The Violets Gwen Harwood Analysis

678 Words 3 Pages
With the passing of time, memory can magnify and distort what is important to an individual's life. In Gwen Harwood’s poetry, Harwood portrays these aspects through her poem, ‘The Violets’ and ‘Father and Child.’ The poems both represent time and memory in different ways which gives the audience an impression that everyone is different and memories all differ from person to person. It also shows that the lessons we learn from the past differ and are sometimes false memories.

As time passes an individual’s memories becomes distorted and sooner or later an individual will only remember what was significant about the memory. This is represented in Harwood’s poem, ‘The Violets,’ the poem emphasises what is important to Gwen Harwood and how time controls us. In the poem Gwen Harwood says, ‘...even when my father, whistling, came from work, but used my tears to scold the thing I could not grasp or name that, while I slept, had stolen from me.’ The line reinforces that time controls us and can be robbed from us while we sleep, but the line also shows that her memory is distorted due to the section that
…show more content…
The opening line being, ‘Forty years, lived or dreamed,’ emphasising how fast time can go but the word, ‘dreamed,’ highlighting that memories can seem like a dream and be distorted. In ‘Father and Child,’ we have a role reversal the father is now the one leaning on the child for support as the cycle of life continues this is presented in the quote, ‘You keep a child’s delight for ever..’ With allusions to Shakespeare’s ‘King Lear,’ Gwen Harwood shows the bond of child and father, “Be your tears wet?” You speak as if air touched a string near breaking point,’ this line represents her bond with her father and her father is like a King to her as he guided her through life as a child. Another allusion shows how time and death will catch up to us, ‘Old king, your marvellous journey’s

Related Documents