You can discover a lot about a poem by comparing it to one by another author that deals with a similar subject. You could compare features such as theme, form, structure, rhythm, language and figures of speech.

The key thing to do when comparing poems is to note the points where they are similar and the points where they differ. You could make a list noting similarities and differences between the two poems.

Comparison of 'Climbing My Grandfather' by Andrew Waterhouse and 'Letters from Yorkshire' by Maura Dooley


  • Both poems cover themes of relationships, memories and strong connections between people.
  • The poems are structured using mostly unrhymed lines, enjambment and everyday speech patterns.
  • They have a conversational tone and use everyday language.


  • Climbing My Grandfather refers specifically to a family relationship. In Letters from Yorkshire, the relationship between the two people is not clear.
  • The bond between the two people in Climbing My Grandfather is strong across time, whilst in Letters from Yorkshire the bond is strong across distance.
  • Climbing My Grandfather has been written as one long stanza, giving a sense of a long climb. Letters from Yorkshire has five stanzas, each with three lines, where different scenes and ideas are explored.
  • Waterhouse uses an extended metaphor to explore key idea whilst Dooley uses an occasional metaphor (light/air) to convey emotion.

Explore the study guide for 'Climbing My Grandfather'.