Thursday, June 25, 2009
Volleying and thundering
You would think I might get these all right. No, I got 6 / 7. I even got the question on To Kill a Bleeding Mockingbird right. What I got wrong is the question on The Charge of the Light Brigade, where I was invited to declare why Tennyson had used certain verbs. All the answers were reasonable, but only one is right, apparently. My respect for GCSE examiners has increased exponentially, as it is clear they can communicate with long dead poets laureate to ask footling questions about their poems.
"Alf, are you there? Can you tell us why you chose the verbs "volleyed" and "thundered" in that long poem of yours?"
"Certainly: it's to reinforce the danger faced by the soldiers."
"Righto. Sure it's not to reinforce the noise of battle, what with those verbs being vaguely onamatopoeic and all?"
"Nope. Reinforce the danger."
"OK. Thanks Alf. Is Charlotte there by the way? Got a couple of questions for her."