Comparing the Poems City Jungle by Pie Corbett, London by William Blake and Londinium by Catatonia
"City Jungle" by Pie Corbett, "London" by William Blake and
"Londinium" by Catatonia are poems that share the same theme: cities
and city life. They each have negative opinions of cities and similar
themes and messages, that cities are unpleasant. The poems are
however, vastly different in their style; "City Jungle" has a fun
atmosphere, whereas "Londinium" and "London" have depressing
atmospheres (especially "London").
"City jungle" is simple, direct and modern title that paradoxically
compares cities to jungles; both are over crowded, hostile places
though are opposite extremes on the spectrum of civilisation and
nature. "City Jungle" maybe a description of cities in general rather
one specific city as we are not told which city is being described.
"London" is another simple, direct and modern title (although the poem
itself is complex and old-fashioned). We know that London is the city
being described in the poem because of the title "London" and the
description of the River Thames and of Buckingham Palace.
"Londinium" is a direct title that uses the Latin translation for
London to give us a sense of history, because London is an old city.
We know that London is the city being described because of the title
"Londinium" and of the description of Euston and Paddington train
stations and of the M25.
The poem "City Jungle" is a modern, humorous poem that demonstrates
the likeness of cities to jungles by describing commonplace city
objects as jungle creatures, "Lizard cars cruse by".
"London" is a Victorian poem in which Blake expresses his opinions on
the ill state of London and effects of the industrial revolution on 18th
and 19th century society of which the poor were victims.
In "Londinium" Catatonia (a famous singer/song writer from Wales)
autobiographically expresses that she would like to leave London and
go, perhaps home to Wales because of the capitalism, commercialism and
pollution of London.
Both "London" and "Londinium" are written in the first person
narrative in such a style that it is like the poet is talking to us.
Blake describes to us what he sees as he walks around London and
Catatonia communicates her opinions of London whilst she is in a taxi.
"City Jungle" is written in narrative but in the third person, unlike
"London" and "Londinium". "London" is written in an old fashioned,
formal style, the language "Londinium" is colloquial and the language
in "City Jungle" is metaphorical.
The atmospheres of all three poems are fundamentally the same,
depressing, negative and sinister. However the poets' approaches to
the depression and negativity are quite different. Although "City
Jungle" depressing it has a comical and bizarre atmosphere,