I think that “Nothing’s Changed” is about the troubles in Africa and the fact that the black people and white people cant learn to love each other or at least realize that they are all the same.
Afrika writes about how the “black land” is nowhere near as nice as the “white land”. He also puts in the poem that there is no law against being with a white person if you’re black or vice versa he writes
“No board says it is:
But my feet know”.
This basically means that his instincts tell him not to step out of District 6.
The poet highlights many differences between the inn and the cafï¿½; he says that the inn is for white people and that they have
“Crushed ice whit glass
The single rose”.
Whereas the cafï¿½ only has plastic tables and you have to wipe your hands on your jeans.
The shape of the poem isn’t anything special most of the stanzas are 8 lines but there is one stanza that stands out,
“no sign says it is:
but we know where we belong”.
This verse repeats a line from the second stanza and I think the poet has done this to make the meaning of the poem stand out. It shows you all the way through that nothing has changed.
Afrika has used many poetic devices and things to help move the poem along, in the second stanza the first line is very abrupt
This tells you what the verse will be about then in the same stanza the poet repeats the word and at the beginning of four sentences for cumulative effect.
The first stanza is one long sentence and it has alliteration to make the sound of the movements he is making, also the punctuation affects the rhythm of the poem.
In conclusion I think that the poem can be quite confusing but the language tells the story and once you understand the whole thing it can be quite moving and emotional as the whole poem is about the misunderstanding the people in Africa can have.
Blessing is about the lack of water in a poor town in Pakistan and how when the people get water it is like a dream. One day a water pipe bursts which brings joy to the town and also brings them all together.
The title “Blessing” implies that the poem is about a gift or favor from God. The people from the huts feel blessed by what has happened. Also a lot of the poem uses religious imagery, in the second stanza it says: “the voice of a kindly god”, meaning that the water sounds like a kind person talking, then in the third stanza the poet refers the crowd of people as a “congregation”.
The shape of the poem reflects its meaning by the size of the paragraphs. The first stanza consists of only two short sentences “the skin cracks like a pod. There is never enough water”. It is so short to create the image of a deprived village in poverty. When the pipe bursts the stanzas get bigger and longer as each sentence follows on from the last.
Next I would like to look at the effects created by the use of poetic devices. Firstly, in the third stanza the water is referred to as a “rush of fortune” and “silver” crashing to the ground, this implies that the water is precious. Also in the last stanza there is alliteration for poetic effect it says “polished to perfection”, I think this is talking about the water cleaning the children as they play in it.
In conclusion I think that “Blessing” is a good poem and has some similarities to “nothings changed” but it is a lot easier to understand and the meaning of what a blessing really is is shown throughout the poem.
These two poems both have similarities and differences.
A big similarity is that they both show that people in poor countries struggle. In “Blessing” its because they don’t have enough water and in “Nothing’s Changed” its about the blacks and whites being separated in an unmerciful way.
A big difference they have is that in “Blessing” the poet has a glass half full approach to the difficulties the town has, whereas in “Nothing’s Changed” it is the complete opposite. Also this poem is more emotional in the terms of the fact that things should have changed but they haven’t and probably wont.
“Blessing” only has two stanzas that are slightly sad but they are only there to show what the poem is about. Although the beginning is sad, there is light at the end of the tunnel, which gives this poem more of a happy side.
“Nothings Changed” is sad but also angry at the same time, it makes you think of the rough times white people give to the black people.
“Blessing” Is an easier poem to understand and I think that’s why I prefer it but “Nothings Changed” really makes you think about the problems that the people in poorer countries or places have.
Both poems have strong points or meanings but at the end of “Blessing” you seem to think that the problem is over and that everything will be ok because the water pipe burst but in reality after a couple of days the water will be gone and the problem of thirst will arise again. “Nothings Changed” shows that the problem wont go away because there will always be racist people out there and that there is nothing that can be done.