Catrin
This presentation is the property of its rightful owner.
Sponsored Links
1 / 16

Catrin PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • 120 Views
  • Uploaded on
  • Presentation posted in: General

Catrin. by Gillian Clarke. Gillian Clarke. Born in Cardiff, 1937 Speaks both English and Welsh Has three children, a girl and two boys Writes about nature/uses natural imagery Usually writes in her own voice (i.e. doesn’t invent characters for monologues as seen in Song of the Old Mother )

Download Presentation

Catrin

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Presentation Transcript


Catrin

Catrin

by Gillian Clarke


Gillian clarke

Gillian Clarke

  • Born in Cardiff, 1937

  • Speaks both English and Welsh

  • Has three children, a girl and two boys

  • Writes about nature/uses natural imagery

  • Usually writes in her own voice (i.e. doesn’t invent characters for monologues as seen in Song of the Old Mother)

  • You can find more information at www.gillianclarke.co.uk


Catrin

The poem deals with the often tense but loving relationship between mother and daughter

I can remember you, child,

As I stood in a hot, white

Room at the window watching

The people and cars taking

Turn at the traffic lights.

I can remember you, our first

Fierce confrontation, the tight

Red rope of love which we both

Fought over. It was square

Environmental blank, disinfected

Of paintings or toys. I wrote

All over the walls with my

Words, coloured the clean squares

With the wild, tender circles

Of our struggle to become

Separate. We want, we shouted,

To be two, to be ourselves.

Neither won nor lost the struggle

In the glass tank clouded with feelings

Which changed us both. Still I am fighting

You off, as you stand there

With your straight, strong, long

Brown hair and your rosy

Defiant glare, bringing up

From the heart's pool that old rope,

Tightening about my life,

Trailing love and conflict,

As you ask may you skate

In the dark, for one more hour.

It explores this idea through two separate confrontations: One is the birth; the other is as a teenager who wants to play out after dark

Although the overall meaning is clear the details of this poem make it more complex

Clarke says the poem was written in answer to the question, “Why did my beautiful baby have to become a teenager?”

First stanza is in the past tense; second is in the present. This could suggest the ever-present and continuing nature of their love

Two stanzas deal with their relationship at birth and in teenage years and the break makes the reader wonder what has happened in between the incidents

Gentle rhythm of the poem stresses the spontaneous nature of the poet’s recollections


Catrin

After the title the child’s name is not mentioned again. Perhaps because of the universal theme of the poem or possibly because it is so personal that names are unnecessary

I can remember you, child,

As I stood in a hot, white

Room at the window watching

The people and cars taking

Turn at the traffic lights.

I can remember you, our first

Fierce confrontation, the tight

Red rope of love which we both

Fought over. It was square

Environmental blank, disinfected

Of paintings or toys. I wrote

All over the walls with my

Words, coloured the clean squares

With the wild, tender circles

Of our struggle to become

Separate. We want, we shouted,

To be two, to be ourselves.

Simple language used throughout emphasises the simple, yet intense, nature of the emotions being discussed

The first section deals with the mother before and during labour

Personal side of the poem is emphasised by the use of the second person

Unnamed child possibly hinting at the universality of the theme

‘first…confrontation’ what does this suggest about the poet’s relationship with Catrin?


Catrin

The images of the hospital as sterile, ‘blank’ and devoid of feeling contrasts with the personal nature of the event.

She remembers the experience as being very clinical. Perhaps she felt the hospital stole some of the personal joy of birth from her.

I can remember you, child,

As I stood in a hot, white

Room at the window watching

The people and cars taking

Turn at the traffic lights.

I can remember you, our first

Fierce confrontation, the tight

Red rope of love which we both

Fought over. It was square

Environmental blank, disinfected

Of paintings or toys. I wrote

All over the walls with my

Words, coloured the clean squares

With the wild, tender circles

Of our struggle to become

Separate. We want, we shouted,

To be two, to be ourselves.

Again the poet contrasts the everyday lives of those she sees with the huge event she is waiting for.

Could also suggest the progress through life/labour as the traffic lights change

The clinical images also contrast with the more natural and flowing images of Catrin used in the second stanza

‘Red rope’ Given the context what is the rope and why is it red?

Red due to the blood but red is also the colour of passion and love. What images does this contrast with?


Catrin

Stresses the violent, painful nature of childbirth. Again Clarke uses contrasts to emphasise her point.

What contrast is used in these lines?

I can remember you, child,

As I stood in a hot, white

Room at the window watching

The people and cars taking

Turn at the traffic lights.

I can remember you, our first

Fierce confrontation, the tight

Red rope of love which we both

Fought over. It was square

Environmental blank, disinfected

Of paintings or toys. I wrote

All over the walls with my

Words, coloured the clean squares

With the wild, tender circles

Of our struggle to become

Separate. We want, we shouted,

To be two, to be ourselves.

Did Clarke actually write all over the walls?

What does this actually mean?

Her screams of pain could be the words metaphorically filling the room

Clearly this event was the inspiration for a poem. This one! Could this be the writing on the walls?

The writing’s on the wall is a popular cliché meaning things are inevitable. Could this suggest the inevitability that babies eventually become troublesome teens?


Catrin

‘We’ at this point the mother and child have become separate. They have their own wills which foreshadows the conflict that comes later on.

‘tender circles’ could mean the contractions of child birth. Again Clarke contrasts her choice of language with the reality of the event

I can remember you, child,

As I stood in a hot, white

Room at the window watching

The people and cars taking

Turn at the traffic lights.

I can remember you, our first

Fierce confrontation, the tight

Red rope of love which we both

Fought over. It was square

Environmental blank, disinfected

Of paintings or toys. I wrote

All over the walls with my

Words, coloured the clean squares

With the wild, tender circles

Of our struggle to become

Separate. We want, we shouted,

To be two, to be ourselves.

The desire to be ‘separate…two… ourselves’ is the same struggle which takes place later in the poem. The teenager’s struggle to be individual

Are these shouts of pain or of celebration?


Catrin

Enjambment also used here to physically enact the turning of the cars, making the image more vivid for the reader.

I can remember you, child,

As I stood in a hot, white

Room at the window watching

The people and cars taking

Turn at the traffic lights.

I can remember you, our first

Fierce confrontation, the tight

Red rope of love which we both

Fought over. It was square

Environmental blank, disinfected

Of paintings or toys. I wrote

All over the walls with my

Words, coloured the clean squares

With the wild, tender circles

Of our struggle to become

Separate. We want, we shouted,

To be two, to be ourselves.

Alliteration stresses the effort of childbirth.

The heavy breathing involved

Enjambment stresses the separation by physically splitting the words on the page.

The caesura following ‘separate’ forces the reader to pause and consider the impending birth


Catrin

Assonance and rhyme used to stress the strength of Catrin at this age. Pick out the sounds that have assonance and those that rhyme.

The hospital. What is the effect of the image of ‘clouded…feelings’?

Neither won nor lost the struggle

In the glass tank clouded with feelings

Which changed us both. Still I am fighting

You off, as you stand there

With your straight, strong, long

Brown hair and your rosy

Defiant glare, bringing up

From the heart's pool that old rope,

Tightening about my life,

Trailing love and conflict,

As you ask may you skate

In the dark, for one more hour.

They’re both winners but both have been altered by the struggle.

Clarke is a mother now whilst Catrin, although separate is still dependent

The struggle of child birth is the beginning of many struggles and battles throughout parent/childhood

‘stand’ stresses the independence of Catrin now that she is grown up


Catrin

The pool suggests the natural depth of parental love and is one of a number of natural images in this stanza which contrast with the clinical imagery of the first

Neither won nor lost the struggle

In the glass tank clouded with feelings

Which changed us both. Still I am fighting

You off, as you stand there

With your straight, strong, long

Brown hair and your rosy

Defiant glare, bringing up

From the heart's pool that old rope,

Tightening about my life,

Trailing love and conflict,

As you ask may you skate

In the dark, for one more hour.

Emphasising the constant pressures of being a parent. The constant care and conflict as a child grows up.

What is this an image of? Now metaphorical rather than literal.

This could also be seen as a metaphorical tug-of-war or even the parent’s battle to let their child grow-up.

Clarke says, “The invisible umbilical cord that ties parents and children even when children grow up. I was also thinking of the image of a boat tied to a harbour wall. The rope is hidden. The boat looks as if it's free, but it isn't.”


Catrin

What could these words suggest?

A desire to stay in the womb perhaps?

Could it suggest the fact that both parent and child are still ‘in the dark’ about each other?

Neither won nor lost the struggle

In the glass tank clouded with feelings

Which changed us both. Still I am fighting

You off, as you stand there

With your straight, strong, long

Brown hair and your rosy

Defiant glare, bringing up

From the heart's pool that old rope,

Tightening about my life,

Trailing love and conflict,

As you ask may you skate

In the dark, for one more hour.

Clarke choose skating after dark because it is an activity that shows that is “beautiful and dangerous to be young”. Perhaps highlighting the tensions of parenthood, wanting your child to be both happy and safe.

‘dark’ links to fears and could suggest both the very natural fears of the parents and the fearless nature of children

Clarke says, “I'm grateful to you for reading [my poems] and for revealing to me what you find. Poets write instinctively, and don't always see every possible meaning in the words they choose. If you find something, and prove it with quotations, then it's there, and you're right, and don't believe anyone who tells you otherwise.


Catrin

I can remember you, child,

As I stood in a hot, white

Room at the window watching

The people and cars taking

Turn at the traffic lights.

I can remember you, our first

Fierce confrontation, the tight

Red rope of love which we both

Fought over. It was square

Environmental blank, disinfected

Of paintings or toys. I wrote

All over the walls with my

Words, coloured the clean squares

With the wild, tender circles

Of our struggle to become

Separate. We want, we shouted,

To be two, to be ourselves.

Neither won nor lost the struggle

In the glass tank clouded with feelings

Which changed us both. Still I am fighting

You off, as you stand there

With your straight, strong, long

Brown hair and your rosy

Defiant glare, bringing up

From the heart's pool that old rope,

Tightening about my life,

Trailing love and conflict,

As you ask may you skate

In the dark, for one more hour.

The poem is focused on the tense relationship between the parent and child.

How do you think this poem should be read?

Frustrated?

Angry?

Tenderly?

Wistfully?

Is this a poem of conflict or love?

If it’s conflict, who wins?


Comparisons

Comparisons

  • Cold Knap Lake

  • In both poems, life is magically brought forth ...yet Cold Knap Lake describes a virtual rebirth when the drowned girl is revived, rather than an actual birth.

  • Both contain conflict, but in Cold Knap Lake it is between the rescued girl and her parents, rather than between Clarke and her mother.

  • Clarke portrays her mother as a heroine in Cold Knap Lake. We are not told Catrin’s feelings for her mother when she forbids her to go skating, but she is unlikely to see her in such glowing terms!

  • The Song of the Old Mother

  • Both poems deal with the conflict between generations, but in Yeats’ poem there is no love.

  • (Do you think that the struggles that Catrin and Clarke have experienced together actually increased their love?).

  • Both are written from the mother’s point of view.

  • Catrin has a looser structure, while The Song is tightly structured. What could this suggest?


Comparisons1

Comparisons

  • The Affliction of Margaret

  • Both poems are from the mother’s point of view and show that motherhood can be painful.

  • Yet while Margaret laments because she does not know what has happened to her beloved Son; Clarke suffers because of the tension between her and Catrin.

  • Both compare the child they knew (Margaret’s the Young One) with the grown child; both show their pride in their offspring. Margaret’s son was among the prime in worth, Catrin has a rosy, Defiant glare.

  • There is a sense of mystery in Wordsworth’s poem, as no one knows the fate of the son; we pity Margaret. We sense the warmth in Clarke’s relationship with Catrin, however.


Comparisons2

Comparisons

  • Digging

  • Both poems are intensely personal

  • Both poems deal with the bonds between the generations - in Clarke's poem a mother addresses her child, while in Heaney's a son talks about his father and grandfather.

Much of Heaney’s poetry is about parent/child relationships and growing up.

Choose one poem we have studied and list the similarities and differences between it and Catrin.


Review

Review

  • As you read the poem, do you identify with the mother or the daughter or do you see things from both viewpoints?

  • How far do you think this poem depicts the relationship of parents and children like it is? Is it different for fathers and sons?

  • Should the mother have let her daughter go skating in the dark? Are parents too protective? Would you (will you) allow your children to take more risks?


  • Login