EVERDAY, PRAGMATIC LIFE IS BORING/BAD:
"What need you, being come to sense"
- you = workers, anyone who isn't a romantic/idealist, government for not funding art gallery.
- sounds accusational, aggressive.
- sense = sibilance - makes it sound more aggressive, bitter and angry.
- contrasts to "delirium of the brave" - being ironic/ sarcastic or is he saying that having sense is a bad thing.
- is it sensible to not be idealistic - don't get killed - but he sounds angry with them.
- scathing, disappointed, bitter, angry.
"But fumble in a greasy till"
- fumble = desperate, implies lack of ambition, drive or passion, sounds clumsy and irratic.
- greasy = disgusting, more pathetic.
"Add the half pence to the pence"
- repitition of pence underlines obsessive materialism, especially because pence is such a small quantity.
"And prayer to shivering prayer until"
- contrasts to "but little time had they to pray"
- wasting their time - could be doing more important things.
- wasting of time emphasised by repitition of prayer.
- shivering makes it sound more pathetic and pointless.
"You have dried the marrow from the bone?"
- gross image.
- bone marrow is necessary for living - idealism/ purpose is necessary for living.
- killed their spark of life - pitious of them.
- you = accusational.
- rhetorical question = rallying them, makes it sound more bitter/ angry.
"For men were born to pray and save"
- mocking - ironic contrast of saving money to saving lives and saving Ireland/ idealism/ romaticism.
- praying - wasting time again - contrast to idealist having no time to pray.
- men - sarcastic - saying their cowardly and not men - contrast to idealists.
"And what, God helps us, could they save?"
- nothing has changed, Ireland is still awful - evokes guilt.
- even they couldn't save anything - sound hopeless.
"Was it for this the wild geese spread"
- repitition makes it sound more bitter and angry.
- this is obviously bad as it isn't worth their sacrafices - they wanted romanticism and got misery.
- mocking them and making them feel guilty.
"For this that all that blood was shed"
- tugs on heart strings - vivid euphamism
"For this this that Edward FItzgerald died, And Robert Emmet and Wolfe Tone"
- tugging on heart string - evoking guilt - especially because they are specifically named.
- logically we want to be fumblers but in our hearts we want to be idealists.
Enjambement in first stanza = ranting to his audience. esp. "But fumble.......shivering prayer"
ROMANTIC IRELAND IS POSITIVE/ GOOD:
"Yet they were of a different kind"
- past tense = sounds wistful
- idealists didn;t…