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Sunday, December 11, 2016

The Soldier by Rupert Brooke

"The Soldier" by Rupert Brooke is a testimony to the love and pride men felt towards their nation, before the First World War. "Under an English Heaven" is the most prominent line in the poem, that truly brings out the theme of patriotism and nationalism.
 Brooke does not fill his poem with extravagant images or ostentatious depictions, rather, he uses simple words to express his profound love for his nation. The words that he uses, such as "laughter, learnt of friends" give way to reminiscences of fond memories, allowing the reader to delve into their own mind and evaluate the greatness of their country.

 Brooke frequently personifies his country of Great Britain, perhaps to show that his connection with his homeland ventured deeper than the political boundaries. This might have been used as encouragement or motivation for young soldiers who needed to be reminded of their homes. The poet goes so far as to express gratitude to the nation, as one usually does to one's family.
 The setting of "The Soldier", and it's purpose, are both quite evident. Any reader would be able to establish that the poem was used to call out soldiers at the outbreak of the war. Brooke's use of personal pronouns emphasizes a strong bond with the country, and adds authenticity to the poem. He, and of course his glorified nation, are the main characters in the poem. He follows a rhyme scheme initially, but soon changes it, which could be interpreted as the evolving of an institution.
 The poet begins in quite a grim, solemn tone. His blunt implication of death is the only harsh truth in the poem. However, the tone soon progresses to one of gratitude and remembrance, creating a similar atmosphere. Together, the tone and mood help to amplify the patriotic purposes of the poem.
 As was previously stated, Brooke writes with a simplistic and colloquial style. This might be in order to ensure that even the poorest of peasants would understand the cause he was glorifying. He does not use synonyms, rather he repeats words such as "rich". However, there is no suggestion of hesitation in the text, which further adds credibility to the emotion he depicts.
 Conclusively, I believe that Rupert Brooke has succeeded in convincing the readers that he truly does feel a profound connection to his homeland, and that all other young men should too.

You can read the poem here.

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