When analysing a poem, it is always good idea to start by looking at the overall composition and the way it is structured in terms of stanzas, verses, beginning, subdivision, etc. Also, it is important to have a look at the rhythm and rhyme of the poem too. Here, we will discuss these aspects regarding “Talking Turkeys!!” by Benjamin Zephaniah.
“Talking Turkeys!!” is a five stanza poem. Stanzas 1, 2 and 5 are comprised of five lines or verses. Stanza 3 has only seven lines and stanza 4 has nine lines. The poem has both internal and external rhymes. Internal rhymes are simple and easy to spot: “Join Turkeys United an dey'll be delighted” (p. 30, l. 10)
The external rhyme is broken, with only some of the verses rhyming alternatively:
“Be nice to yu turkeys dis christmas
Cos turkeys just wanna hav fun
Turkeys are cool, turkeys are wicked
An every turkey has a Mum.” (p. 29, ll. 1-4)
What strikes about the poem is that it is not written in standard British English, but using Jamaican slang.
Overall, the poem is a direct address to all those eating turkey meat for Christmas holidays. In his address, the poet tries to persuade them to give up eating turkeys, as the animals also have the right to live.