10 Mary Street Essay

How does Peter Skrzynecki use language and structural techniques to communicate the sense of belonging in ’10 Mary Street’ (700 words plus)

Through various language and structural techniques, poet Peter Skrzynecki in his poem‘10 Mary Street’ explores the idea of acceptance in the home through place. Despite Skrzynecki’s previous poems, ’10 Mary Street’ is centred on positive reminiscence of the family home and the relationships which he forged within it. This sense of belonging through location is challenged through industrialisation successively in the poem, arousing negative emotions such as anxiety.

The poem ’10 Mary Street’ captures the typical idea of family life through concepts such as daily routine, the garden and the house. It is evident from the beginning of the poem that the ‘nineteen years’ he and his family spent in 10 Mary Street was quite prosperous in the sense of work, family devotion and happiness. The poet’s use of similes, affectionate tones and inclusion in the first stanza, suggests to the audience a daily routine related to family life and security within the home, immediately crafting the idea of belonging through place. The lines ‘Hid the key / under a rusty bucket’ implies the belief that Mary Street is a safe and secure neighbourhood where residents feel confident enough to hide objects in noticeable locations. This in itself is a perception of covert belonging as to belonging is established through the belief of security among the members of Mary street. ‘Each morning, shut the house / Like a well-oiled lock,’ alludes to the idea of nineteen years of normality and order – a smooth and trouble-free existence. The locking of the house and going to school or work is a daily ritual which adds to the sense of connectedness to the home, and family.

Stability is created in the second stanza through the concept of daily routine and culture. The poet mentions various plants which are of European descent such as roses, camellias,...