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Rudyard Kipling My Boy Jack Analysis Essay

 

"Have you news of my boy Jack?”

Not this tide.

“When d’you think that he’ll come back?”

Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.

 

“Has any one else had word of him?”

Not this tide.

For what is sunk will hardly swim,

Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.

 

“Oh, dear, what comfort can I find?”

None this tide,

Nor any tide,

Except he did not shame his kind —

Not even with that wind blowing, and that tide.

 

Then hold your head up all the more,

This tide,

And every tide;

Because he was the son you bore,

And gave to that wind blowing and that tide!

About this poem

The Jungle Book's Rudyard Kipling wrote ‘My Boy Jack’ in memory of his only son John.

At 18 he  was a 2nd Luitenant in the Irish guards and went missing in 1915 during the Battle of Loos.

Kipling, who was staunchly anti-war wrote many poems and often incorporated the poetry into his books.

Kipling never really recovered from the loss of his son and in several books such as Sea Warfare he portrays his son's qualities and traits.

See all the poems as we publish them this week at mirror.co.uk/forthefallen

A selection of these poems are extracted from The Penguin Book of WW1 Poetry, £8.99 Penguin

The unique gadget below allows you to search the full records of over one million casualties of World War One.

You can search by any combination of first name (or initial), surname, street or town/city. 

You don't have to fill in all the boxes - you can fill as many or as few as you like.

The database allows you, for example, to search for people with the same name as you, who came from the same city; or just to see who died from the street where you live. 

The data comes from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, who kindly allowed us to share the astonishingly rich data that they have painstakingly put together over the years.

 
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My Boy Jack

(1916)

Kipling wrote this poem about his beloved son John (also known as Jack). During World War I Jack was an 18 year old Lieutenant in the 2nd Battalion, Irish Guards. Jack went missing in September 1915 during the Battle of Loos. This poem was first published as a preface to a story in his book Sea Warfare written about the Battle of Jutland in 1916.

"Have you news of my boy Jack?"
Not this tide.
"When d'you think that he'll come back?"
Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.

"Has any one else had word of him?"
Not this tide.
For what is sunk will hardly swim,
Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.

"Oh, dear, what comfort can I find?"
None this tide,
Nor any tide,
Except he did not shame his kind --
Not even with that wind blowing, and that tide.

Then hold your head up all the more,
This tide,
And every tide;
Because he was the son you bore,
And gave to that wind blowing and that tide!

In 1997 British actor David Haig wrote the play My Boy Jack. In 2007 it was adapted for ITV television. Haig stars as Kipling alongside actor Daniel Radcliffe who portrays Jack. The fictional award-winning movie follows Rudyard Kipling, his wife Caroline (played by Kim Cattrall), their daughter Elsie and son Jack in the events leading up to, and the after-math of his death during World War I and the Battle of Loos.



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