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Piano PowerPoint Presentation


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  1. Piano By D.H Lawrence (from Unseen Poetry and Prose – Suzanne Choo)

  2. Speaker’s childhood • Speakers listens to piano and recalls his past • Belongs to warm and stable family • “old Sunday evenings … with winter outside” • Contrast used to amplify security felt in warm home setting • Family sang hymns together indicates union of its members • Strong Christian background shows stability

  3. Speaker’s childhood • Close relationship with mother • Poem begins with recollection of his mother • Misses her and recalls how he used to sit and loved to be in her presence – posture of security • “pressing the small, poised feet” shows sense of touch and closeness • Aura around her of grace and beauty • Adoration and admiration –watches her as she plays

  4. Mood of the poem • 1st stanza – nostalgic • Recalling past and cozy atmosphere • Metaphor “the vista of years” compares the events of his life to a long road indicating how far in time he is recalling

  5. Sound devises and imagery to convey mood • Repetition of the ‘s’ consonant in phrase “who smiles as she sings” complements the soft, gentle music of the piano • Sense of sadness created as he misses her • Onomatopoeia used in the lines “the boom of the tingling strings” • Contrast clear tingling of piano to loud booming background • Shows gentle, peaceful atmosphere of the security of home

  6. Imagery to convey mood • Nostalgia intensifies • “the insidious mastery of song” indicates the overwhelming power of the music • “till the heart of me weeps”shows the extent of his being moved by his memories • Mood is depressing and sad as tone intensifies to a passionate cry for his lost past

  7. Imagery to convey mood • Climax “I weep like a child for the past” (simile) • Unable to control emotions any longer and breaks down • Speaker compares himself to a child, shows openness and childlike sincerity • Stuck in the present but like the child, he longs to return to security and warmth of his past

  8. Childhood termed as glamour • “Glamour” suggests beauty and grace • Childhood is glamorous because it is one of security and beauty • ‘Grace’ refers to the graceful quality of the speaker’s mother • Delicate and fragile frame complements singing and tingling sounds

  9. Childhood termed as glamour • Last two lines are ironic • Recalls glamorous past yet breaks down crying loudly • “So now it is vain for the singer to burst into clamour” indicates crying that is so loud and boisterous that it overpowers singing and background music. • Overwhelming longing – tears compared to ‘flood’ and ‘cast’ indicates strength of his emotion destroying his façade of pride

  10. Title of Piano • Instrument which links speaker’s present to his past • Symbolic of 2 main things he longs for in his past: • His mother. Recalls security and warmth of her presence. Admires her for her grace and beauty. Strong respect for her. • Cozy, warm atmosphere of home. ‘Child’ repeated, desires simplicity and innocence.

  11. ‘Betrays’ reflecting speaker’s attitude • Strong word indicating sense of frustration • Unable to stop himself from recalling his past • Shows how overwhelming, how deep, his longing to return to his past is • Suggests how different and perhaps how unhappy his present life is compared to his past • “In spite of myself” – lack of self control • “Insidious mastery” – subtle effect of music