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The Cremation of Sam McGee

The Cremation of Sam McGee

by Robert Service

Analysis: What's Up With the Title?

This one seems pretty straightforward to us. The title tells us about the main event in the poem and who it happens to. Thanks to that heads-up, we start the poem wondering who this Sam McGee is, and when and where and why he was cremated. That’s the trick to a good title; it tells the reader just enough, but not too much. It leaves us curious, establishes a little bit of suspense. That’s something the whole poem does really well, actually, telling us just a little at a time and winding us up for that big surprise ending.

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