Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden Essay

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W.H. Auden wrote the poem, “Funeral Blues”. Wystan Hugh Auden (1907-1973) was born in York, England, and later became and American citizen. Auden was the founder for a generation of English poets, such as C. Day Lewis, and Stephen Spender. Auden’s earlier works were composed of a Marxist outlook with a knowledge of Freudian Psychology. Later works consisted of professing Christianity, and what he considered “increasing conservatism”. In 1946 Auden emigrated and became an American citizen. While in America he composed many verse plays, travel memoirs, and Opera lyrics. His last years of life were spent traveling and collaborating works of influential criticism.

“Funeral Blues”

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
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Blues songs were traditionally composed of three-line stanzas where the first two lines are identical and followed by a concluding riming third line. However, Auden does not include the “three-line stanzas” in his poem, and it is written in a freestyle form with the rhyming pattern: AA, BB, CC, DD, EE, FF, GG, HH.

Death is the subject of this poem, and becomes clear when Auden says, “Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come, ”. This poem’s topic has to do with someone close to the narrator dyeing possibly a lover. Auden uses a great deal of imagery in this poem; such as, “Tie crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves, ” where he is talking about making the doves suitable for a funeral. The tone of this poem, the attitude the writer speaks in, is very depressing and gloomy. “For nothing now can ever come to any good, ”. He is obviously upset about the one that he has lost and is in mourning. The diction of this poem is Modern English with many allusions. “He was my North, my South, my East and West, My working week and my Sunday rest, My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song; ” this quote shows how close the narrator was to his lover, and how the narrator was deeply in love with him. “Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun, Pour away the ocean and sweep up the woods; ”. At the end of this poem, Audin personifies the sun, moon, ocean, and woods; he does not see any point in there beauty
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