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Created with Fabric.js 1.4.5 A Song in the Front Yard By Gwendolyn Brooks Ive stayed in the front yard all my life.I want a peek at the backWhere its rough and untended and hungry weed grows. A girl gets sick of a rose.I want to go in the back yard now And maybe down the alley,To where the charity children play. I want a good time today.They do some wonderful things.They have some wonderful fun.My mother sneers, but I say its fineHow they dont have to go in at quarter to nine. My mother, she tells me that Johnnie Mae Will grow up to be a bad woman.That Georgell be taken to Jail soon or late(On account of last winter he sold our back gate).But I say its fine. Honest, I do.And Id like to be a bad woman, too,And wear the brave stockings of night-black lace And strut down the streets with paint on my face. Poem AnalysisIn this poem, a young girl is describing her desire to break out of her quiet life in the "front yard", where hermother tells her it is safer. Despite her mother's warnings, she wants to go to the "back yard", where "charity children play" and "have some wonderful fun." Structure and DictionThough her word usage here makes her seem young and naive, her sense of acceptance towards those in the "back yard" allow her to stand out above her mother (and others) that look down upon them. Therefore, the diction in this poem goes from a young and naive tone, to accepting and open-minded. This poem is also written in free verse, meaning there is few rhyme and the stanzas vary in length. The two most common poetic devices used in this poem are end rhyme and enjambment,and both are used to give rhythm to the poem.The poet uses end rhyme ("grows and "rose", "play" and "today", etc.) to show how the speakerfeels about the "front yard" and "back yard". The poet uses enjambment to describe the strong feelings the speaker has towards her views of the back and front yards ("I want to go in the back yard now...My mother sneers, but I say it's fine.")
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