The sun rising, J Donne

Tags: narrator, Cousin Kate, John Donne Developing, Christina Rossetti, The lord, narrative poem, response, parent/child relationship, Shakespeare, response Activity, Sonnet 18 by William Shakespeare, John Donne, written in response
Content: A
Exploring the poems
My Learning Objectives to explore the themes of the poem, including love to develop my response to Donne's poem to assess my work on Donne's poem against the criteria in Assessment Objective 2 (page 134).
The Sun Rising
by John Donne
First thoughts
Activity 1
In `The Sun Rising', Donne creates an argument about the power of love that follows three steps:
GradeStudio Examiner tips You can achieve a high grade if you: make detailed reference to the language and ideas Donne uses to convey the narrator's thoughts use well-chosen quotations from the poem to support your points on theme, content, language and structure explore comparisons and links that you can make between this love poem and other texts with similar themes. Poem Glossary Busy: nosy Saucy: cheeky Pedantic: fussy Chide: tell o Sour: miserable Prentice: apprentice O ces: jobs
1 The sun has woken Donne and his lover, and he wishes it would go away.
2 Their love is like ­ but even greater than ­ a whole world.
3 Therefore by shining on their bedroom, the sun is shining on the whole world.
1 Identify which part of the poem presents which part of each argument. 2 Which adjectives best describe Donne's argument in this poem: · romantic · ridiculous · arrogant · logical · something else?
Looking more closely
Activity 2
1 Donne personifies the sun (treats it as if it were A person). He calls it: `Busy old fool' `unruly' `Saucy pedantic wretch' a What does this language choice suggest about his attitude to the sun? b Donne tells the sun to stop bothering them, and to do some of its everyday work instead: `chide / Late school-boys' and `Call country ants to harvest offices' What does this suggest about the poet's view of himself and his lover? 2 Donne says that he could: `eclipse and cloud' the sun's beams `with a wink' but he does not want to lose sight of his lover for so long. a What does this suggest about his relationship with his lover? b What does it suggest about the power that he feels love has given him? 3 Donne tells the sun to look around the world, `If her eyes have not blinded thine'. What does this suggest about his lover?
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The Sun Rising by John Donne
Developing your ideas In this poem, Donne takes the poetic genre of the aubade ­ in which lovers who must part at dawn say a sad goodbye ­ and transforms it into an argument against the dawn. 1 One technique Donne uses is hyperbole (exaggeration). a Find at least three examples of hyperbole. b Quote each one and write a short explanation of its effect. 2 Donne also uses the technique of a conceit (an extended metaphor that finds a surprising resemblance between two very different things). a To what does Donne compare himself and his lover? b What is strange and surprising about this? c Compare this with Donne's earlier abuse and mockery of the sun. What is the effect of these contrasting attitudes? 3 At the start of the poem, Donne takes an angry tone with the sun. By the end, the tone has changed: Donne is inviting the sun to shine on his world. a Why does Donne think the sun is `half as happy as we'? b Donne says to the sun `Thine age asks ease'. What does he mean by this? c What does this change in tone suggest about his attitude to the sun? Developing a personal response 1 Is this poem about the arrogance and self-importance of the poet? Or the power of love? Look particularly at the last stanza. Choose at least one quotation and write a sentence or two explaining your answer. 2 What does this poem suggest to you about the power of love? · Love is more powerful than the world's rulers, the sun, or anything. · Love makes people feel more important than they really are. · Love makes people feel good. · Lovers do not want to be disturbed in the morning. · Something else.
Activity 3 Activity 4
Peer/Self-assessment 1 Answer true or false to the following statements. I can nd evidence for and comment on: a Donne's anger at the sun b why Donne compares himself and his lover to the world and its rulers c why Donne welcomes the sun at the end of the poem d what this poem suggests to me about lovers and love e my response to the poem.
2 If you answered `false' to any statements, compare your ideas with a partner's. Look again at the poem and your answers to the questions on these pages to help you. 3 a Write two paragraphs responding to the task: How is love presented in `The Sun Rising'? b Look at the grade descriptors on pages 148­155. What grade would you award your response?
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A
Exploring the poems
My learning objectives to explore the themes of the poem, including love to develop my response to Rossetti's poem to assess my work on Rossetti's poem against the criteria in Assessment Objective 2 (page 134). GradeStudio Examiner tips You can achieve a high grade if you: make detailed reference to the ideas, language and structure Rossetti uses to convey the narrator's thoughts and viewpoint, and to create the poem's mood use well-chosen quotations from the poem to support your points on theme, content, language and structure explore comparisons and links that you can make between this poem of love and rejection and other texts with similar themes. Poem Glossary Flaxen: fair, blonde Mean estate: a life of poverty Coronet: small crown worn by a nobleman
Cousin Kate
by Christina Rossetti
First thoughts
Activity 1
1 `Cousin Kate' is a narrative poem ­ it tells a story. Place these key events in the order in which they appear in the poem. · The narrator is a naive country girl. · The narrator is seduced by a lord and becomes his lover. · The narrator has a son. · The narrator is rejected by the lord. · The lord notices the narrator's cousin, Kate. · The lord marries Kate.
2 The story is told in the first person (`I'). How might this affect the reader's reaction?
3 `Cousin Kate' was written more than 100 years ago. What does it tell you about attitudes to love, marriage and unmarried mothers at that time?
Looking more closely
Activity 2
1 Look at stanza 1. What evidence is there that the narrator was innocent before the lord seduced her? Why does she emphasise this at the beginning? 2 The narrator uses powerful language to describe her treatment and her reaction to it. For example: `unclean' `outcast' `howl' `spit' a Write a sentence or two commenting on the effect of each of these words in the poem. b How does this language choice contribute to the tone or mood of the poem? 3 An oxymoron is where two apparently contradictory words are placed together. For example, the narrator says the lord tempted her into a `shameless shameful life'. a In what way was her life shameless? b In what way was it shameful? c How does this oxymoron express the narrator's confused feelings? 4 The narrator uses contrast throughout the poem. For example, she contrasts: · her cottage with the lord's palace · what the neighbours call her with what they call Kate.
a What effect does each of these contrasts have? b Find two more examples of contrast and write a sentence or two commenting on their effect.
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Cousin Kate by Christina Rossetti
Developing your ideas 1 The narrator describes her treatment by the lord using two similes: `He wore me like a silken knot, He changed me like a glove' What do these suggest about the lord's attitude to her? 2 The narrator describes herself as `a cottage maiden / Hardened by sun and air' Similarly, Kate is from `mean estate', working `among the rye'. Why does this seem to add to the narrator's anger? 3 The narrator describes Kate's relationship to the lord as `bound' with a ring. What does this word suggest about her feelings? 4 The poem has a rigid structure. Most of its language is simple and monosyllabic (in words of one syllable). What kind of voice do you imagine the narrator using as she tells her story in this way? 5 The last stanza introduces a different kind of love. a How would you describe the change of mood here? b How does the narrator describe her son? c How does she think that Kate and the lord feel about her son? d The narrator does not tell us about her child until the very end of the poem. Why might the writer have decided to structure the poem in this way? Developing a personal response 1 The narrator says that, if she were in Kate's position, she would not have married the lord. Do you think this suggests: · she is jealous of Kate · she is glad to be rid of the lord · she is judging the lord in the same way that society has judged her ­ and making a point about the different ways society judges men and women · something else entirely? 2 a The lord is not named. How does this affect your response to him? b The narrator is not named either. How does this affect your response to her? Peer/Self-assessment 1 Write two paragraphs responding to the task: How is the love between the narrator and the lord presented in `Cousin Kate'? 2 Look at the grade descriptors on pages 148­155. What grade would you award your response? 3 What could you change or add to improve your response? Use the grade descriptors to identify the two things most likely to improve your grade. 4 Redraft your answer, trying to make those changes. 5 Look again at the grade descriptors. Have you improved your grade?
Activity 3 Activity 4 7
A
Exploring the poems
My learning objectives to explore the themes of the poem, including love to develop my response to Shakespeare's poem to assess my work on Shakespeare's poem against the criteria in Assessment Objective 2 (page 134). GradeStudio Examiner tips You can achieve a high grade if you: make detailed reference to the ideas, language and structure Shakespeare uses to convey the narrator's thoughts and create the poem's mood use well-chosen quotations from the poem to support your points on theme, content, language and structure explore comparisons and links that you can make between this love poem and other texts with similar themes. Poem Glossary Sonnet: poem of 14 lines with a regular rhyme pattern, often about love Temperate: gentle, moderate Lease: temporary ownership for an agreed price Fair: beauty Untrimm'd: unaltered
Sonnet 18
by William Shakespeare
First thoughts
Activity 1
1 In the opening line, the narrator wonders whether to compare `thee' (you) to a summer's day. Who do you think the narrator is talking to?
2 a Look at the first two lines. Which does the narrator think is better: `a summer's day' or `thee'? b In what ways is one better?
Looking more closely
Activity 2
1 The narrator goes on to list four ways in which a summer's day is not perfect.
`Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,' a How is summer described as less than perfect here? b Why does the narrator describe the buds that grow in May as `darling'?
`And summer's lease hath all too short a date:' c What is the problem with the length of time that summer's `lease' lasts? `Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,' d What is this metaphor referring to? e What is the problem with summer in this line? `And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;' f Whose gold complexion is the narrator referring to? g Compare this with the previous line. What is the problem now? 2 In lines 7­8, the narrator explores a problem with all of nature. a In what way is nature changing throughout the year? b In what way does nature never change (its `course' is `untrimm'd') from year to year? c As years go by, what happens to beautiful people and things? 3 In line 9, the narrator moves back to praising his lover. a Which word signals this change? b How does the narrator suggest that his lover is different from summer and nature?
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Holy Sonnet 17 by John Donne
Developing your ideas
Activity 3
1 The poem makes a number of references to water. What is Donne suggesting through the metaphor of water?
2 Look closely at this quotation: `Wholly on heavenly things my mind is set.' How would you describe Donne's tone as he addresses God in the first half of the poem, and in this quotation in particular?
3 Now look closely at this quotation: `But why should I beg more love' a How would you describe Donne's tone as he addresses God in the second half of the poem, and in this quotation in particular? b In what way has the tone changed? Why?
4 Look at the language Donne uses to describe God's actions and feelings: `ravishиd' `woo' `tender jealousy' a Would you expect to find these words in a religious poem? Where would you expect to find them? b What does this suggest about Donne's relationship with God?
Developing a personal response
Activity 4
1 This poem is both a love sonnet and a religious sonnet. What is the effect of the conflict between these two subjects?
2 a Has Donne solved his problem by the end of the sonnet? b Why do you think Donne chooses to end the poem at this point?
Peer/Self-assessment
1 Read this paragraph written in response to the task: How does `Holy Sonnet 17' explore Donne's reaction to the death of his much-loved wife? 2 Write a paragraph giving your own response to the task. Use the same structure as the paragraph on the right. 3 Annotate your paragraph using the same notes as the paragraph on the right. If you have forgotten to include anything in your paragraph, add it in. 4 Which criteria in Assessment Objective 2 on page 134 have you demonstrated in your paragraph?
Evidence to support the point
A clear point
Donne expresses his feelings at his wife's death. He says that God: `her soul early into heaven ravishиd'. He clearly feels that his wife's life has been taken too soon. The choice of the word `ravishиd' suggests Donne's intense anger at her death. It implies not only the violence of her death, but that Donne blames God for this brutal and intentional action. The shocking sexual overtones of the word almost suggest that Donne regards it as a crime.
An explanation of the e ect of the quotation
How language re ects Close focus on the poet's point of view particular word choice
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A
Exploring the poems
My learning objectives to explore the themes of the poem, including parent/child relationships to develop my response to Harrison's poem to assess my work on Harrison's poem against the criteria in Assessment Objective 2 (page 134). GradeStudio Examiner tips You can achieve a high grade if you: make detailed reference to the language and structure Harrison uses to convey the narrator's thoughts use well-chosen quotations from the poem to support your points on theme, content, language and structure explore comparisons and links that you can make between this poem about parent/child relationships and other texts with similar themes.
Long Distance II
by Tony Harrison
First thoughts
Activity 1
1 The poem is spoken by a narrator. Who is the narrator, and what can you detect about him?
2 What is the narrator's attitude towards his father?
Looking more closely
Activity 2
1 Re-read the first two stanzas and make a note of what you find out about his father and his actions.
2 What do you think THE RELATIONSHIP is like between the father and child in the first two stanzas? Explain how strong you think the relationship is and find evidence in the poem for this.
Plot this on A graph like the one below.
Strength of relationship
Time in the poem
3 Look at the last two stanzas. Do these suggest that the relationship is stronger, weaker or the same as you previously thought? Add your ideas to the graph, and select short quotations to support them.
4 Re-read the last stanza and consider why Harrison ends his poem this way. What point might he be trying to make about the son's relationship with his parents?
Developing your ideas
Activity 3
1 In this poem the actions of the characters
are very important; they say more about how
characters are feeling than their words. List
the actions that the father takes, and then the
son's, and comment on what they really mean.
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Long Distance II by Tony Harrison
The first one has been done for you: `Dad kept her slippers warming by the gas' What is he doing? Here the father is pretending that the mother hasn't died; this is shown by the fact that he keeps her slippers, and that he has them warmed ready for her to put on, almost as if she has just popped out to the shops. Why is it effective? The fact that he keeps such everyday objects is moving because it shows he has not really come to terms with her death. 2 The poem has been written from a particular viewpoint. It is almost as if the narrator is chatting with us. In which lines do you think the viewpoint is most effective? Do you notice it changing at any point? 3 Many readers find the last stanza very moving. Discuss your feelings about it. Why do you think Harrison chooses to end the poem with the words: `there's your name / and the disconnected number I still call.'
Developing a personal response
Activity 4
1 What have you learned about the narrator of the poem? How far can we trust his comments about his feelings?
2 One student said: `This poem shows that we are more like our parents than we like to think.' How far do you agree that this statement is relevant to this poem?
Peer/Self-assessment
1 Read this paragraph written in response to the task: How does Harrison present a parent/child relationship in `Long Distance II'? 2 Write a paragraph giving your own response to the task. Use the same structure as the paragraph on the right. 3 Annotate your paragraph using the same notes as the paragraph on the right. If you have forgotten to include anything in your paragraph, add it in. 4 Which criteria in Assessment Objective 2 on page 134 have you demonstrated in your paragraph?
A clear point
Evidence to support the point
The poem is wri en from an adult's point of view. The narrator is reflecting on his father: `You couldn't just drop in. You had to phone.' Harrison writes conversationally as if he is speaking to the reader; this is shown by the word `you'. He appears to show some annoyance because his father expects calls and does not like his son to visit without giving him sufficient warning. The use of short sentences appears to reflect his impatience.
Close focus on the writer's choice of words
The idea is developed and shows the poet's point of view
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J Donne

File: the-sun-rising.pdf
Author: J Donne
Published: Wed Jan 27 09:34:42 2010
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