An Athlete Dying Young By Alfred Edward

2357 Words Aug 1st, 2016 10 Pages
To an Athlete Dying Young by Alfred Edward (A.E.) Housman is a fairly short, yet powerful poem. This poem is extremely relatable to anyone who is an athlete or knows one. The reader finds themes related to death and pride. Housman’s writing style, imagery, the context in which this was written and his views on athletes contribute to the themes of this poem. Housman’s writing style has been described as very realistic, which in return creates a pessimistic feeling. E. Christian Kopff writes that “He treated the moral virtues, including patriotism, the love of beauty, the search for truth, and friendship as realities that imposed lifelong obligations. He lived and wrote as though morality and duty were real, not "hollow fictions" (Kopff 237). In Housman’s To an Athlete Dying Young his writing style, imagery and the context of the story greatly add to the theme of the poem and create a sense of relatability that will outlast many generations. To an Athlete Dying Young is about an athlete who passes away at a young age. In the beginning it is very upbeat and positive, the speaker is reminiscing on an athlete who won an important race and was carried through town as a way to celebrate. However, this feeling doesn’t last long as the second stanza places the reader at said athletes own funeral. The poem continues on talking about how it was actually fortunate for the athlete to die young, nevertheless it is hard for anyone to think that someone so young loosing their life could…
Open Document