Ted Hughes

Hi, today I’m here to talk to you about Ted Hughes’s poetry and how he structures the poems to affect the readers. He does this by creating different perspectives. In ‘the shot’ he creates at least four different perspectives which are: the personality of Sylvia Plath and her father Otto Plath, the effect these two personalities had on the relationship between Hughes and Plath and also on Hughes himself. ‘The shot’ has stanza’s which are all different lengths with the second stanza being the longest and the other two shorter.

Each of these stanza’s talks about different perspectives the first is about how Plath needed a god in her life after her father died and that she went on a destructive path after he did die. The second stanza goes on to talk about how anyone who came into close contact with her would suffer. Hughes uses a metaphor that she is a reckless bullet ricocheting around. The final stanza says that if he could have seen what was happening he could have found the right ‘witchdoctor’ to cure her.The last sentence is a change of tone saying only what he managed and lists her hair, ring, watch and night gown which are insignificant things. This shows how vague Hughes was.

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In the Minotaur Hughes uses an extended metaphor which is the Greek mythological story of the Minotaur a half man half beast that lives in a labyrinth. This poem actually has proper structure of 6 quatrains, most of his other poems have many different lines and the stanzas are all different lengths. It has a fast pace to it and that is because of the use of enjambment and not using a lot of punctuation.The first two stanzas’ are about what Plath did to one of Hughes tables. He writes so you wonder what it is that Hughes has done for her to be this angry. The last line in the second stanza tells us that he was only twenty minutes late for baby minding which is really nothing against her fit of rage she had.

What Hughes leaves out is why he was late. The next to stanzas he quotes what he said to her which brings it to life instead of him just recalling a memory. The last two stanzas’ are a extended metaphor of the story of the minotaur and the labyrinth.



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