Day trip to donegal

Forums Leaving Cert English Day trip to donegal

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    • #1386

      In derek mahon’s poem,day trip to donegal, can anyone please tell me their interpretation of the last two stanzas?what does the sea that washes against his head represent,and when he makes reference to being alone out at sea,making vain overtures to the vindictive wind and rain,to what is he referring?i’d greatly appreciate some help!

    • #16400

      here r some of my notes i collected from skool,ie for day trip to donegal hope they help u!!!!!!!!!!

      ‘the slow…sea muttering its threat to villages of landfall’ [Donegal]
      ‘Herring and mackerel, flopping about the deck
      In attitudes of agony and heartbreak’ [Donegal]

      Many of the Themes illustrated above are also lists of images e.g. images of place, images of people etc.
      Nature imagery is used a lot in Mahon’s poetry. There are some recurring nature images in Mahon’s Poetry.
      A good example is the recurring sea imagery.
      References to the sea occur eleven times in the poems on the syllabus:
      ‘We reached the sea in the early afternoon’ [Donegal]
      ‘The sea receding down each muddy lane’ [Donegal]
      ‘and the grave Grey of the sea the grimmer in that enclave’ [Donegal]
      ‘That night the slow sea washed against my head,
      Performing its immeasurable erosions’ [Donegal]
      ‘At dawn I was alone out at sea’ [Donegal]
      ‘Now I hide in a lonely house behind the sea

      There is immense variety of tone in Mahon’s poetry. Here are some examples to add to your own favourites.
      Matter-of-fact: ‘ things to be done, clothes to be picked up’ [Donegal]
      Gloomy and ominous: ‘Grave grey of the sea the grimmer’ [Donegal]
      Disgusted, fascinated: ‘A writhing glimmer of fish’ [Donegal]
      Bemused: ‘And still the fish come in year after year’ [Donegal]
      Resigned, mocking: ‘Give me a ring, goodnight, and so to bed’ [Donegal]
      Scared, pleading, ironic: ‘contriving vain overtures to the vindictive wind and rain’ [Donegal]

      Day trip to Donegal-the rhythm is musical with a varying beat pattern

      Apt use of language:
      Note how the strong verbs in this stanza from ‘Day trip to Donegal’ create atmosphere:
      ‘That night the slow sea washed against my head,
      Performing its immeasurable erosions—
      Spilling into the skull, marbling the stones
      That spine the very harbour wall,
      Muttering its threat to villages of landfall’
      The verbs ‘marbling’ and ‘spine’ are unusual, eerie and haunting.
      The verbs evoke certain characteristics of both the sea and dreams:
      Relentless; ‘washed’.
      Pervasive, invasive; ‘spilling’.
      Polishing, hardening or smoothing effect; ‘marbling’.
      Their insidious nature; ‘muttering’.
      The first three lines, with their sibilance, are an example of onomatopoeia. The consonance, created by the recurring ‘m’, reinforces this effect, as sound matches meaning.
      The overall impact of the language here is nightmarish, and perfectly achieves the stated of mind Mahon wishes to evoke

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