Terror

an afternoon nap

by Arthur Yap

‘an afternoon nap’ by Arthur Yap explores the lacunae in the modern education system and how it results in anxiety and stress in students.

The terror of the tiger mother lingers throughout Yap's poem right from the very first lines.

3 November 1984

by Sujata Bhatt

In ‘3 November 1984,’ Indian-English poet Sujata Bhatt shows how history plays a vital role in the process of writing poetry, and their interconnectedness.

A Stopwatch and an Ordnance Map

by Stephen Spender

‘A Stopwatch and an Ordnance Map’ by Stephen Spender explores the Spanish Civil War through the lyrical depiction of one man’s death. It is marked by a stopwatch, the olive trees, and the continued conflict around him. 

Air Raid

by Stephen Spender

Stephen Spender’s poem ‘Air Raid’ depicts the impact of the Blitz or German Luftwaffe air strike on the United Kingdom.

Amethyst Beads

by Eavan Boland

‘Amethyst Beads’ by Eavan Boland alludes to Greek mythology and the suffering of a child, Persephone, after she was separated from her mother, Demeter.

Ariel

by Sylvia Plath

‘Ariel’ by Sylvia Plath is a deeply metaphorical poem. It focuses on the speaker’s experiences during a terrifying horseback ride.

District and Circle

by Seamus Heaney

‘District and Circle’, written by Seamus Heaney, depicts parts of a journey, or of several journeys, on the London Underground.

Dulce et Decorum Est

by Wilfred Owen

Wilfred Owen immortalized mustard gas in his indictment against warfare, ‘Dulce et Decorum Est.’ Written in 1917 while at Craiglockart, and published posthumously in 1920, ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ details what is, perhaps, the most memorable written account of a mustard gas attack.

Inspection

by Wilfred Owen

Wilfred Owen’s poem ‘Inspection’ was drafted at a military hospital Craiglockhart in August 1917, and completed in September, under the influence of wartime poet Siegfried Sassoon. In it, Owen writes about the loss and cheapness of life through war.

Lot’s Wife by Anna Akhmatova, Translated

by Anna Akhmatova

This intriguing poem, ‘Lot’s Wife’, by Anna Akhmatova, translated by Richard Wilbur, takes an age-old story that has been passed down from generation to generation and tells it from a new perspective, that of Lot’s wife.

On the Day of Judgment

by Jonathan Swift

Jonathan Swift’s acerbic poem ‘On the Day of Judgment’ is about a speaker’s vision of the judgment day with Jove or Jupiter giving his final ruling on humankind’s offenses.

Passage to India

by Walt Whitman

‘Passage to India’ by Walt Whitman describes an imaginary journey that a speaker wants to take into fabled India. 

The Second Coming

by William Butler Yeats

Here is a summary and critical analysis of ‘The Second Coming’ by William Butler Yeats, looking line by line at what this poem is about and why.

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