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Funeral Blues

Funeral Blues

by W. H. Auden

Funeral Blues Analysis

Symbols, Imagery, Wordplay

Form and Meter

A dead dude, mourners, a funeral, and a sad speaker? Sounds like an elegy to Shmoop. Elegies can take lots of different shapes and forms, since there are no rhyming or metrical rules for an elegy....

Speaker

Let's list what we know about the speaker. As we mentioned in our "Summary" of the poem, we don't actually know if the speaker is male or female (though we've been consistently referring to him as...

Setting

We think you got this one. This poem's set at a funeral. Go ahead, get it out of your system: duh.But here's the thing. This isn't about a small chapel, filled with loved ones in black. The setting...

What's Up With the Title?

The poem is called "Funeral Blues," and Shmoop thinks that's the perfect title. After all, it's a sad song (blues) about a dead guy (funeral). Done and done. As we discuss in our "In a Nutshell" se...

Calling Card

Auden was writing his poems during a time when all the cool poets were writing in free verse. These poets wanted to break poetry apart, make it less stuffy, more free and fresh. But not Auden. This...

Tough-o-Meter

"Funeral Blues" isn't too hard to understand, and you've got the title to clue you in on what's going down: someone has died, and the speaker is devastated. Not too difficult. But wading through Au...

Trivia

Auden paired up with composer Benjamin Britten for quite awhile. Together they wrote a whole lot of plays and songs, including "Funeral Blues." (Source.)U2 used a snippet of "Funeral Blues" in thei...

Steaminess Rating

It's a funeral.

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