This may come as a shock—are you sitting down? Good. "Home-Thoughts, from Abroad" is a pretty popular poem in England. It's not hard to see why, after all. In twenty lines, it does as much as any tourist board could do to promote the country's image. Songbirds, orchards, buttercups—what's not to love? Sure, it leaves out little details like… the entire city of London. And, yes, it actually only gives us what the speaker remembers about England, not what he's really seeing. But, um, did we mention the songbirds? Why haven't you booked your flight already?
Questions About Visions of England
What ideas of England are communicated by the poem's descriptions?
In what ways does the poem compare England to other countries?
Is this a patriotic poem? Why or why not?
How realistic is this vision of England? What parts of the poem support your answer?
Chew on This
The vision of England set forth in this poem is just that—a vision, not reality.
This poem is actually a political poem. Its job, essentially, is to promote England and Englishness.