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Comparison Poem 'Octopus' And An Article In The Toronto Globe And Mail

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Comparative Commentary

In this commentary I will compare the Poem 'Octopus' by Pat Lowther (text A) to the article in the Toronto Globe an Mail written by Anne Mcllroy (text B). The theme of both texts is the same, namely how we can learn from animals. In text A the writer focuses on the Octopus, whereas text B gives a number of short descriptions of different animals. In both texts the animals is compared to a machine. For example in text A "like a machine dreamed by Leonardo", an example which you can find in text B is the fact that the unique eardrums of the parasitic fly are being compared to a possible hearing aid in the future. Both texts show the functional aspects of these animals, by showing this functional aspect both writers express a lot of admiration. Another thing which these two texts have in common is the fact that they both contain movement. In text A the octopus starts, after being at rest, to move in the second stanza. In text B there's also a kind of movement described, in this case it's the movement of technology. It shows that the technology will always develop new things, that it is a moving process.

The two texts are written for a different purpose. Text A is a poem and it especially tries to amuse the reader, while text B is an article which gives you information. Text B is told in a very enthusiastic way, which makes this article besides informative also amusing. These texts have another thing in common, both writers are expressing their admiration for animals and nature in general. They are showing the reader how wonderful and purposeful nature is, this is shown by words like: lovely, functional, beautifully, unique, most acute.

Text A is accessible to a broad public, the tone which is created by the writer is very light. The tone in text B also shows that his text is written for a broader public, although it's about a scientific subject. The writer addresses the reader already in the first line of text B, this gives a kind of conversational and direct effect. Sometimes the article seems to be an advertisement in a way, because of all these journalisms which are used. A part of a sentence which shows this is: "that are smaller, cheaper and simpler than those currently on the market." As you can see already in the previous sentence, the use of adjectives is also important in text B, as well in text A. Some examples are: jelled, webbed, large, disastrous etc. These adjectives make both texts more entertaining to read.

The text type, purpose and audience of course affects the language which is used in these texts. In text A, the diction is quite simple and informal, the writer doesn't use a lot of complicated words. The octopus is compared in this poem to some simple everyday object, for example "functional as an umbrella" and "as modern plumbing". Another example to show that text A is quite informal is



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