Kenneth Slessor wrote quite a few poems such as ‘Beach Burial’, ‘William Street’ and ‘Country Towns’. In many of his poems slessor uses lots of tactics such as simile, imagery, alliteration, onomatopoeia, personification and tone, to convey his message to the responder. Every of slessor poems all have specific themes, for example “beach burial represents a anti-war theme, William Street represents a theme of poverty and “Country Towns” represents the theme of slow moving and sleepiness, which can relate to the contemporary world we live, therefore getting a resource for students.
In the poem ‘Beach Burial’ Slessor creates an anti-war theme. In the 1st stanza, Slessor explains how sailors and soldiers are shot and killed and left floating in the water which he describes as “the convoys of dead sailors”. He efficiently makes use of rhyme such as “come” and “foam”, “under” and “wander”, to convey that life and dignity has all been lost, and it also creates an vivid imagery of sailors floating in the water and how they role a certain in the morning . Onomatopoeia is also applied in the opening stanza’s as it is again constantly all through the poem such as “gunfire and under”, “come and humbly”. These word combinations add to the sombre tone of the opening stanza by creating the stanza flow smoothly, it is the opposite of what to count on, it begins off with a gentle tone.
In the final two stanzas, Slessor describes how there was a sense of urgency, a sense of brutality this is shown by there is a person who has the “time to pluck them from the shallows and bury them in burrows and tread the sand upon their nakedness”. This particular person also makes crosses for them and writes “unknown seamen” which becomes smudged from the rain. This shows the loss of identity and honour.
In the final stanza, Slessor represents an anti-war theme of Beach Burial. Slessor, points out enemies killing each and every other, has robbed these males of time and “the sand joins them together” which represents unity and meet “on the other front” which is conveyed as the afterlife, heaven. Slessor is suggesting ironically all of these males have gone to battle “in search of the very same landfall” only to obtain it loses all which means in death. This also represents the loss national identity.
‘William Street’ is a poem which compares and contrasts about the beauty and ugliness of the red light…