Crossing the Bar by Alfred Lord Tennyson: Poem Analysis

Topics: Death, River Thames, Life Pages: 3 (940 words) Published: March 4, 2014
In Crossing the Bar, by Alfred Lord Tennyson, the poem was written as elegy of dying person, the speaker compare transition of impending death and crossing the sand bar. The image of the Sea is used to represent the “barrier” between life and death. It was described as hard as saying good bye to love ones, eagerly hoping those who will be left behind will not sob or cry. The speaker is in the stage where he is ready to face death also imagining after life experience on what will it turn out after passing away, looking forward to meet god the creator when he finally crossed the bar.

The poem consists of four rhyming quatrain: A-B-A-B, C-D-C-D, E-F-E-F, G-H-G-H. It was written in alternating long and short lines, the poem uses alliteration “Sunset and evening star”. There is also assonance like “seems asleep” and consonance “clear call” on C-sounds. Diphthongs “no moaning” is present in the poem too. The poem also uses personification “Sunset and evening star, And one clear call for me!” and “seems asleep” as tides normally won’t sleep. Crossing the bar is an extended metaphor which is drawn-out beyond the usual words extended through out the poem. Metaphorically, the speaker compares the sandbar in the Thames River over which ships cannot pass until high tide, with natural time for completion of his own life’s journey from birth to death.

In Crossing the Bar, by Alfred Lord Tennyson, the poem was written as elegy of dying person, the speaker compare transition of impending death and crossing the sand bar. The image of the Sea is used to represent the “barrier” between life and death. It was described as hard as saying good bye to love ones, eagerly hoping those who will be left behind will not sob or cry. The speaker is in the stage where he is ready to face death also imagining after life experience on what will it turn out after passing away, looking forward to meet god the creator when he finally crossed the bar.

The poem consists of four...
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