The Patriot: About the poem
The Patriot may be a dramatic monologue written by the renowned English poet and playwright Browning. he’s documented for his dramatic monologues and is widely celebrated together of the foremost poets of the Victorian era. during this poem, Browning talks about Politics, Patriotism, Religious faith, and therefore the harsh reality of the leaders who are faithful to their sense of patriotism. It speaks about the sacrifice of such leaders who are misunderstood by the people.
The speaker of the poem may be a patriot. The poem may be a monologue of this ‘patriot speaker’ who narrates his tale to us as he has been taken to the scaffold to be executed publicly for his ‘misdeeds’. He tells us of his situation: how he was once well-loved by everyone and the way he’s now despised by an equivalent person. The patriot is innocent of getting done any misdeeds, and it’s only out of the misunderstanding of the folks that he’s being put to death. His death sentence is for the incorrect reason, and although he’s tried to influence the people to concentrate on him, it’s done him no good.
‘The Patriot’ may be a harsh critique of public sentiment and morality. It stresses on the purpose that not all decisions made or supported by the people are the proper decisions, or maybe in their own interest. The poem features a sense of universality thereto as history has witnessed the increase and fall of the many such ‘patriots’ throughout its course — a grim reminder that life is uncertain!.
Form and structure of the poem
The Patriot features a curious structure of six stanzas of 5 lines each. a fast scansion reveals that the poem in not supported a strict meter. The length of a majority of lines is nine syllables, with a couple of going a syllable or two beyond that mark. rather than the meter, the musical quality is achieved by the careful placement of words.
The poem features a clear rhyme scheme of Ababa which is carried and maintained throughout all the stanzas of the poem. like any good poem with a definitive rhyme, this one too seems to possess made a prodigal use of assonance and consonance.
In the first two stanzas, the poem introduces the conditions of the past. The third stanza is the poet’s revelation on how and why the conditions changed, which too against him. The fourth and therefore the fifth stanza contrasts the past with this. The last stanza is the poet’s acceptance of his condition and an expression of his hope. It is often seen that the poem follows an orderly sequence of a story where the conditions of the past are told, the impetus for the change is discussed, this state is shown and a final conclusion is drawn on all things as an entire.
The Patriot: Stanza wise Explanation
The poem starts with the patriot describing an occasion – a grand public welcome – that happened a year ago thereon exact same day. he’s reminiscing the past, and he builds an image for us as he remembers that day. His walking path was covered with lots and much of rose petals, with myrtle mixed in them. the trail was festooned with these flowers for him.
People standing on the roofs of their houses cheered for him as he went by. They were overjoyed to ascertain him. The spires of the church – pointed tapering roofs we generally see on old cathedrals and similar buildings – were covered with flaming flags that the people had put up for a celebration. People were overwhelmingly delighted to greet their hero and were enthusiastic to ascertain him as he has gone by.
It is only logical to assume that this grand celebration must be as a result of some achievement on the speaker’s part. Perhaps it had been a victory in war or the assemblage for fighting one, or winning a well-liked election to an office, or being nominated as a ruler, or even something else. It is often assumed at now within the poem that it concerned the folk highly, and that they were happy on the occasion. The patriot is seen as a public hero during this stanza who is greeted with much love and affection by the commoners.
In the second stanza of the poem, the speaker continues narrating the old story from an equivalent day a year ago. He describes the event to the readers. People were rejoicing by ringing bells and therefore the entire atmosphere was thick with its noise. They were standing on some quite old structure and cheering for the patriot with their cries rocking the walls.
Now the patriot says, had he asked the general public for love or money – even the dearest things on which their sustenance depends – they might have readily given it to him; such great was his image. they might then ask him what else he wanted.
We can see the exuberance of the people at the sight of the. The poet is trying to determine the type of recognition the speaker had through this stanza.
The third stanza of the poem is that the speaker’s discourse on what all he did for his country. It begins with the poet giving subtle regard to the old Greek mythological tale of Icarus and Daedalus. Icarus was the son of the good Inventor Daedalus and therefore the story revolves around the escape of those two men from a high tower where they were held prisoners by making wings out of bird feathers and wax. Icarus, stunned with the power of flight, flies too on the brink of the sun, which causes the wax in his wings melt and his eventual fall which kills him.
Just like Icarus, the speaker admits that he too was overly ambitious and ‘leaped at the sun’. Giving the sun his “loving friends to keep” may suggest that his actions somehow caused the death of his close friends. Here again, we will hypothesize that the patriot is talking about some battle that claimed the lives of his dear ones.
He did everything a person could have done to form things right. Despite this, he’s facing his undeserved end. He calls to attention the miserable state he’s in. The terms ‘harvest’ and ‘reap’ are closely seen as common metaphors for karma, and therefore the poet uses this to convey that what he’s facing isn’t what he truly deserves. He says it’s been a year since that day. Here, the poet ends the speaker’s flashback.
The speaker returns to this and talks about what he sees. He describes this setting and during away contrasts it with the one on an equivalent day a year ago. Now he has been convicted and is being led to the gallows to be put to death.
As against the setting within the first stanza, now the place is all empty. Now there’s nobody on the roof-tops cheering him. Only old men who are taken down by palsy (a disease) and unable to cross the edge of their houses are watching the patriot as he marches towards his death.
The reason why nobody is there to ascertain the speaker is because people have gathered at the Shambles’ gate, the gate of the gallows, to ascertain him die. The people want to be where the action is. The speaker further makes the heart-touching comment that the simplest sight is at the gate of the slaughterhouse, or at the very foot of the scaffold.
The fifth stanza is the continuation of the previous one and further describes the speaker’s humiliation at the hands of the people. The poet starts with filling up the setting even more. it’s raining because the speaker is walking towards the scaffold. His hands are tied behind by a decent rope – so tight that it cuts his wrists. He has now arrived closer to the ‘Shambles’ Gate’ where all the people are gathered. The patriot is in his own mind, knowing the steadfast certainty of death before him.
As he’s walking, he thinks he’s bleeding from his forehead. He can only feel the trickling of blood. People throwing stones at him are causing the injuries. So stones have replaced the petals of roses! He says that the people that are throwing stones are those who have a lively mind, and are conscious of his ‘misdeeds’. The speaker doesn’t seem to be angry with these people for throwing stones at him. It suggests, that despite the treatment he’s receiving, he doesn’t blame the people; he knows that they need to misunderstand him.
The last stanza of the poem reflects on the patriot’s death. it’s filled with philosophical and non-secular ideas. “Thus I entered and thus I go” – his entry and exit from life, position, and people’s minds within the presence of numerous others – sums up the speaker’s life well.
He says that in (his) triumphs, people have dropped (him) down dead. this means that he looks at his predicament as a triumph. He believes that he stood by the proper things and thus considers himself victorious in defeat.
The final three lines of the stanza affect the ideas of the speaker. once more we see Browning’s stout religion. He believes that God might say “Your sins were already washed away once you died. The people sought thereto. They punished you; what now does one expect from me? you’re now freed from all corruption”. Thus, the patriot thinks that the punishment he came to the mortal world has purged him, which he hopes to travel to heaven rather than hell. He feels safer knowing that God knows he stood for what he thought was right and thus he is going to be safe under him.
As a conclusive note, we must remember that it’s impossible to determine the gullibility or innocence of the patriot within the poem. On one hand, we see the speaker himself admitting that he did some misdeeds, whilst on the opposite hand we see him as a patriot who is mistaken — a minimum of the title suggests that. it’d be in order that he’s guilty of some things he did which he thought were right. it’d even be in order that he’s truly innocent and is just put to death because the people wish so.
However, the poem ends on a note of optimism with Browning’s own philosophy “God’s in His Heaven, and all’s Right with the World”. The ‘Patriot’ believes that it’s God who will reward him consistent with his true merit. On the closing tone, this poem resembles Browning’s other poem, The Last Ride Together.