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For Heidi with Blue Hair

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by

Anja O

on 11 June 2014

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Transcript of For Heidi with Blue Hair

Background
Fleur Adcock
For Heidi with Blue Hair
Fleur Adcock

Poetic Devices
No rhyme scheme:
shows the unconventional style, reflecting the theme of rebellion and individuality
Dialogues:
unconventional and vividly
Use of simple vocabulary
Loose Structure:
reinforcing the idea of rebellion
Punctuation:
brackets--shows the informality
Point of View&Tone
This poem narrates the story of a high school girl who were sent home from school because she dyed her hair blue--'not in a school color.'

It is told from a second person point of view (you), and it creates a unique poetic effect. It feels as if the poet is talking to you, and making you sympathise with the girl.

The tone of the poem is conversational and informal because Fleur uses mostly simple vocabulary and dialogues.

Who do you think is telling this peom?
Poem
When you dyed your hair blue
(or, at least ultramarine
for the clipped sides, with a
crest
of jet-black spikes on top)
you were sent home from school

because, as the headmistress put it,
although dyed hair was not
specifically forbidden, yours
was, apart from anything else,
not done in the school colours.

T
ears in
t
he kitchen,
t
elephone-calls
to school
f
rom your
f
reedom-loving
f
ather:
'She's not a punk in her behaviour;
it's just a style.' (You wiped your eyes,
also not in a school colour.)
- Kareen Fleur Adcock
- New Zealand poet and editor
- Born in Auckland in 1934, but spent her childhood in Britain (age 80)
- She studied Classics at the Victoria University of Wellington
- She has been a freelance writer (freelance: self-employed, not working on a regulary salary basis)
- Wrote "For Heidi with Blue Hai" during 1980s
- Has been awarded the 2006 Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry, becoming only the seventh female poet to receive the award in 73 years.
- In 1996 was awarded an OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire)
'She discussed it with me first -
we checked the rules.'

'And anyway, Dad,
it cost twenty-five dollars.
Tell them it won't wash out -
not even if I wanted to try.

It would have been unfair to mention
your mother's death, but that
shimmered behind the arguments.
The school had nothing else against you;
the teachers
twittered

and gave in.

Next day your black friend had hers done
in grey, white and
flaxen
yellow -
the school colours precisely:
an act of
solidarity, a witty
tease. The battle was already won.
Adcock was trained as a classicist and much of her early work emphasizes structure, rhyme, and meter. Since 1980, Adcock's poetry has changed. She experiments with different voices and speakers. Her themes continue to include ancestry/history, love, death, and childhood. Also, Adcock's poetry is characterized by her experiences. In this poem, we can see her use of loose structure.
More facts about Fleur Adcock
Vocabulary
Crest:
Head or top of something.
Twittered:
To talk lightly and rapidly; chatter.
Flaxen:
Pale yellow color.
Witty:
Humorous or funny.
Solidarity:
Unity or a group of people with the
same interest.

Form and Structure
- Arranged in 6 stanzas (each stanza has 5 lines, overall 30 lines)
- Use of Caesuras (a mark of punctuation that comes within the line)
- Use of complex sentences
- Use of run-on (lines written that in the middle of the natural flow of a sentence)
Ex: "because as the headmistress put it, although dyed hair was not specifically forbidden, yours was, apart from anything else, not done in school colors."
- Shift in last stanza moves forward to the next day, shifts from argueing and fighting to solidarity and winning the competition
Theme
-Deals with independence and individuality; part of growing up
-Shows important relationship between parents and children
-Heidi; developed her own thoughts and personality with the support of her father
Figurative Language
- Uses imagery
Ex: "at least
ultramarine
for the
clipped sides
, with a
crest
of
jet-black spikes
on top"
- Vivid image of how she has styled her hair.
- Uses metaphor
Ex: "shimmered behind the arguements"
- Demostrates how they were all aware of the depressing
news of her mother's death and that it was a major problem that she was going through
- Heidi's hairstyle shows the rebellious and wild side of her character

Go back to poem for alliteration
Personal Response
Full transcript