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Musée des Beaux Arts
Musée des Beaux Arts
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Musée des Beaux Arts Analysis
Symbols, Imagery, Wordplay
Welcome to the land of symbols, imagery, and wordplay. Before you travel any further, please know that there may be some thorny academic terminology ahead. Never fear, Shmoop is here. Check out our...
Form and Meter
Free and EasyIt's almost as if Auden is toying with us at the start of this poem. See, the first couple of lines all have ten syllables in them. (Don't believe us? Count the syllables of lines 1-3....
What's interesting about our speaker is that he's pretty absent from the poem as a whole. No references to what he thinks or believes or ate for breakfast last Tuesday. No mention of his cats or hi...
OK, folks. Buckle your seat belts. This'll be a bit of a bumpy ride. Here are some of the settings that this poem brings into play:The Musée des Beaux Arts, a fine arts museum in Brussels, Bel...
This poem is pretty much like all of those thoughtful thoughts that you have when you come up with the perfect way to describe a really intense experience you've just had. You know that great song...
What's Up With the Title?
"Musée des Beaux Arts" is sort of like an occasion piece – that is, Auden could have called it something like "I happened to be at this art museum and saw this one picture and this is wh...
Plain-speakin'W.H. Auden is a master of form. You could think of him as a chameleon: just when you're ready to pin him as a formal poet, one who's careful to respect traditional rhyme and meter, he...
(3) Base CampThis little poem is a walk in the park, folks. It's got simple language, it tells a nice story, and, perhaps most importantly, it's actually pretty interesting. It sounds like a normal...
BFF: W.H. Auden and J.R.R. Tolkien. Our favorite poet and our favorite fantasy master? It's too good to be true! Yup, folks, Auden was best buds with Tolkien (of Lord of the Rings fame). And he was...
GBucolic landscapes and dying young men? That's about as unsexy as a poem can get, folks. Hey, it's hard to get excited about sex when you're so busy ignoring everything around you! And as our spea...
Historical ReferencesThe Old Masters (that's artists, folks) (line 1)Pieter Brueghel, "Landscape with the Fall of Icarus" (line 13)
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