Before you were mine. ‘Before You Were Mine’ by Carol Ann Duffy: Analysis 2022-11-02
Before you were mine Rating:
Before You Were Mine is a poem written by Carol Ann Duffy. It is a nostalgicically-charged reflection on the life of the speaker's mother before she became a mother herself. Through the use of vivid imagery and emotive language, Duffy conveys the speaker's sense of longing for a time before the responsibilities of motherhood weighed on her mother's shoulders.
The poem begins with the speaker describing her mother as a young woman, dancing in a bar on a Saturday night. She describes her mother's carefree and youthful energy, as she moves with abandon to the music. The speaker longs to be able to see her mother in this way, as a woman who is not yet a mother, but rather a young and vibrant individual with her own hopes and dreams.
As the poem progresses, the speaker reflects on the many roles her mother has played in her life. She remembers her mother as a young bride, walking down the aisle in a beautiful white dress, and as a tired but loving mother, reading bedtime stories to her children. The speaker recognizes that her mother's life has not always been easy, but she is grateful for the sacrifices her mother has made for her and her siblings.
Despite the speaker's appreciation for all that her mother has done for her, there is a sense of longing for the time before she was born, when her mother was free to be her own person and pursue her own dreams. The speaker wonders what her mother's life might have been like if she had not had children, and imagines her mother traveling the world or pursuing a career.
Ultimately, Before You Were Mine is a poignant tribute to the enduring love between a mother and her child. It highlights the deep bond that exists between a mother and her offspring, as well as the sacrifices that mothers make for their children. At the same time, it serves as a reminder that mothers are individuals in their own right, with their own hopes, dreams, and desires.
Before You Were Mine Poem Summary and Analysis
Then, over thirty years later, Eli catches sight of her daughter. They are obvious to tell which is which and the story does build up the full picture of Eli and her life as the book develops. I would have expected to be a lot more moved by the story and the characters but I wasn't and I'm not entirely sure why. Thirty three years is a long time to mourn. She becomes pregnant at the age of fourteen having been the idol of her mother's eye. Bring it on, I say.
The decade ahead of my loud, possessive yell was the best one, eh? It was perfect timing the switch gears and read a different type of novel. I'm not going to tell what happens. As the years pass Tommy brings home an abandoned kitten for Eli to smother with love. . Eli will do whatever it takes to get close to her beloved daughter — even lie. He not only shows her kindness, but never treats her as anything other than special and loved.
The poet seems to begin with the speaker looking at a photograph of her mother having fun with friends. . Life goes on and it seems as though everyone is unhappy, unsatisfied and just marking time. I felt like I kept missing bits! I also enjoyed the considered and intelligent use of language, which helped the story flow without tripping me up on anything that felt incongruous or inappropriate. But nevertheless, within only a few pages she had completely captured my heart, and I became as drawn into her story and involved with her emotions as if I were standing right beside her, or in fact experiencing everything from inside her own head.
‘Before You Were Mine’ by Carol Ann Duffy: Analysis
Part of me wondered about her marriage to Tommy. This story was heart wrenching, yet with a happy ending after so many years for the main character, as she kept on searching and hoping until her prayer was finally answered. This novel may find an audience that likes the story. With a family who practically aban What a sensational debut that was a pleasure to read. The author manages to touch your heart and soul like no other and takes you on a journey of Ellis self discovery.
I have a soft spot for cats too! But all in all, it was a great book! Fourteen year old Eli Bell had succeeded in turning her best friend from her, and disgracing her ma, pa and three brothers — Eli had found herself pregnant and although she was a kind and gentle natured girl, she was lonely. . In this story Eli is a 14-year-old girl who goes into labor and has her baby taken from her as soon as the cord is cut, with no choice of her own. Eli starts driving to this grocery store everyday, even though she doesn't buy anything, hoping to see her daughter again. I didn't question her decision not to tell her family who the dad was, because no matter who it was, they didn't care. Even the couple themselves are exposed in all their flaws: pickle-smelling, wrinkles and scars, explosions of temper and niggled spite, cowardice and petty theft.
Click here to hear an audio version of this poem. I found the characters and their inter-relationships real and believable, the emotions described were authentic and true to life, and the storyline was engaging and thought-provoking. I felt that the pace of the story was unequal throughout. The setting for the story is gently nostalgic: small-town and sepia-toned. As the book is engulfed with sadness, I was taken back by how the story evolved. It was perfect timing the switch gears and read a different type of novel. Years later Eli marries Tommy who is the only person to be kind to her.
In many ways, it is a heartbreaking story, one which affects you and is an emotional read. She keeps mementos hidden away from Tommy, who is also haunted by harbouring dark secrets of his own. Eli Bell, never recovered from the devastation of having a nurse take her baby girl away - walking out the room - seconds after her baby was born - never to return. The poet is talking to her mother, having seen a photo of her mother as a teenager. Obsession is a mean monster and the author intricately shows how it takes a hold of someone. Every reader can benefit from reading this book as it grabs onto your heart strings and pulls you in to compelling story that includes all aspects of family. Anybody in the community to show Eli some kindness of which there is none shown.
What follows is a tightly wound tale of hope, love, secrets and lies. . . The chapters vary from those written by a third person, those in Eli's voice to her daughter and those in Tommy's voice. I liked Eli a lot. At first I was reluctant to make room in a busy schedule, but as soon as I turned the first page I was hooked, and read it from beginning to end in 48 hours. .
Even if it means lying… While her husband Tommy must grow to accept his own part in the events of her early life, he can only try to save her before her obsession with the young woman ruins them both. Em Muslin describes human emotion perfectly through her depiction of Eli and her husband Tommy. This is a bit of a slow burn of a novel. All reviews can be found on my blog at 99. The bonds between a mother, any parent are strong and maybe a woman might recognize thirty years later her child. She seems able to both smell and hear the "ghost" of her mother, who is as "clear as scent" and "clatters" towards her.