Praise Song For My Mother

Mind Map by livvyeileen, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by livvyeileen almost 5 years ago


Mind Map on Praise Song For My Mother, created by livvyeileen on 04/01/2015.

Resource summary

Praise Song For My Mother
1 Grace Nichols
1.1 caribbean origin. small town called Guayana
1.2 married to fellow poet John Agard also from Guyana
1.3 moved to the Uk at 27
1.4 key themes throughout her poems: west indian folklore, cultural displacement, elements and nature and diversity and embracing it.
2 Structure and Form
2.1 poem is about the influence of her Mother
2.2 Praise Song--> African American song created to celebrate the life of someone. Can serve as a Eulogy
2.3 first three stanzas are very organised and similar in the way they appear and the amount of syllables
2.4 the final section marks a break in the staircase pattern and signifies falling off the edge into adulthood without the presence of her mother
3 Verse 1
3.1 You were water to me deep bold and fathoming
3.1.1 you were- past tense suggests that her mother s either dead or that she's grown away from her mother and the influence of her is gone--> broken relationship
3.1.2 deep- serious thinker/ physical depth/ strong and dark (colour)
3.1.3 bold- brave, un-fearing, not sure, over baring, not necessarily good thing.
3.1.4 fathoming- fathom is a measure of depth, fathom is to understand the meaning of something--> suggests her mother was hard to understand or that she always tries to work every one out.
4 Verse 2
4.1 You were moon's eye to me pull and grained and mantling
4.1.1 moon's eye always watching from above moon goddess--> represents guidance and symbolises moon + tides sacred in African American myths
4.1.2 pull-attract something, move something, injury or gravitational pull which suggests her mum has such an influence on her and that her mum has her own pull
4.1.3 grained- moon is patterned or small like seeds
4.1.4 mantling- mantle--> earths outer layer, protection
5 Verse 3
5.1 You were sunrise to me rise and warm and streaming
5.1.1 sunrise- every day, needs to happen
5.1.2 rise- wake up/ move upwards/ to get a rise out of someone is to make them angry--> her mother makes her angry?
5.1.3 warm- suggests she is temperate (has anger) warm--> get closer to, grow to like
5.1.4 streaming- flowing, continual flow, constant outpouring--> suggests her mother is constantly talking
6 Verse 4
6.1 You were the fishes red gill to me the flame tree's spread to me the crab's leg/the fried plantain smell replenishing replenishing Go to your wide futures, you said
6.1.1 fishes- no apostrophe for possession--> she doesn't feel like she belongs to her mother
6.1.2 red gill- gill is needed so a fish can breathe but a gill goes red when the fish is out of water and their breathing has stopped--> maybe she's suffocating, out of water, out of place --> maybe why she moved to England
6.1.3 flame tree- native caribbean tree that is red. Flame- anger, burnt. Tree- shelter--> sheltered existence and stifled childhood
6.1.4 spread to me- you've passed your anger/ family tree onto me so she's moved to england to get away from it all
6.1.5 crabs leg- crabs can only move sideways but she wants to move forwards so she leaves for the Uk where she can
6.1.6 fried plantain smell- plantain is a large banana but refers also to slave plantations so maybe her mother always brings up the slave trade and past but Grace just wants to forget it so she moves to england where her mum doesn't want her to be.
6.1.7 replenishing replenishing- huge gap suggests the distance between her and her mother, stairway destroyed and reference to her leaving for the UK
6.1.8 go to your wide futures, you said- lack of a full stop suggests the relationship is unresolved
6.1.9 wide- her mother thinks her dreams are too big and delusional so she's dismissive, bitter and aggressive
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