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Peter Skrzynecki, Belonging

In: English and Literature

Submitted By tdab
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“A sense of belonging arises from a connection with people and places”

An individual’s sense of belonging is a fundamental aspect of one’s life as belonging emerges from the connection between people and places, whether a bodily place or a non-existential place. The poems by Peter Skrzynecki, ‘10 Mary Street’ and ‘Feliks Skrzynecki’ highlights the idea of belonging in a way that depicts the sense of connectedness of various people in a cultural community and a physical place.

The poem, ‘Feliks Skrzynecki’ refers to how Peter Skrzynecki’s father felt like he belonged to his garden hence making his son, Peter Skrzynecki felt like he did not have any connections with his father. The poem uses various techniques to depict the feelings of the persona towards his father. The quote “further and further south of Hadrian’s wall” in line 58 is a metaphor as it represents the fictional barrier between the persona and his father. Hadrian’s wall was built centuries ago to keep opposing forces away from each other, not exactly that the persona opposed his father, but it gives the responder a context on how distant they were from each other, as if there was a wall that separated them hence making it hard for them to try to build a relationship. The effect of the metaphor is that it allows the responder to understand something similar such as when the poet tried to compare the Hadrian's wall as the barrier between son and father. This quote gives the poem a sense of disconnection between Feliks Skrzynecki and the persona, Peter Skrzynecki. The persona showed how his father, Feliks Skrzynecki felt this immense connection with his garden. In line 4, “loved his garden like an only child” uses simile as its technique to show how Feliks Skrzynecki felt like he belongs to his garden thus treating it like an only child, with care, gentle and putting effort into it regardless of what his family might have felt. This line uses simile to give the responders understand the way Feliks Skrzynecki treated his garden with all his might since it is one of the few places he felt like he belong to. This line shows how Feliks Skrzynecki felt a boundless connection to his garden and how he felt like he belonged to his garden.

The poem, ‘10 Mary Street’ depicts the feeling of belonging to a physical place as the persona describes how their house looked like and how it gave him and his family a place where they felt accepted for nineteen years before moving somewhere else because of the change in the environment. The techniques used in lines 44 to 48 “Kielbasa, salt herring. And rye bread, drank. Raw vodka or cherry brandy. and smoked like. A dozen puffing billies”, are listing and descriptive language to show the type of foods they ate when they we’re at that house every time a visitor comes by. These lines shows us how the Skrzynecki family kept their cultural heritage alive by celebrating it through eating foods from their home country with people from the same cultural heritage. The effect of listing and descriptive language in these lines is it lets the responders have an idea of the foods they ate that represents their cultural heritage regardless of the idea that they are miles and miles away from their home country and the culture where they live in now is different. In lines 49 and 50, ‘naturalized more.. Than a decade ago’ used reminiscing tone to show how the persona was reminiscing about the time he became an Australian citizen. The reminiscing tone in these lines remind the readers how Peter Skrzynecki felt like he eventually got a symbol that he actually belongs somewhere through being ‘naturalized’ as it represents being a natural Australian citizen, which means that he actually has a place he can call where he belongs to.

In conclusion, an individual’s sense of belonging arises from the connection with people and places. It is evident in the two poems by Peter Skrzynecki, ‘Feliks Skrzynecki’ and ‘10 Mary Street’ as both of the poems depicts the sense of belonging to a physical place and the sense of connectedness with people who have the same cultural heritage as the persona’s family.…...

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