About Me

My photo
Born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, now living in Cheshire, England. I started writing poetry eight years ago, as a hobby. I have enjoyed that new venture very much. My preferences are for long and micro-form poetry styles. A first book of poetry ~ Reason Without Rhyme, was published in December 2013. A second book ~ Fifty Seven Pebbles, was published in September 2015...I am presently compiling the content for my third book. Thank you for visiting my Blog which is regularly updated. COPYRIGHT: The entire copyright and content of this Blog belongs to the author Eileen T O'Neill. Nothing should be copied, reproduced or hosted as per RSS feed by any other party. {This particularly applies to the USA company Feedspot.com} Header Photograph: Ballycastle Beach, County Antrim, Northern Ireland...

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Mother Tongue....



Defined and distinguished by one’s words,
Accents characterize roots and homeland.
Mother tongue and fatherland influences,
Immediately assign an identity of tradition.
Travels and interactions may mollify a tone,
Brogues can be distinctive and recognisable.
Pleasing to ears and welcome in their greeting,
Or invite hostility and a judgement of ethnicity.
At times one silences one’s language and voice,
In certain circumstances perceived nationality kills.
Freedom of speech still languishes in many worlds,
Lineage and linguistics prepare the communication.
Inheritance disseminates and shares its intonations,
Individuality should be heard in one’s vocal appeal.

©Copyright Eileen T O’Neill 01/03/2015
Poets United Mid-Week Motif: ‘Mother Tongue.’

28 comments:

  1. So true, Eileen, that accents do characterize one's roots and homeland. Today in church we heard a pastor who came from Germany but spoke perfect English....but there was an accent that makes a person realize that he was not a native English speaker. Sad if one's accent would invite hostility, but I do there are some circumstances in which it does. I like your last line. Individuality SHOULD be heard. And we should appreciate that individuality! I like your take on this subject, Eileen.

    ReplyDelete
  2. And sometimes when one lives away from the homeland for many years, accents become neither here nor there. Nice poem with a lot of truths.

    ReplyDelete
  3. "Accents characterize roots and homeland" this is a great truth about mother tongue and I like how you've taken mother tongue to be the key to one's identity and touched the various aspects of human nature centering on this one language...a profound write Eileen...

    ReplyDelete
  4. I didn't attempt to address this, such a huge subject. You have managed to cover a lot of it succinctly yet coherently, and give us new thoughts to ponder.

    ReplyDelete
  5. well stated. language a gift unique to the human speicies. or is it? unfortunately, in these calamitous times not always embraced but used as a tool for dilineation to separate, to discriminate. humans who should be proudful of the diversities in ethnicities and ways to communicate, we choose to turn this into a negative and destructive tool. oh well, nice write Eileen.

    gracias

    ReplyDelete
  6. How I agree. "Vive la difference"

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yes...much hangs on the coat tails of an accent or a language...it sometimes feels subconscious how we judge and measure...thoughtful write..and made me stop and think of how i hear

    ReplyDelete
  8. Oh I do understand - with a mother tongue that's not English I hope to keep that little difference... Wonderful

    ReplyDelete
  9. I have always loved accents and regionalisms but have heard the story of prejudicial treatment from more than one of my friends. Lately it is the "sounding white" bias I have been hearing about, though many people of color in my generation wiped away class accents to make corporate advances. I would the world we could just stop with all the judgment and enjoy the sounds around us!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love how this tripped on my tongue...it is true just here in the US with many accents...

    Donna@LivingFromHappiness

    ReplyDelete
  11. oh yes , individuality must be heard

    ReplyDelete
  12. a lovely write, even here in Trinidad and Tobago, one can tell by slight accent tones someone from the twin island of Tobago

    have a lovely Sunday

    much love...

    ReplyDelete
  13. everyone has a voice.
    love to hear you sing here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    http://ihopsmithwalkingpath.blogspot.com/2015/03/haiku-and-poetry.html

    ReplyDelete
  14. So true, every word, whatever the accent, the meaning and importance of it, is heard with an open ear.

    Poppy

    ReplyDelete
  15. One's mother tongue.......a source of pride. But also, sometimes, of prejudice. Well and thoughtfully written, Eileen!

    ReplyDelete
  16. i liked learning new languages, even the basic / everyday terms only. i think languages are built through tradition and culture. Such a poem covering this sentiment, Eileen

    ReplyDelete
  17. How sad to think how accents can invite judgement & hostility among people. As someone who lived in a nation of many languages spoken, this issue commonly happens & it saddens me tremendously whenever I saw groups of people making fun & laughing at how someone would talk & the words sounded differently beyond the standards set by common ears. This is a very powerful poem, Eileen, and indeed an eye opener.

    - ksm

    ReplyDelete
  18. Very interesting reflections on accents and identity, Eileen. I also find that my reactions to accent differ whether the accent is in my own language or in a foreign language or/and if I am in France or in another country.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Great response to the prompt. A well written prose poem.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Inheritance disseminates and shares its intonations,
    Individuality should be heard in one’s vocal appeal.

    Wonderful ending Eileen! Yes, accents cannot be disguised as the glottal stops peculiar to each language make the accents different. The Spanish speaker will always speak with a strong 'r' even when speaking English. Good observation!

    Hank

    ReplyDelete
  21. How I wish there wasn't a need to "fit in" and silence our own voices. I love accents though. I love hearing different languages. I wish all of our differences were embraced. Your words do hold so much truth!

    ReplyDelete
  22. My Mother Tongue is "North Wisconsin Hillbilly". But taking pride in where one originated should never take precedence over the seeking out of similarities rather than differences. Well written piece, pertinent in today's world, and thought provoking to boot,

    Elizabeth

    ReplyDelete
  23. So true that sometimes a foreign language can bring on prejudice unfortunately. But freedom of speech and individuality should prevail. I think accents are beautiful. Great poem :)

    ReplyDelete
  24. People give up their language seeking social identity, mobility...This reminds me of some other cases I know of where individuals have lost their Mother Tongue...but, I don't think it is very easy to gain a second Mother Tongue in life. Great piece!!

    ReplyDelete
  25. And above all else we be one
    under this shared moon and sun...
    Though some revere the flag or tongue.
    'tis t'ward Heaven alone I shall run...

    ReplyDelete
  26. I love accents as they define the person to a region of their world - the place they most likely call home.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I love what you wrote about individuality in the closing line...

    ReplyDelete

I appreciate visits to this Blog and any comments left. I shall always endeavour to reciprocate. Thank you, Eileen