An Athlete Dying Young : A. Housman Essay

859 Words Jun 28th, 2016 4 Pages
To an Athlete Dying Young: A. E. Housman
The title of the poem “To an Athlete Dying Young," represents precisely what the poem is about; an athlete who surprisingly died at a youthful age before all of his life’s expectations had been fulfilled. The speaker seems to consider the athlete’s death as a positive phenomenon for the athlete. The speaker uses several figurative languages to make the poem more personal, so that readers can feel engaged. The poem appears to be about “Pride and the unexpectedness of death” – the speaker believes that it was better for the athlete to die young with pride and honor than to undergo the mortification that awaits him at the end of his career, after working so hard.
Preliminary, the title of the poem seems to be talking about a healthy athlete who unexpectedly died at a young age. In the first stanza, the speaker seems to be having a recollection of a moment in the past, when the athlete won an important race, which made him famous. Everyone in the town was so delighted about the athlete’s victory; they celebrated and carried him home throughout the town on their shoulders. “We chaired you through the market-place.” Market-place gives the impression that the setting was probably taking place in a rural area. After the second stanza, I perceived a shift in the speaker’s tone, and the settings of the poem. His tone seems to have shifted from been cheerful to sadness; and the settings appears to have changed to the graveyard.
Even though the…

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