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Do They Have Reason by Stephen Dobbyns - Book Report/Review Example

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In Stephen Dobyns's poem, "Do They Have A Reason," the poet addresses the subject of lost childhood innocence. He does this through the tongue-in-cheek perspective of an older narrative reminiscing about youth as though it were in the present. His light tone is reinforced through such wry observations of proposed occupations by the children, be they bank robber or doctor " but mostly we start out / idealistic"…
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Do They Have Reason by Stephen Dobbyns
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"Do They Have Reason by Stephen Dobbyns"

The poem then becomes an elegy for the lost conceit of Innocence. The final metaphor, friends missing while older boys bully the narrator, attempts to cement the lost abstract into a stronger example of experience.
The loss of Innocence relates to a loss of faith in all known rules, a new ocean of experience without any kind of compass to impose an arbitrary direction to one's progress. To underscore this theme, the poet uses free verse in a rough pentameter. The most traditional poetic device occurs in the first line, "Life begins, you make some friends," (line 1) which contains a simple internal rhyme. This being the most obvious use of rhyme in the poem, it seems to illustrate an initial starting point of rules and standards connecting to tradition. Read More
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