For GCSE English in Britain, the language section involves 15 poems we have to write about in the exam. In 45 minutes, we get one of the poems, and we have to compare it to another of the 14 poems from memory based on a question that could be related to power. One poem stands out as particularly challenging: Tissue. You can read Tissue online.
Just to show that I'm not literally asking for the 'answer', here is a range of questions that the teachers think examiners may ask on this question:
Power of Humans, Power of Nature, Effects of Conflict, Reality of Conflict, Loss and Absence, Memory, Negative Emotion [anger/guilt/fear/pride], Identity, Individual Experiences.
E.g. "Compare how the writer presents loss and absence in Ozymandias and one other poem."
To me, it seems like a vague, rambling monologue about buildings and paper. We've studied it in class, but everything has gone right over our heads, for want of anything related to the power concept that is direct enough to gain marks in an exam. We're told to get to the heart of each poem, but Tissue is very trying, and none of my friends are faring much better.
Apart from references that our lives are controlled too much by money ("Fine slips"/"paid by credit card"), can you spot any underlying messages about power that would make sense in an exam, and aren't generalized?
Just for the sake of context in terms of power when it comes to our poetry cluster, here are a few other poems from the power section in case anyone knows them -
Ozymandias, London, The Emigree, My Last Duchess, Storm on the Island, Checking out me History, and The Prelude.
A few bullet points on power would be great (there are million possible interpretations of this poem, but don't write an essay!).