Beach Burial Kenneth Slessor Analysis

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Kenneth Slessor, born 1901, was one of our nation’s first poets to break away from past traditions and adopt a Modernist style of writing. In particular, two pieces ‘Five Bells’ (written 1935-1938) and ‘Beach Burial’ (written 1942) both hold universal ideas, which make Slessors poetry speak to any audience. These ideas speak to me, a young person in the 21st century and make me realize that time and memories go by so quick. The sophistication of Slessor’s textual integrity in to these ideas are lifelong preoccupations which the artist remains loyal. Through Slessor’s choice of language, form and poetic feature, I believe he creates distinctive poetry of enduring value that goes beyond its original context, which was first influenced by American …show more content…
This poem has now transcended its original meaning to now demonstrates the battle of life and shows we all have the same inevitable ending, death. Slessor uses the auditory imagery of, “sob and the clubbing of the gunfire,” as a modernist characteristic to remind post modern readers, like myself, that even though this persona has taken the time to make an effort to put the soldiers to rest, though it might be in haste, there is still an active battlefield nearby and he is also in danger. This enforces the relentlessness of war and shows that these deceased soldiers cannot get their final moment of solitude, in the mortal world. This poem however is a standing legacy for all soldiers and those dealing with battles of their own. This realist style of writing found in this poem is similar to an earlier poem of Slessors, “Out of time” (written 1937), “sweet meniscus” referring to capturing moments in time and stepping back out of a moment to comprehend your surroundings. This poem illustrates how death makes war irrelevant, everyone who in enlists in war is signing for their death whether they physically die or the images are to horrific and there is emotionally dead. A quote I think that perfectly displays this is, “the convoys of dead soldiers come”. When I first read this quote Is realized it original …show more content…
This is an elegy to remember all soldiers living or dead and to remember what they sacrificed so that future generations can live a better life. This type of remembrance is seen near the end of the poem in the quote, “whether as enemies they fought, or fought with us, or neither, the sand joins them together, enlisted on the other front.” That Jargon of “enlisted on the other front” is used to show how they (the deceased soldiers) will be together in a suggested afterlife. This quote could also be seen as an allegory, suggesting Slessors agnostic beliefs. I found that this search for an afterlife is seen in the lines, “and tablets cut with dreams of piety” form a later poem of Slessors, five bells which I discussed earlier. This elegy is a standing legacy for all soldiers, it is now used to as a tool for families with lost ones at war, a way to hold on to

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