Please can you help me with as much information/literary analysis on the poem "Swim Right up to Me" by Katherine Pierpooint? Anything at all wich might help towards a grade 6 LAMDA exam. Many thanks.

Swim Right Up to Me

I first learnt to swim at home in my father's study
On the piano stool, planted on the middle of the rug.
Stomach down, head up, arms and legs rowing hard;
I swam bravely, ploughing up the small room,
Pinned on a crushed stuckness of stomach to tapestry,
The twin handles hard on my elbows on the back stroke.
A view down through four braced wooden legs
To the same thin spot in the rug.
My mother faced me, calling rhythmic encouragement,
Almost stepping back to let me swim up to her,
Reminding me to breathe;
And wiping my hair and eyes with her hand
As I swam and swam on the furniture against a running tide,
Pig-cheeked, concentrating on pushing and pushing away,
Planning to learn to fly next, easy,
Higher than the kitchen table, even. The garden wall.

Expert Answers

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Yes, breathe easy we can help you with this so try not to panic about your exam. I know this poem, it is from Katherine Peirpoint's beautiful collection of poems about the senses 'Truffle Beds.' The swimming poem 'Swim Right Up To Me'  is a sensory poem and these are the sorts of poems for which she is admired. Her poetry is full of surprises, they offer bold and beautiful sensory images and a uniquely eccentric way of perceiving the poet's world. Katherine Peirpoint describes the natural world with vibrancy and affection, and more than a little humour.

'Swim Right Up To Me' describes the experience of trying to learn to swim on dry land, using a stool. The poet describes this in minute detail, the discomfort, flailing arms and legs and even the view of the floor. She tells how her Mom called encouragement to her to 'Swim Right Up To Me' til she almost felt she really could. She feels so confident and successful that the poem finishes with a little eccentric humoiur as she says she is ready to learn to fly next, higher than the garden wall! She has the love of a mother behind her. Good Luck!

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