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The Flood. John Clare. John Clare. John Clare (13 July 1793 – 20 May 1864) was an English poet, the son of a farm labourer, who came to be known for his celebratory representations of the English countryside and his lamentation of its disruption.

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The flood

The Flood

John Clare


John clare
John Clare

  • John Clare (13 July 1793 – 20 May 1864) was an English poet, the son of a farm labourer, who came to be known for his celebratory representations of the English countryside and his lamentation of its disruption.

  • Was in an asylum from 1837-1841, had bouts of severe depression

  • Knownas The Northamptonshire Peasant Poet

  • Had alcohol problems


Structure
Structure

  • No punctuation- flow of uncontrolled thoughts

  • Irregular rhyme- irregularity of the waves

  • Rough sonnet form with iambic pentameter

  • Sonnet’s are often associated with death or love, therefore projects haunting images


Language
Language

  • The “winter floods” are personified – image of them ‘playing’ gives the impression of power.

  • “dashing spray” – Clare is glorifying the waves, makes the scene appear more dramatic and majestic

  • “shudder jarred the arches” – creates a more violent image, first suggestion of actual impact

  • “shock as stubborn as before” – sibilance used to create a sinister tone


Language second stanza
Language- second stanza

  • “More swift than shadows in a stormy day” – alliteration to show the crashing of the waves and the speed of their movement

  • “- all in vain” creates a pause that appears to be a reflection on the behaviour of the waves before

  • “- reels –” is stilted, shows the back and forth continuous movement of the waves


Language third stanza
Language – third stanza

  • “Like plunging monsters rising underneath” – simile that makes the waves appear more dangerous, “rising” symbolises the inevitable, unexpected

  • “ocean blea” – (blea is directly beneath bark of a tree) – reality or past memories being revealed or exposed


Comparisons
Comparisons

The Bight – violence within nature and what the consequences of nature can be,

“All the untidy activity continues, awful but cheerful” and “Like trouble wandering to eternity” – continuity in the loss and misery.

Binsey Poplars – images of destruction,

times of very little punctuation – conveys the lack of control over the situations.


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