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In The Snack Bar by Edwin Morgan -Analysis-
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, updated more than 1 year ago
over 9 years ago
In The Snack Bar by Edwin Morgan -Analysis-
made to get dirty and easily cleaned
greasy spoon cafe
nobody cares about the old man
little space (to care)
makes him a freak
not in use
more than one
connection to narrator
man and narrator are a team
not letting go
needs narrators help
"Face the stairs
start to climb
The writer contradicts himself
"That endless yet not endless waste of floor" "The faltering, unfaltering steps
the floor isnt endless
yet it feels endless because of the amount of time it takes to cross
the the mans steps are hesitating and failing
Yet not failing as of his perserverance to continue
Phrases with literal and metaphorical meanings
"No one sees his face"
Literally - no one can see him because of his hunch back forceing his head/ face towards the ground
Metaphorically- no one sees his face as he isnt known or accepted by society,
he has no friends for support
"The dismall hump looming over him forces his head down"
Literal - weight of hump is pushing his head down
Metaphorical -his life is depressing/ miserable because of disablities "looming over him"
"Dear Christ, to be born for this! "
He is perhaps calling out to a higher being to ask why this man is in such an awful situation
He is wondering why this man was born into suffering and relying on others
"His brooding reflection darkens the mirror but the trickle of his water is thin and slow"
The man seems dark strong and intimidating against the 'clinical gleam' of the bathroom
His urine reflects what he really is like- slow and weak
"White tiles and mirrors at last. He shambles uncouth into the clinical gleam
The man seems dirty and unclean compared tp the brightness and cleanliness of the bathroom
The bathroom could reflect society- not 100% clean but looks it compared to the man
Society isnt perfect but the man stands out as imperfect due to his disabilities
Use of Senses
"Hiss of the coffee machine, voices and laughter."
Losing one sense makes the others stronger
We start to become more like the man and more aware of the sounds around him
"Slidy puddles, ...table edges, peoples feet"
Again we concentrate on what is happening around the man
We begin to sympathise with him as he cant see these obstacles in his way
"Smell of a cigar, hamburgers, wet coats steaming"
Tells us tw
Tells us what cafe is like
Shows us that others arent helping as their too busy eating and smoking
Details of rain show us that today than usual due to the rain
It would be easy for him to slip and people not to take notice of him
The writer is concentrating his life to the mans- trying to understand the way he lives
of whole words
"And slowly we go down. And slowly we go down." "And slowly we go up. And slowly we go up."
Its as if the writer has said the first line but realises its taking so long to walk down the stairs he writes it again to fill the silence
and re-emphasises how slowly the man is walking
Has the same slow effect- shows the writers impatience
"inch by inch we drift...slow dangerous inches"
Emphasises how small the steps are
And also emphasises how long its taking for the man and author to walk across the room
"He climbs, and steadily enough. He climbs, we climb. He climbs"
Again emphasises how long its taking for the man and author to walk up the stairs
Makes it seem like climbing a mountain and that its never ending
Inches are small so walking one is never dangerous really
But to this man everything is hazardous & dangerous
"Like a landscape to be negotiated"
The space inside the cafe isnt big but to the man it is
He must chose his path wisely-- however because he cant see he must trust the author to guide him
"Like a monstrous animal caught in a tent"
He looks threatening and hideous
He looks as if he is trapped in his tent-like coat
Like an old circus tent that 'freaks' were put on display
"I want- to go to the- toilet"
Pauses or breaks in speech perhaps:
The mans disability affects his speach -or-
He is embarrased to ask for help to go to the toilet
He is nervous of speaking to strangers in case they make fun of him, hurt him or play a nasty trick on him
The hump isnt actually blind But It could represent the man -A Blind Hump
Connotations of 'Hump' is -uneccarary growth taking up space and time-
The man can be seen as an interferring waste of time
"Dismal hump forces his head down"
The hump is causing him grief because he cannot stand up straight to look at people when he talks to them
He cant keep his head up physically or emotionally
Because he doesnt have anything to be happy about because he cant do much
hard 'St' sounds
"He stands in his stained beltless gaberdine"
Draws attention to the mans dirty clothes
Suggests that there is no-one taking care of him at home
"He climbs with many pauses but with that one persisting patience of the undefeated"
In case our attention has wavered whilst reading- -morgan draws our attention back in
He is about to write the messege of the poem
hard 'C' sound
"A cup capsizes along the formica"
grabs readers attention
Just as the actual sound of the cup falling grabs the authors attention and makes him focus on the man
Makes us focus on the line
"Forces his head down
as if the man was a slave and his body is being controlled by a slave master forcing him into disability and dehamanises him
"A cup capsizes along the formica slithering with a dull clatter a few heads turn in the crowded evening snack-bar"
"Capsizes" is present tense like in Good Friday and Trio -makes the poem seem like it is happening in front us
"Formica" -material unique to basic cafes
Details of crowded cafe give even more realistic details
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