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Biology 2018 Solutions for Leaving Cert Higher Level

You can access the paper via the examinations.ie website. No marking scheme is available at the time of writing. You may also like: Leaving Cert Biology.
Q1. (a) 1. To receive energy for cellular reactions to occur 2. For growth and repair  (b) Many sugar units joined together  (c) Cellulose  (d) Contains glycerol and three fatty acids  (e) Phospholipids are found in cell membranes  (f) Biuret test 
Q2. (a) Living factor  (b) The place where an organism lives  (c) All of the different populations living in an area  (d) All members of the same species living in an area  (e) The functional role of an organism in an ecosystem  (f) The part of the Earth that sustains life  (g) Checking for the presence or absence of an organism in an ecosystem 
Q3. (a) Interphase  (b) Cell division in which one cell becomes two cells and the number of chromosomes is retained. The genetic material of the daughter cell is identical to the mother cell.  (c)1. The chromosome number is halved in meiosis  2. Meiosis involves 2 c…

Brendan Kennelly for Leaving Cert English: Begin

"Begin" by Brendan Kennelly

You may also like: 2019 Guide to Leaving Cert English. Full notes on Brendan Kennelly will be made available to everyone who has the 2019 guide, free of charge, as soon as they are ready.

Summary: a philosophical reflection on starting something new again and again communicated through the description of a morning walk across the Grand Canal in Dublin.

Style features:
  • anaphora (1) (highlighted in bold) adds a sense of determination as does the repetition of the word “begin” throughout the poem
  • enjambment highlights the never ending need to begin again 
  • imperative tone, “begin again” is an encouraging command to never give up 
  • alliteration e.g. “dying in dark / determination” enhances the imagery
  • reference to familiar places, “Pembroke Road” near the Aviva Stadium in Dublin 4, make the poem more accessible
  • imagery appeals to multiple senses: “summoning birds”, “sight of the light”, “roar of morning traffic”, “crying birds in the sudden rain”, “branches stark in the willing sunlight” 
  • use of contrast: “born in light and dying in dark” 
  • personification: “the arrogant loneliness of swans in the canal” 
  • metaphor: “bridges linking the past and future” 
  • simple yet precise language, especially the simple dynamic emotive verbs: a promise is “born”, exaltation is “flowering”, etc. 
Themes:
  • persevering in the face of adversity: it’s not just about beginning once, but we “begin again” and “forever begin” rather than giving in even despite “dreams of ending” 
  • loneliness: “the loneliness that cannot end / since it perhaps is what makes us begin… alone together while making good”.
Begin

Begin again to the summoning birds
to the sight of the light at the window,

The repetition of the hard “g” that draws emphasis to the command to “begin again”. There is an internal rhyme within “sight of the light” that enhances the sensuous quality of the poem.

begin to the roar of morning traffic
all along Pembroke Road.

Morning traffic is a familiar image that makes this inspirational poem a little more down to earth. Most people will have been stuck in traffic near the canal at some point!

Every beginning is a promise
born in light and dying in dark
determination and exaltation of springtime
flowering the way to work.

This poem is about the two sides of the beginning: “determination” to go though the hard slog of adversity and failure fuelled by the “exaltation” of knowing it is all worth it.

Begin to the pageant of queuing girls
the arrogant loneliness of swans in the canal
bridges linking the past and future
old friends passing though with us still.

The poet suggests that the motivation for all our beginnings in to connect with other human beings, “wonder at unknown faces” and try to keep “the loneliness that cannot end” at bay. This could be related to his troubled marriage or his struggle with alcohol.

Begin to the loneliness that cannot end
since it perhaps is what makes us begin,
begin to wonder at unknown faces
at crying birds in the sudden rain
at branches stark in the willing sunlight
at seagulls foraging for bread
at couples sharing a sunny secret

The sibilance of “sharing a sunny secret” paints the picture of a couple whispering in each other’s ears. Note the anaphora of “at”: it brings a chant-like rhythm to the poem.

alone together while making good.
Though we live in a world that dreams of ending

“Dreams of ending” could be a reference to the nuclear threat of the Cold War or perhaps an even more general dark thought of how death ends all suffering.

that always seems about to give in
something that will not acknowledge conclusion
insists that we forever begin.

The poem is filled with the sense of determination to be grateful for everyday experiences. (2) It starts off as a celebration of a new day, full refreshing opportunity, and progresses to examining the harder things in life: crossing the bridge from the past to the future, dealing with loneliness and death and not giving in.

Even though the poem is full of hope, it acknowledges that promises and beginnings are “born in light”, only to die “in dark”. This adds a realistic, down-to-earth quality to this otherwise incredibly energetic poem.

The poet commands us to “begin” as the first and the last word of this poem, bringing it full circle. This emphasises the idea that even if we end where we began, we must begin again. The repetition of the word “begin” 8 times throughout the poem reminds us that it requires a constant effort to never give up. The poet is preaching the best of his wisdom to us in an encouraging yet understanding manner.

Brendan Kennelly for Leaving Cert English: Begin
Dublin's Grand Canal

(1) Anaphora is the repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of successive clauses. Usually it used in persuasive pieces, such as advertising and speeches, and prayers, e.g. Churchill in WWII: “We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills. We shall never surrender.” Or even, "Maybe she's born with it. Maybe it's Maybelline"

(2) Kennelly was inspired by another famous Irish poet, Patrick Kavanagh, and it is very obvious in this poem. You can mention - briefly - that the reference to the canal and the process of finding extraordinary aspects of ordinary things are reminiscent of Kavanagh. I don’t recommend that you elaborate too much as this is not the best way to get marks.

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