We real cool
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We Real Cool. By Gwendolyn Brooks. The Poem http:// www.poets.org / viewmedia.php / prmMID /15433. THE POOL PLAYERS. SEVEN AT “THE GOLDEN SHOVEL”. We real cool. We Left school. We Lurk late. We Strike straight. We Sing sin. We Thin gin. We Jazz June. We Die soon .

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We Real Cool

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We real cool

We Real Cool

By Gwendolyn Brooks


The poem http www poets org viewmedia php prmmid 15433

The Poemhttp://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15433

THE POOL PLAYERS. SEVEN AT “THE GOLDEN SHOVEL”.

We real cool. We

Left school. We

Lurk late. We Strike straight. We

Sing sin. We

Thin gin. We

Jazz June. We

Die soon.

Take a least THREE NOTES during the audio of this poem!


The grammar

The Grammar

  • Look at the construction and grammar of the sentences in this poem. What does that tell you about the pool players in general?


Diction

Diction

  • Gwendolyn Brooks says that when reading the poem, one must “say the "We" softly.”

  • What does saying that “we” softly help us realize about the pool players that are saying it? (hint: think about at what times we say things softly)


Diction1

Diction

  • Look at some of the verbs that Brooks uses: “lurk” and “strike:” what do these words make you think of? How do they make you view the pool players?

  • Now look at the sentence, “We jazz June.” What do you think that means? Think about what type of month June is and what it might mean to “jazz” that month.


Structure

Structure

  • Why would Gwendolyn Brooks space the poem as she does? Why would she end the line after “we?”

  • How does this structure relate to the way the reader should say the word “we?”


Rhythm

Rhythm

  • What is the rhythm of this poem?

  • When does the rhythm change? How does that impact the meaning of the poem?

  • How might the title connect to the ideas that you talked about above (hint: look especially at the last part of the title and look for a bit of contrast in the name of the establishment where they are playing pool)


American dream

American Dream

  • Isn’t it weird that the pool players seem arrogant about “dying soon”? What type of life do these pool players wish for?

  • What is Brooks saying here about the type of American dream that these pool players have? How does she feel about their dream? How can you tell this?


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