(Note that analyses can vary widely, hence these annotations must only be used in conjunction with your own analyses).
Annotations of From the Journal of a Disappointed Man by Andrew Motion
Journal of a Disappointed Man (comp) (pdf)
Summary of the poem:
Title: Journal — something personal, from the perspective of the observer.
Tone: At first seems objective 1st POV, but narrator can sometimes tell what the men are thinking. Like an event he wrote in a diary.
Summary: Narrator observes a group of workmen trying to drive a new pile into the pier. They fail, and this failure to complete the task speaks volumes about hopelessness in daily life.
Structure: regular 4 line stanza, shows monotony. No rhyme scheme. Enjambment, flowy,
Themes: Modern issues, hopelessness, disappointment,
Devices used: contrast, juxtaposition, allusion (crack of doom), figurative language, symbolism, metaphor, diction to reflect ambivalent mood,
Links to other poems: Effects, Please Hold, Fantasia, A Minor Role (inevitability), Chainsaw