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The Clown Punk . Simon Armitage. Learning Objectives (AQA). AO1: respond to texts critically and imaginatively, select and evaluate textual detail to illustrate and support interpretations.

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the clown punk

The Clown Punk

Simon Armitage

learning objectives aqa
Learning Objectives (AQA)
  • AO1: respond to texts critically and imaginatively, select and evaluate textual detail to illustrate and support interpretations.
  • AO2: explain how language, structure and form contribute to writers’ presentation of ideas, themes and settings.
slide5

The Clown Punk

Driving home through the shonky side of town,

Three times out of ten you’ll see the town clown,

Like a basket of washing that got up

And walked, towing a dog on a rope. But

Don’t laugh: every pixel of that man’s skin

Is shot through with indelible ink:

As he steps out at the traffic lights,

Think what he’ll look like in thirty years’ time –

The deflated face and shrunken scalp

Still daubed with the sad tattoos of high punk.

You kids in the back seat who wince and scream

When he slathers his daft mush on the windscreen,

Remember the clown punk with his dyed brain,

Then picture windscreen wipers, and let it rain. 

Simon Armitage

the clown punk6
The Clown Punk

Sounds derogatory

Shonky = rundown

  • Driving home through the shonky side of town,
  • three times out of ten you’ll see the town clown,
  • like a basket of washing that got up
  • and walked, towing a dog on a rope. But

simile

Verbs of movement

Connective at end of

stanza

slide7

Imperative verb

  • don’t laugh: every pixel of that man’s skin
  • is shot through with indelible ink;
  • as he steps out at the traffic lights,
  • think what he’ll look like in thirty years’ time -

Dash at end of stanza

slide8

Alliteration and assonance

  • the deflated face and shrunken scalp,
  • still daubed with the sad tattoos of high punk.
  • You kids in the back seat who wince and scream
  • when he slathers his daft mush on the windscreen,
  • remember the clown punk with his dyed brain,
  • then picture windscreen wipers, and let it rain.

Mush = face

Rhyming couplet

re read the poem and think about these questions
Re-read the poem and think about these questions.
  • What sort of character is the Clown Punk?
  • What is his status in Stanza 1?
  • How do the children react to the Clown Punk?
  • Why does the narrator want the children to remember the Clown Punk?
rhyme and rhythm
Rhyme and Rhythm
  • The poem is written as a sonnet – 14 lines traditionally written in iambic pentameter.
  • Iambic pentameter – 10 syllables per line, alternately unstressed and stressed
  • Dri-vinghomethroughtheshon-kysideoftown

Unstressed syllables

in italics

Stressed syllables

in bold

re read the poem and answer the following questions
Re-read the poem and answer the following questions.
  • Why is the poem written as a sonnet?
  • Why does the poet use rhyming couplets?
  • What is the effect of the poet’s use of alliteration and assonance?
  • What is the effect of the final couplet of the poem?
slide12
Think of 3 questions that you would ask either the narrator or the Clown Punk if you met them.
  • List 3 things that you have learnt about the characters in the poem.
  • What is the most memorable word, phrase or line from the poem? Why?