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Strange Fruit Poetry Lesson
Transcript of Strange Fruit Poetry Lesson
Circle the adjectives in the poem and decide in pairs:
What the writer is really describing
Feedback to class
What might the writer feel about the‘strange fruit’ and what might they want you to feel?
Make bullet points – minimum two – can you make three?
To analyse the power of emotions in poetry
To explore values and attitudes of a writer through their word choices and imagery
To understand how poetry can change the world!
In 1999, Time magazine called it their song of the century Strange Fruit Choose one of these images and use it to write a simile and a metaphor to describe a feeling Southern trees bear strange fruit,
Blood on the leaves and blood at the root,
Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze,
Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees.
Pastoral scene of the gallant south,
The bulging eyes and the twisted mouth,
Scent of magnolias, sweet and fresh,
Then the sudden smell of burning flesh.
Here is fruit for the crows to pluck,
For the rain to gather, for the wind to suck,
For the sun to rot, for the trees to drop,
Here is a strange and bitter crop. Extension: Can you work out the message of the story?
The Mood of the Poem Now underline the verbs of the poem – e.g. ‘bear’ (carry a load) ‘swinging’
Write down the impression the verbs give you – start with positive or negative, name a connotation of the word (what the word suggests)
Can you sum up the overall feeling about the poem? What word would you use?
Share your ideas with your partner – do you agree? (7 mins)
Writing task Write a short essay explaining the main ideas in the poem – use quotes from the poem as evidence for your interpretations, and explain your reasons in detail. (Level 5)
Comment on how the imagery is used and what effect is created. Try to explain the ‘mood’of the poem e.g. if you think it has a ‘dark’ atmosphere, what words created this impression for you? (Level 6)
Analyse the word choices and explore some of the patterns and links in the poem – look at juxtaposition of words and ideas, openings and endings. (Level 7)