The Man He Killed
by Thomas Hardy
The Man He Killed Questions
Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.
- What's the takeaway here? Is this an anti-war poem? Or is Hardy merely pointing out one of the downsides to war?
- Aside from finding it "curious," how do you think this speaker really feels about having killed a man? Is he as casual about the whole thing as his words would seem to suggest? Or can you find any reason to think otherwise in the poem?
- What's the effect of having this poem be written in a strict meter with a strict rhyme scheme? Does that sing-songy effect undercut the poem in any way, or is it just right? What makes you say so?
- Why do you think this is a spoken poem? Where do we imagine this guy talking? Is he maybe at a bar with his real friends? Would that add anything to the poem?
- Why did the speaker shoot the other guy, really? Can you find the true answer anywhere in the poem, or is it left open to interpretation?
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