When in love, it can be easy to become delusional about how perfect everything is. But just like any relationship, love also has its ups and downs.
McKay’s poem, “If We Must Die,” serves as a powerful reminder that love can be deeper than we realize. With its classic form and elevated language, this piece transcends time – perfect for encouraging anyone in need of encouragement.
The speaker of “If We Must Die” is an anonymous person
In “If We Must Die,” an anonymous individual urges his fellow kinsmen to stand up for what they believe in. This poem serves as a testament to the Harlem Renaissance era when Black poets brought hope and inspiration to oppressed people through their work. Through Claude McKay’s captivating style, this message is conveyed effectively.
This poem emphasizes the injustice that African Americans have endured throughout history, particularly during the 1919 race riots. This event caused much violence against African American citizens and serves as a major reason why the speaker urges his kinsmen to fight for their lives.
Many people are against Black people fighting for their rights, yet it is essential to recognize that these rights are necessary in order to achieve a better life. The speaker uses this concept in his poem to encourage his kinsmen to stand up and become heroes by fighting for their rights.
He urges his kinsmen to show strength and bravely engage the enemy. This is because he believes that being manly will help them win their fight. Additionally, he makes it clear that they must stand up against a murderous cowardly pack which will hunt them down.
In the poem, he refers to his enemies as “the murderous cowardly pack.” This phrase refers to how oppressors hunted Africans in notorious mobs due to their cowardice.
When Africans were hunted, they used a weapon called the bayonet–a type of sword made out of bone that proved deadly when wielded. Unfortunately, it was expensive to purchase, making it only available to upper class individuals.
The oppressors also wielded a whip, similar to the bayonet. This weapon was highly dangerous and could quickly render someone dead with just one strike.
This weapon was one that many were fearful of, which is why the poet chose to include it in his poem. He also used this weapon as a way of teaching his allies that they needed to be manly in order to fight for their rights.
The poem is a Shakespearean sonnet
At the time this poem was composed in 1919, sonnet form was mostly associated with love poetry. But as its speaker makes clear, it can be used for writing about anything.
This poem utilizes a Shakespearean sonnet form to convey the oppression experienced by the speaker and his people. He breaks from traditional meter in order to emphasize important ideas and call for political resistance. This work serves as an inspiring example of how contemporary Black writers can compete with prominent dead white men of English poetry on their own turf.
Sonnets can be divided into quatrains, consisting of fourteen lines in a single stanza. Quatrains typically follow an ABAB CDCD EFEF GG rhyme scheme and are written in iambic pentameter.
McKay also employs alliteration, or words that begin with the same letter appearing close together. This helps readers comprehend his or her emotions and ideas more readily.
McKay also utilizes metaphor, a technique in which two things appear similar but do not have the same significance. This helps readers connect the speaker’s emotions to events described in the poem.
The poem employs several poetic devices to convey its message. One example is repetition, which occurs when a word or phrase is repeated repeatedly to help the reader comprehend what the speaker is saying.
Shakespearean sonnets often employ repetition of certain words to demonstrate how enduring the feelings of their speaker are.
Sonnets that address death often feature repeated phrases. The poem also uses “shall” to emphasize that death is inevitable.
Writing a sonnet that deals with death can be challenging. Yet this poem serves as an excellent example of how the sonnet form can be employed to explore this difficult subject without losing focus on its central message.
McKay uses refined language throughout the poem, making it appealing and easy to read even when dark and desperate. Additionally, this work serves as a prime example of how a contemporary Black writer can utilize traditional forms of English poetry to express his emotions.
The poem is about political resistance
McKay uses the traditional Shakespearean sonnet form, with its ABAB rhyme scheme and iambic pentameter, to explore political resistance. It serves as a call for oppressed individuals to fight back against their oppressors – particularly when that fight involves violence.
This poem is primarily directed at African-Americans during 1919’s Red Summer, when they were facing intense white persecution. The speaker urges his allies to join him in standing up for what they believe in.
He employs metaphors and symbolism throughout the poem to illustrate his point. Symbols allow readers to more readily connect with and interpret his message in their own unique way, helping them better comprehend its significance. He emphasizes the necessity of political action – which may be difficult for some individuals – by using these images.
One of the key metaphors used in McKay’s poem is “like hogs,” which conveys how those McKay is writing about have been stripped of their humanity. Additionally, she refers to their oppressors as monsters and mad, hungry dogs.
These words possess great power and stir deep emotions within the reader. They eerie, yet recall the racial times period in which this poem was written. Furthermore, their metaphoric use makes the reader feel as if they are right there with the narrator and his allies during their moment of greatest need.
Another powerful metaphor used in the poem is “like herds of dogs.” This imagery depicts how those being spoken about are being surrounded by mobs of people who wish them harm. It’s similar to being herded, yet more intensely connotes fear and repression.
Finally, the last metaphor in the poem is “like an open grave.” This image emphasizes that those being spoken about are likely to die if they attempt to resist their oppressors’ power over them; after all, those with great control over them possess tremendous might and can kill them even while trying to subjugate them.
The poem is about love
Poetry can be an expressive tool to express your emotions, especially when writing about love. Some of the greatest poets have used their skill to capture various aspects of romantic love – for instance, you could write a poem about your first crush or the bond between you and your spouse.
Before you begin writing, it’s essential to have an objective in mind. Select a topic or theme that interests you and focus on it. You may use different formats such as sonnets or limericks to express your ideas creatively.
Many poems explore aspects of love, such as romance, intimacy or sexuality. Some can be thrilling or uplifting while others may be more serious or heartbreaking. You could also write a poem about someone you care about who has passed away – an experience which may be difficult to comprehend.
Some of the greatest love poems incorporate imagery, symbolism and figurative language to help readers connect with the subject matter and make it more memorable for them.
Langston Hughes’ poem ‘A Love Song for Lucinda’ uses nature imagery to emphasize the bond between lovers. The piece compares love with various things such as falling in love’s exhilarating sensation, the allurement of nature and even love’s spiritual awe.
Rupi Kaur’s poem ‘for him’ is an elegant celebration of love that doesn’t try to overwhelm its reader with sentimentality, yet still captures its essence. Her relatable writing style makes her work particularly popular on Instagram with millions of followers.
Margaret Atwood’s ‘Variations on the Word Love’ is another excellent example of a love poem. In it, she examines various interpretations of love and debunks some common cliches associated with it. Additionally, she delves into different types of relationships such as platonic love or passionate passion.
Poems can be an expressive form of emotion and an excellent way to show someone how much you care about them. Present your poem in a heartfelt manner, such as by handwriting it on an elegant card or typing it onto nice paper to present to the recipient.