturalist the mood starts quite low and down putting it uses word such as festered, heavy headed, rotten, sweltered and punishing.
The poem opens with an evocation of a summer landscape which has the immediacy of an actual childhood experience. There is also a sense of exploration in “in the heart/Of the townland;” which is consistent with the idea of learning and exploration inevitably leading to discovery and the troubled awareness of experience. It gives a bad image of childhood because you could relate festered in my heart, heavy headed, daily it sweltered in the sun all to humans all too us.
These all make out that childhood is bad and is not a good atmosphere for us growing up. The atmosphere in the poem Mid Term Break is of an unease and discomfort. It is as if the poet is in shock he sees clearly the things around him and almost as if sleepwalking notes them in a daze but cannot make sense of anything. He notices the baby too young to comprehend what is happening he is cooing happily and rocking in its pram. The content sounds of the baby a new life acts as a jolting counterpoint to the grief-stricken silence in the room.
Sitting the in the college sick bay counting bells kneeling classes too a close. One important word in the opening paragraph is kneeling because it means bringing classes to a close. “kneeling” also evokes remembrances of funerals linking this to the dark cold room of the “sick bay”. There are other sounds that help make mid term Break affective for example metaphor, onomatopoeia, alliteration and assonance. “Death of a Naturalist” is concerned with growing up and loss of innocence.
The poet vividly describes a childhood experience that precipitates a change in the boy from the receptive and protected innocence of childhood to the fear and uncertainty of adolescence. Heaney organises his poem in two sections, corresponding to the change in the boy. By showing that this change is linked with education and learning, Heaney is concerned with the inevitability of the progression from innocence to experience, concerned with the transformation from the unquestioning child to the reflective adult.
The poem recreates and examines the moment of the child’s confrontation with the fact that life is not what it seems. The experience transforms the boy’s perception of the world. No longer is it a place for unquestioning sensuous delight. It is a dynamic world of uncertainty”. this is an extract from another descriptive piece of writing by andrew mayers he help show to show growing up and a loss of innocense. The success of the poem derives from the effective way Heaney builds up a totally convincing account of a childhood experience that deals with the excitement, pain and confusion of growing up.
There are many mataphors in both poems there is one extended methphor in death of a naturalist which is simpely sensational it help give us an image of what the poem is about. The major extended methphor is about growing up and leaving behind the innocence of childhood. Although there is no similar extended methphor in Mid Term Break There is a high overall imperession of childhood. The boy does not know how to respond to the men and does not understand properly what is going on. The silence in the poem is broken again in the second line when whispers start to happen.
Also, this shows the men do not know how to respond to the boy and probably paused to find the best way of saying it to the boy: “Whispers informed strangers I was the eldest Always at school, as my mother held my hand” This shows how the silence is broken as people inform strangers that the poet is the eldest. This indicates that he is or was not the only child and maybe the person who died was his brother or sister. It shows he does not like to be the oldest as he has a lot of responsibility. What the poet is going through, as a boy is what most people go through as an adult.
It shows he is making the transition from being a boy into an adult man. Also it shows that he goes to boarding school as he stays away at school. The significance of the “poppy bruise” “snowdrops” and a “candle flame” are that take the flame on the candle that signifies new life and that the boy or girl is happy and is in a peaceful place. The narrator saves the information about a boy till the end because it creates suspense and makes you want to reed on to find out what is going to happen. Also it makes the poem look better and it gives the reader more time to think about the ending.
The ending of death of a naturalist is a happy and sad ending it is very describing of the frogs and the atmosphere around himself he also uses wonderful metaphors such as slime kings croaking and I dipped my hand the spawn would clutch it. Mid term break however ends miserable it describes the brother or sister that has died and how it happened the end I really were you find out what has really happened to the boy/girl. The mood is quite low and makes you sad. Death of a Naturalist ends happy though with you really finding out that everything is about childhood and growing up
The poem recreates and examines the moment of the child’s confrontation with the fact that life is not what it seems. “The experience transforms the boy’s perception of the world. No longer is it a place for unquestioning sensuous delight. It is a dynamic world of uncertainty. The success of the poem derives from the effective way Heaney builds up a totally convincing account of a childhood experience that deals with the excitement, pain and confusion of growing up. The final line stands out on its own.
Almost every word is emphasized so that the reader must take in the line’s message and the shock and deep grief that the family must have felt. There is an element of shock for the reader reading it for the first time also, when they discover who has died and that he was a mere four years old”. This quote/extract is from Andrew Mayer’s account of Seamus Heaney he hive a strong paragraph on the moment of the child’s confrontation. Mid term break is an incredibly sad poem. The mood is set almost immediately in the second line: Counting bells knelling classes to a close.
Notice how Heaney uses assonance and alliteration to emphasize the funereal sound of the bells and the feeling of time dragging. I love both of these two poems I think personally that mid term break I better as it offers a lot more in the way of emotion and feelings I love the use of symbolism in the poem. The poppy bruise standing for violent and untimely death just ties in so well. love this poem, as it echoes the different stages of grief. From the disbelief of it all, to when it finally sets in that his baby brother has died. I like the way Heaney has used the imagery of his brother simply being asleep.
As he finds it hard to understand that his brother, a young boy with his whole life ahead of him, has been hit by a car and killed. Death of a naturalist is also an excelent piece of poetry too as “Death of a Naturalist” is concerned with growing up and loss of innocence. The poet vividly describes a childhood experience that precipitates a change in the boy from the receptive and protected innocence of childhood to the fear and uncertainty of adolescence. I could realte mid term break because my grandad was killed by a car a few years ago.