Textual Analysis of poetry ("Gone" by Simon Armitage and "Nobodies" by Anna Adams )

Essay by Ditzyleo January 2008

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While both “Gone” by Simon Armitage and “Nobodies” by Anna Adams deal with the subject of death, they do so in very different manners. “Gone” deals more with the grief of one particular person while “Nobodies” is a far more general look at death, however both have the same message of “live life to the full” and convey this message by using various distinctive features.

The titles of both poems have more than one meaning, adding to the poems and their messages. “Gone” is a very short and quick word- reflecting on the suddenness of the wife’s death. It is also a euphemism for ‘dead’ suggesting the disbelief. The second poem “Nobodies” also makes good use of the title too. It has the idea of the inclusion of everyone as well as its play of ‘no bodies’, building on the ideas of everyone being important in life that the poem deals with.

In comparison, “Gone” is the less structured poem as it is written as the thoughts occur, illustrated and emphasised by the enjambment of almost all the stanzas. This adds to emotional feeling of the poem, added to by the word choice and imagery that fills the poem. Much like the title “Gone” much of his word choice has more than open meaning and is often short and sharp, as seen in the opening line “thump”. The onomatopoeic word has the association of the ‘thump’ of a heart, giving the first line a double meaning of the car’s movement but also of something deeper too. The idea of the heart suggests life and this idea is continued in the following line with the image of “the hearse shutting out the light”; which has the suggestion of extinguishing of life and is symbolic of...