Parade’s End
Suggests wealth
Suggests he is uneasy
Dad parked our Granada, a champagne-gold
by our superstore on Blackstock Road,
my brother’s eyes scanning the men
who scraped the pavement frost to the dole,
Unemployed –
one ‘got on his bike’ over the hill
or the few who warmed us a thumbs-up
for the polished recovery of our re-sprayed car.
Implies that not many
people are friendly to
Their car has been
Suggests poverty
Cheap cuts imply poverty
Council mums at our meat display
nestled against a pane with white trays
swilling kidneys, liver and a sandy block
of corned beef, loud enough about the way
darkies from down south Come op ta
Yorksha, mekkin claaims on aut theh can
befoh buggrin off in theh flash caahs!
Racist term
Yorkshire dialect reinforces the cultural
difference between ‘them’ and ‘us’
Long day – they work
Caesura draws attention to “Bolted” showing how
they feel unsafe
At nine, we left the emptied till open,
clicked the dials of the safe. Bolted
two metal bars across the back door
(with a new lock). Spread trolleys
at ends of the darkened aisles. Then we pressed
the code for the caged alarm and rushed
the precinct to check it was throbbing red.
Implies the last one
was destroyed
Creates sinister tone
Shows their
Reinforces that they don’t
feel safe
Illustrates the lack of respect from
the community
Thundering down the graffiti of shutters
against the valley of high-rise flats.
Ready for the getaway to our cul-de-sac’d
semi-detached, until we stood stock-still:
watching the car-skin pucker, bubbling smarts
of acid. In the unstoppable pub-roar
from the John O’Gaunt across the forecourt
Almost personifies the car making the
crime more alarming
The colon creates a pause
– while they look on in
We returned up to the shop, lifted a shutter,
queued at the sink, walked down again.
Three of us, each carrying pans of cold water.
Then we swept away the bonnet-leaves
from gold to the brown of our former colour.
Literally = the colour of the car
Metaphorically = they will always be judged for the colour of
their skin
Parade’s End
What could the title mean?
• The shop is at the end of a parade of shops
• The family may feel that they are coming to the “end of their
• The family are at the “end” of the community (on the
outskirts / not accepted)
What other words in the poem suggest this?
• “cul-de-sac’d / semi-detached”
How can you connect this poem to “Half-Caste”?
• Both suggest that people can be judged because of their skin
• Both poets create contrasts in their poems
• Both poems show a form of conflict
• Both poems protest about something being unfair
• The speaker in “Half-caste” is angry but the speaker in
“Parade’s End” is afraid and dismayed.
• In “Half-Caste”, the poet speaks directly to the reader but
“Parade’s End” gives one person’s viewpoint of his day.

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