so what is next to of course god america i actually about?

Today, I thought I’d share a few thoughts about this E. E. Cummings poem. I’m getting loads of hits about it and it’s obviously troubling people. Is it an actual sonnet? Of course! Does it break a few sonnet rules? Occasionally. But it conforms to more than it breaks.

Here’s a link to my hoooooooge analysis of the poem (3,700 words that will enlighten you!) – other goodies will come!

And if you think about it, listen to Bruce Springsteen’s track ‘Born in the USA’ and ask yourself what this poem has in common with the song

Overall, the things that stand out to me are:

  • the sonnet form
  • the way it uses fragments of patriotic poems and songs and lines
  • the fact it’s about war and how hollow patriotism is as a reason to die
  • the lions going to the slaughter
  • who the speaker is, and what he really means.
  • the intertextuality and links, linguistic echoes of other texts

If you want to read more about the AQA poetry anthology contemporary poetry, you can find my ebook here. If you want to read more about the Literary Heritage poems, including ‘Next to of course god america i’, you can find my AQA Literary Heritage poetry analysis here. Remember, you don’t need a kindle or e-reader to read it; just download the ‘Kindle for PC’ software. If you want an hour’s lesson with me (or even half an hour!) you can find all my details on my website. One hour via skype is £20.00 only! By the end, I promise you will OWN the poems!!

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