Form and structure

Like most of Lochhead’s poetry, this poem is constructed in free verse using an irregular meter. Within this there is a distinctly recognisable rhythm.

Lochhead has said previously that she 'hears' the rhythm of a poem as she is writing and enjoys how the different consonant and vowel sounds can utterly alter the beat and mood of a piece.

This poem is much better enjoyed when performed as it has a naturally sardonic, almost darkly comedic quality.

The poem is divided into six stanzas of unequal length. It is heavily punctuated to create a clipped, almost stunted style with many breaks.

The use of devices such as alliteration, repetition and the juxtaposition of certain words helps to convey the way this poem would be spoken, almost as though through clenched teeth.

Aside from the final line, each stanza ends either with a full or half rhyme. This helps make the reader/listener aware of the end of each stanza/subject.