Friday, 22 March 2013

11bEn1 - 'Kissing' homework

Hi 11bEn1 (noisy class!),

'Kissing' is probably the toughest of the poems we have done so far, so it's worth taking a bit more time to deepen our understanding of it.

The poem focuses in two halves on the relationships between young couples, and then older couples. I personally think that Adcock portrays the young as shallow and lacking in passion, kissing only because they see another couple doing so at the lake, and so feel that it is the 'done thing'. The middle aged, on the other hand, kiss out of pure, unadulterated passion, taking nobody else into consideration.

Here's a few prompts to help you formulate your ideas on the poem:

1) How does the writer create the idea that the older generation are passionate? You could focus on structure or language.

2) What is the effect of the first and last lines of each stanza? Think about how they connect.

3) Explain the effect of the use of enjambement - which quotes add to this effect?

4) What is the effect of punctuation in this poem? Pick three examples and explain.

5) How does the writer portray the younger generation, their feelings and ideas? Give quotes in your answer!

6) Is there rhyme in this poem? Explain the writer's decisions with regards to rhyme.

This is due next Friday, 29th March.

Have a splendid weekend,

Miss D


  1. In this poem we can tell the older generation are passionate because of the vivid imagery used. The poem uses detailed description to create a vivid image in the readers mind."Their hands... locked so tightly
    together that it hurts: it may leave marks
    on their not of course youthful skin" The amount of detail makes the poem very visual, it helps the reader imagine the couple and helps to show how different and similar they are to the younger couple. The amount of detail also shows the passion in the older generations relationship.

  2. The first and last line of each stanza both have a theme of time and age in them. The first line of the first stanza talks about a young couple who have a big future ahead of them, the last line says 'they've got all day' meaning that they possess time and have plenty to fill. In the second stanza the first line talks about them ageing and feeling more passion as they realise that they don't have decades to go till they die. The last line says 'they too may have futures'. The word 'may' means that it's not guaranteed and they should enjoy the time left.

  3. Adcock use punctuation to add a lasting effect to the line. The colon in "locked so tightly together that it hurts: it may leave marks". The use of colon creates a pause insinuates pain of their love and also emphasises the hurt that they endure in their love. The brackets used in "(because of the driver)" separates the reasons which they have decided not to do the actions mentioned on the previous line and indicates that is the only implication why they cannot do the actions is because of the presence of the driver which is symbolised by the brackets. The use of the full stop after “which they won’t notice.” creates a temporary halt and adds tension on to the focus of them kissing. It also a caesura and implies that they are together nevertheless not alone.

  4. Q6
    In the poem Kissing by Fleur Adcock, there is no rhyme at all through out the poem. In my opinion I believe Adcock does not have any rhyme in the poem because she wants to make the poem serious and give the reader the idea that the poem and the subject of kissing is a serious topic. This in my opinion is because I believe that she see kissing as something that is full of passion and love, that has the power to begin a relationship of any kind. Therefore is not something to be played around with or taken lightly. Secondly I also believe that Adcock does not have any rhyme in the poem because she wants to show the reader that love does not have a set pace or is set or restricted by age. I believe this because if the poem had a rhyme it would have a constant rhythm. This would show that love is restricted by age and has a set pace. But by having no rhyme it creates the effect that love is ever lasting and so is kissing.

  5. This poem is all about passion and age between couples. The fist stanza is about a young couple who are kissing in a park,the final line of the stanza says,"they've got all day" this means that they still have the rest of their life's to be with each other. The second stanza describes a more older couple and it creates a vivid image of ow passionate the couple are as their hands are "locked so tightly it hurts", they they are squeezing each other so hard its to the point of hurting. Also in the last line it says "they too may have futures" this means no matter how old you are you can have a future with someone and this is what Fleur Adcock is trying to say in this poem.

  6. The fundamental idea behind the poem is to show that no matter how old a couple may be, that age is nothing but a number when it comes passion and Adcock showed us this by how they would "talk, stop talking, kiss.
    They can see no one older than themselves.
    It’s their river. They’ve got all day." This shows us and give us the image that they dont care about others when they're with each other.

  7. the poem shows that the younger generation are less passionate than the older generation as shown from the use of imagery. a quote which shows this is "Their hands...... locked so tightly together that it hurts, it may leave marks
    on their not of course youthful skin." the poem helps us imagine the couples and shows the difference and similarities between them. the younger generation lack passion, where the older generation are very passionate in their relationship.

  8. The younger generation is portrayed as having control over time as the last line of the first stanza says "It's their river. They've got all day". This shows that it seems as if the couple possess time as they are still very young, whereas the older generation "may too have futures" which shows it is not certain that they will be together forever as they are now old. Furthermore the younger generation is also portrayed as quite passionate as they do not pay attention to what is around them, only to each other. This is shown in the poem when it says "which two are clamped together mouth to mouth have forgotten about." meaning they have forgotten about the reality through only paying attention to one another.

  9. The separation between the 2 stanzas suggests the separation between the 2 generations; the young and the elderly. The first stanza is about young love and how their relationship is vague as there are no clear plane. The quotation "they've got all day" connotes that the young have possession over time.
    In the second stanza, the elderly are seen to have a greater maturity comparing with the young. The brackets between "because of the driver" implies that there is a barrier signifying that their relationship is private. The quotation "they too may have futures" shows uncertainty and indicates that they should appreciate their time together. This poem denotes that love has no restrictions regardless of the age or place.

  10. The writer portrays the younger generation to be less aware of things like how time passes by this is shown when Adcock says "They've got all day." the fact that he's said "all day" suggests that they think because they're younger they have forever and no matter how much time passes they will always be the same. The younger generation also don't know the full meaning of love therefore they're not bothered if what they happen to call 'love' only lasts a day for them it's an experience that they don't really take seriously and it will come by again.

  11. In this poem, Fleur Adcock does not use any rhyme scheme whatsoever. I think this is because in a relationship, there is no specific way things are going to happen and that things are to be unexpected.

    Also the fact that she says that the young couple 'They've got all day' and that about the older couple that 'they too may have futures' shows that the young couple have possession of time and can do what they please with it whereas with the older couple it is conditional and that it is not certain that they will have a future together.

    However, the fact that the young couple have all day may mean that they could only last a day whereas the older couple could have a long term future together.

  12. 1. In the poem "Kissing" You can tell that the older generation are passionate as Adock describes their hands are "locked so tightly it hurts". This suggests they're clinging on to each other trying to hold on to what time they may or may not have left together. While they may have physically aged, their love remains untouched by time, their passion is ever lasting and unchancing.

  13. The writer portrays the younger couple's love as shallow and fleeting. This can be seen in the quote "They've got all day.". The phrase 'all day' shows that for them, a day feels like forever, but for everyone else it is a short amount of time. This is contrasted with the portrayal of the older couple's love that is seen to be deep and permanent. This can be seen in the quote "locked so tightly together that it hurts". This quote show that they know the pain of love; they have experienced it before. Furthermore, the older couple's love can be seen as desperate; they are clinging on to it before they get too old, as shown by the word "locked". On the other hand the younger couple's love can be seen as leisurely, emphasised by the words "all day".

  14. The writer creates the idea that the older generation are passionate as the poet uses more adjectives, the poet goes into more description as he describes the passion in which the older generation felt for each other as they're getting any younger so every moment they spend together is special as they never know when their happiness will end. The poet uses the older generation as a symbol to show that your never to old for love and that you never know what can.

  15. In the poem, Adcock gives the reader the idea that the younger generation that are in love are in their own little world, and that as long as they are in love they have all the time they would ever need; "They can see no one older than themselves. It's their river. They've got all day". In saying "It's their river", Adcock suggests to the reader that they've been there all day together, so in essence they've 'claimed' it, and will be there "all day".