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Mentone Girls' Grammar School | Kerferd Library

War Poetry: Carol Ann Duffy

Year 10 English | Language [VCELA] Literature [VCELT]

Source: Four Canadian soldiers, sleeping and writing letters in the trenches near Willerval. (IWM, 2019). Insert image: Carol Ann Duffy. (Scottish Poetry Library, 2019).

Level 1 resource"The ‘war poet’ and ‘war poetry’, observed Robert Graves in 1942, were ‘terms first used in World War I and perhaps peculiar to it’. From Anglo-Saxon times to the Boer War, war poetry in English was written largely by civilians and did not have a clearly defined identity; with the extraordinary outpouring between 1914 and 1918, it established itself as a genre and the soldier-poet became a species." (Das, 2014)

Referencing Notice Don't forget to cite and reference your sources. For help see the Junior School or Senior School referencing guides, and / or CiteMaker.
Resource Key

When accessing content use the numbers below to guide you:

LEVEL

Brief, basic information laid out in an easy-to-read format. May use informal language. (Includes most news articles)

LEVEL

Provides additional background information and further reading. Introduces some subject-specific language.

Level 3 resourceLEVEL

Lengthy, detailed information. Frequently uses technical/subject-specific language. (Includes most analytical articles)

General Capabilities
Enduring Understandings
  • Students will understand that poetry is a deliberate form of language where structural and linguistic features combine to create meaning.
  • Students will understand that the poetry of war has a long tradition in literature.
  • Students will understand that meaning may change depending on the context, culture and linguistic understanding of the reader.
Essential Questions
  • How is poetry different to prose?
  • How can we create meaning with language?

Jump toJump to: Quick facts | Articles | eBooks | Poems

War Poetry | Carol Ann Duffy: Quick facts

Carol Ann Duffy. Photography taken for the Lancaster Litfest on July 1, 2010. © Lancaster Litfest
Level 1Carol Ann Duffy (23 December 1955 - present)
  • Born in England on 23 December 1955.
  • Caroll Ann Duffy is a playwright as well as a poet
  • She was appointed as the first female Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom on 1 May 2009. The position of Poet Laureate was formally established in 1668.
  • In 2009 Duffy was commissioned by the BBC to write the poem "Last Post" to mark the deaths of Henry Allingham and Harry Patch, two of the last three surviving British veterans from the First World War. (BBC, 2009, August 6)

War Poetry | Carol Ann Duffy: Articles

Level 2Articles

War Poetry | Carol Ann Duffy:

Using YouTube on campus help and instructions
In this section you will find the poem as well as online content that provides additional background information and literary criticism. Scroll down to see all the content.

Last Post

by Carol Ann Duffy

'In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.'

If poetry could tell it backwards, true, begin
that moment shrapnel scythed you to the stinking mud…
but you get up, amazed, watch bled bad blood
run upwards from the slime into its wounds;
see lines and lines of British boys rewind
back to their trenches, kiss the photographs from home-
mothers, sweethearts, sisters, younger brothers
not entering the story now
to die and die and die.
Dulce- No- Decorum- No- Pro patria mori.
You walk away.

You walk away; drop your gun (fixed bayonet)
like all your mates do too-
Harry, Tommy, Wilfred, Edward, Bert-
and light a cigarette.
There's coffee in the square,
warm French bread
and all those thousands dead
are shaking dried mud from their hair
and queuing up for home. Freshly alive,
a lad plays Tipperary to the crowd, released
from History; the glistening, healthy horses fit for heroes, kings.

You lean against a wall,
your several million lives still possible
and crammed with love, work, children, talent, English beer, good food.
You see the poet tuck away his pocket-book and smile.
If poetry could truly tell it backwards,
then it would.

 

Source: Duffy, C.A. (2009) Last Post. Retrieved from https://www.thepoetryexchange.co.uk/last-post-carol-ann-duffy


Level 1 resourceFilm and videoTo view this video on campus remember to first login to your school Google account using your mConnect username and password. Click here for more help on using YouTube on campus.

Source

When using this video don't forget to cite and reference your sources. For more information and help see the Kerferd Library referencing guide and / or CiteMaker.

In text citation: (McClure, 2013) or McClure (2013)
Bibliography / Reference list:McClure, V. (2013). Last Post by Carol Ann Duffy: Read by Vicky McClure. Channel 4. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/eItm1xbAwoo

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