Because I Liked you Better A.E. Housman

Because I Liked you Better
A.E. Housman
By Meijie Hu
 Because I Liked you Better is written from the poet’s
point of view, this can be shown as the poet frequently
uses ‘I” and the fact he is directing it to someone. It is
written like as he is writing a letter to a lost friend, it
has a personal point of view from poets perspective.
 The poem is broken down to 4 stanzas, it is
straightforward and the language is plain so readers
can understand what he is talking about.
 The tone created in the poem is different, the first half
has a loving tone where the poet expresses his last
moment with his friend and this is shown by their last
words they may have exchanged with each other
such as “goodbye” and “forget me”. The last 2
stanzas, the tone is more firm and secure and he is
telling us he doesn't care anymore, this is shown as
he uses imagery of death, the tones between the two
stanza’s may be different as the third stanza talks
about death which can relate to his friends death or
that he may have moved on with his life.
 The point of view is a first person narrative from
the poets perspective, the tone and language
style the poet has used can show us this is a
letter to his friend, this poem also gives us a hint
that the poet is homosexual and his letter like
poem is to express his love or to keep his
promise to his friend that he may never see him
again, this is shown by the fact that his friend
says goodbye and forget me, which proves the
poets homosexuality even more as the poet may
have confessed to him and the friend doesn’t
want any part in it.
 The title of the poem immediately gives us a hint
this may be a love letter to a lost one or one he
cannot see again.
 The pattern of this poem is that each stanza gives us
a ABCB rhythm, each stanza is separate and ideas of
the poets love and his promise he kept to his friend
follows on through each stanza. There is a repetition
of the word “you”, this could prove a fact he still cares
about the friend even though they may not see each
other and that he misses him.
 The opening of the poem is a introduction of the poet
expressing how he kept his promise to his loved
friend. This promise may be that the friend doesn’t
want any part in the homosexual relationship with the
poet and doesn’t want to see him anymore.
 The first two stanzas and the last stanza is completely
different to the third stanza, while the first two stanzas
are about the poet expressing his last days with his
love and his promise he kept, the third stanza shows
us he doesn't care anymore, this is ironic as he is
directing this poem to the friend showing the readers
he does care. The last stanza the poet starts talking
about the promise he kept.
 The language used is formal as it is directed towards
one person, it is connected with the point of view as it
is written like a letter from the poet to his love.
 There is not much imagery present in this poem, the
only imagery present is about coldness and death,
which is shown in the third stanza as “the dead man’s
knoll, you pass”, the imagery of coldness and death in
the third stanza can be related to him not caring about
or feeling nothing of his lover anymore.
 The imagery of death may symbolise the death of the
friend and that this whole poem may be about him
missing his friend and how they could've lived a good
life together. The death of the friend can also be
shown by the fact he talk’s of the headstone’s name.
 Death can be related to not feeling anything because
when you are dead, your body is cold and you cannot
feel a thing.
 There is a bit of irony, this is mainly related to the
last two stanzas. The irony can be seen as in the
last two stanzas, the poet is talking about how he
feels nothing of his lover and he doesn’t care
anymore, this may be due to the fact that
everyone moves on with their lives and they don't
let things such as love hold them back. This is
ironic as the poem is directed towards the lover,
and he still talks about the promise in his last
stanza which shows he still cares for him.

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