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"A Troubadour, I Traverse All My Land" by Dennis Brutus is a Petrarchan (Italian) sonnet. Italian sonnets are defined by two quatrains and a sestet following the rhythm of iambic pentameter. The content of the opening quatrains is meant to explore a problem or situation, while the closing sestet draws a conclusion.
Brutus was a strong opponent of South Africa's apartheid system, and his political views are evidenced in his poetry. In "A Troubador, I Traverse All My Land," the speaker (who we assume is Brutus himself) explores the restrictions that have been imposed on the citizens of the land. He goes on to say that he will fight against the "captor's hand" until he is "cast-off" by those who mean to oppress him. So, the sonnet explores a situation similar to that of Brutus's own life and struggle in South Africa.
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