Comparison between Tony Harrison's Long Distance and Jane Gardam's Stone Trees

Topics: Poetry, Metropolitana di Napoli, Madrid Metro Pages: 4 (1532 words) Published: March 9, 2014
The two documents we are presented with here both deal with the notion of bereavement and especially bereavement of a loved one. The first document is a poem, written by Tony Harrison in 1984 and entitled Long Distance. The second one is an extract from a short story entitled Stone Trees, written by Jane Gardam in 1983. They both intend to give us a glimpse of how different people react when confronted to the passing of a relative. Through two completely different approaches and using two different genre – poetry and fiction –, as well as different literary technics, they try to reflect the highly personal emotion that one feels when confronted to death. The poem entitled Long Distance is composed of 4 stanzas, in the three first stanzas, the poet’s persona tells us about his father’s denial to face the death of his mother with a tint of loving criticism. For example the fact that he still includes her into his daily routine as if she would come back anytime. In the last stanza of the poem though he – the poet’s persona – gives us his own impression on death and he seems to realise that he, too, cannot quite cut with the little things of everyday life. As for the extract from Jane Gardam’s Stone Trees, we follow a woman’s thoughts as she mourns her departed husband. She relates different moments she went through after his death and the story often looks as if she is directly addressing her husband. The link can be made here with the cultural notion “je de l’écrivain et jeu de l’écriture” as the two authors both seem to have found inspiration in personal experiences, and therefore those texts could be considered as autobiographical. We could wonder how Harrison and Gardam proceed into putting us as close as possible with their character’s feelings in order to provide the reader with an understanding of their experience. In order to answer that question we will firstly analyse the different devices used by the two authors in order to put us into their character’s...
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