Aunt Julia - Norman MacCaig Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Aunt Julia - Norman MacCaig Deck (23)
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repetition off "very loud and "very fast"

denotes AJ's vitality - full of life and energetic


repetition of "I could not"

denotes frustration that language barrier exists between them


dash (caesura) "I could not understand her -"

highlights the literal divide between them through purposeful break in the text


word choice of "she wore men's boots"

suggesting her hard-working attitude, function over appearance, practical, nature of the tasks she has to carry out as a crofter on the isle of Harris


word choice of "- I can see"

suggests how vivid these memories are and that they are sacred to him


word choice of "stained with peat"

reflects AJ's unity with earth and land/nature of the tasks she is required to carry out as a crofter


onomatopoeic "paddling"

mimics the movement of the spinning wheel being operated by her foot, regular and repeating rhythm


length of line 9 OR long vowel sounds in "while her right hand drew yarn"

suggests the amount of time the spinning process takes, showing she is hardworking and patient


word choice of "marvellously"

suggests a young MacCaig's sense of magic/illusion which shows how much he admires her


Positioning of the pronoun "Hers (was the only house)"

shows her significance to him since he feels this sense of security when in her company


word choice of "absolute darkness"

suggests how frightening the experience must have been yet he feels comfortable since even the crickets are regarded as friendly


personification "crickets being friendly"

removes feeling of threat by emphasising his proximity to the 'warm and friendly' world of nature


metaphor of "she was buckets/and water flouncing into them"

suggests her vitality even as she carries heavy buckets, spring in her step since "flouncing" is a deliberate and vigorous movement


metaphor "she was winds pouring wetly"

reflects AJ's strong and forceful personality, through comparing her to the weather that surrounds her


metaphor "she was brown eggs, black skirts"

traditional, pragmatic and domestic with same connotations of an egg - hard exterior with a soft inner


word choice/metaphor "keeper of threepennybits/in a teapot"

suggests her frugality since now an obsolete coin as well as her eccentricity, individuality etc


earthy colours "black" "brown"

reflect her unity with nature - she has spent so much time outdoors, she is starting to look like it


Repetition of "Aunt Julia spoke Gaelic" in line 24

suggests turning point in the poem when the tone changes to a sombre and full of frustration/regret


enjambment in "she lay/silenced (in the absolute black)

emphasises the fact she is now dead and highlights the contrast between her previously noisy self


word choice of "absolute black"

contrasts "absolute blackness" in stanza 3, to suggest that now she is dead, he feels sadness since black is normally associated with loss/bereavement


word choice of "with a seagulls voice"

emphasise her connection with nature OR her squawky voice and her desperation to communicate with MacCaig in the normal way families do


repetition of "getting angry, getting angry"

shows the building of frustration felt by her/the poet now that he is no longer able to communicate at all with her


positioning of "unanswered"

reinforces the frustration felt by them and implies that this will remain unresolved for eternity since she is dead