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Analysis and comments on next to of course god america i... (III) by e.e. cummings

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Comment 26 of 366, added on January 12th, 2008 at 10:06 PM.

honestly, i feel that this poem has many different and almost opposite-like
ideas. cummings' character praises the fact that America is a glorious
nation and all who reside in America hold great pride in their country.
Soldiers are proud to go fight for what America stands for, for them in
this world. And the thing that this character emphasizes is that these
soldiers of America fight for the beauty of America; the freedom, the
liberty. The soldiers don't even think one bit; to such an extent that they
are ready to face death even when it comes to them. cummings sarcastically
remarks how America has patriotic soldiers representing her freedom,
without thinking because they only have the thought that war glorifies a
nation and "beautifies" the "voice of liberty." This poem is a poem of the
question WHY towards this capitalist train of thinking of patriotism in
these soldiers and people of America. The real question is Why is freedom
fighting when everything should be earned or given in freedom? including
individual worth and thought?

:) this is what i think. i just wrote what came to my mind.

tiki from United States
Comment 25 of 366, added on September 19th, 2007 at 10:34 PM.

@amy this poem is definitely a patriotic poem, just because cummings did
not capitalize america doesn't mean that it is not patriotic. you need to
realize that cummings writes in his own specific style which includes
little to no capitalization, which makes a bigger impact on the reader
because it makes the reader think. and so what if he didn't capitalize
america it doesn't change the intent of the poem, which is mainly about how
people think of america and how people are willing to die for america with
out even a second thought which show a great deal of patriotism.

Alicia
Comment 24 of 366, added on May 31st, 2007 at 5:46 PM.

THIS POEM WAS AWSOME


JOJO from United States
Comment 23 of 366, added on May 21st, 2007 at 5:58 AM.

At face value, E.E. Cummings’ “next to of course god america i”, impacts
the reader with little to no emotional influence. Instead, the poem
initially impresses its audience by assuming the appearance of,
essentially, an incomprehensible slew of words thrown together without
order or apparent meaning. As is the case for most well written, quality
poetry, however, close reading of “next to of course got america i”,
illustrates the author’s meticulous poetic methodology; in which not a
single syllable lacks explicit purpose in a connotative or denotative
sense. The poet effectively posits the tone and purpose for “next to of
course god america i”, through an, albeit grammatically convoluted, yet
suggestively crafted, seven word title, and by continuing on with the poem
as a satirical dramatization of the conflict between a public speaker’s
empty charade of patriotism, and the audience’s cynical reception of his
speech. The poet achieves the portrayal of this relationship through the
use of various literary devices, imagery, diction, rhyme, and other aural
and visual details throughout.
The speaker dictates the poem in two stanzas, the first being thirteen
lines, and the second only one. The total poem consists of fourteen lines
in combination with a clear rhyme scheme which makes it a sonnet. The
speaker leaves out all punctuation from the first stanza, except one
question mark at the end, to purposefully interfere with the reader’s
ability to comprehend the first stanza on the first read. The lack of
punctuation makes the speaker sound rambling and indefinite, and it makes
the poem’s first thirteen lines look like a random compilation of words.
The second stanza incorporates much more sanity by adding some
grammatically comprehensive punctuation in the form of a single period. The
rambling sound of the speech followed by the coherency exhibited by the
rational, one-lined listener juxtaposes the overall theme, which implies
that the supposed representatives of America are just figure heads chanting
empty, insubstantial lyrics of pretend patriotism from a speechwriters
poisoned ink pen. All the while, the American people are forced to watch
their soldiers, who are the ones fighting for American ideals, and acting
as the true muted voice of liberty, die, and shake their heads as they
suffer from one disappointing, representative inadequacy after
another.


Alex from United States
Comment 22 of 366, added on March 23rd, 2007 at 7:02 PM.

this poem was published in 1926, which is most certainly NOT after World
War II. It IS, however, after World War I. Is this what you meant, Chris
S.? Also, this poem is very comparable to Wilfred Owen's "Dulce et Decorum
Est". They both lament the loss of so many young lives as well as clamor
against the presumption that "it is sweet and fitting to die for one's
country".

"next to of course god america i" is absolutely not a patriotic poem. would
a patriotic poem include a lower-cased "america" in the title?

amy from United States
Comment 21 of 366, added on January 28th, 2007 at 10:56 PM.

Nadia, I really appreciated your comment! I am caught up on the "He" in
the poem's final line and not completely satisfied with the explanation
that He is a politician. Is it significant that He is capitalized while i
is not? Why drink a glass of water? Water has a lot of religious
associations including the forgiveness of sins and washing one's hands of
guilt. Or, perhaps the speaker is drinking water so that he will be able
to continue speaking. The rhetorical question, "shall the voice of liberty
be mute?" is interesting too. Does the speaker see himself as the voice of
liberty? I like the satirical tone, but am really lost on this final
line.


colleen from United States
Comment 20 of 366, added on December 18th, 2006 at 7:59 PM.

I think the whole poem is sarcastic.

First he starts out with "next to of course god america i" The "of course"
suggests that, even though church and state are supposed to be separate,
they are not, and God rules the country.
In the next line he says "land of the pilgriims and so forth". What does
he mean by "and so forth"? Could he be refering to the native americans
and mexican people that were here before us and just kind of got pushed
aside?
The inclusion of the two patriotically famous songs could be a mockery of
our superfluous patriotism, later stating that "we should worry in every
language even deafanddumb thy sons acclaim your glorious name by jing by
gee by gosh by gum".
He then ends it with the extremely sarcastic "beautiful... happy dead who
rushed like lions to the roaring slaughter... then shall the voice of
libert be mute?". I kind of think that the last line has a double meaning.
It could mean that the soldier who fought for liberty are now dead, but I
like to think that it is refering to how they had no say in what they did.
The soldiers were ordered to go and die, but had no choice. They were not
allowed to think for themselves, or decide for themselves if what they were
fighting for was right. Since this was published after World War two, he
could be refering to the conscription (draft).

That's my opinion, but no one can really be right.
I'm only 17 after all, so if you don't accept my interpretation, ignore it.

Chris S. from United States
Comment 19 of 366, added on December 14th, 2006 at 1:40 PM.

This poem by e.e. cummings is about a man mocking a politition in a
chauvinistic manor. He is adorting his country and ridiculing it at the
same time.
Allusions to the National Anthom and the other patriotic song about how
great america is. But then "deafanddumb", "mute liberty", "heroic happy
dead." Young, inieve people goig tono a war without knowing the cause or
purpose for it.

Tanya from United States
Comment 18 of 366, added on December 14th, 2006 at 1:40 PM.

This poem by e.e. cummings is about a man mocking a politition in a
chauvinistic manor. He is adorting his country and ridiculing it at the
same time.
Allusions to the National Anthom and the other patriotic song about how
great america is. But then "deafanddumb", "mute liberty", "heroic happy
dead." Young, inieve people goig tono a war without knowing the cause or
purpose for it.

Tanya from United States
Comment 17 of 366, added on May 20th, 2006 at 1:10 PM.

I love how this poem uses my country tis of thee, and the star spangled
banner. This poem shows the great respect and love we have for our
country!



Emily

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Information about next to of course god america i... (III)

Poet: e.e. cummings
Poem: next to of course god america i... (III)
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 2351 times
Poem of the Day: Jan 28 2007


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