For the poem "Bombed Last Night," what are the structures (for example, stanzas, verses, capitalization, etc.)?Bombed Last NightGassed last night and gassed the night before,Going to get gassed...

For the poem "Bombed Last Night," what are the structures (for example, stanzas, verses, capitalization, etc.)?

Bombed Last Night

Gassed last night and gassed the night before,
Going to get gassed tonight if we never get gassed any more.
When we're gassed we're sick as we can be,
'Cos phosgene and mustard gas is much too much for me.


They're warning us, they're warning us,
One respirator for the four of us.
Thank your lucky stars that three of us can run,
So one of us can use it all alone.

Bombed last night and bombed the night before,
Going to get bombed tonight if we never get bombed any more.
When we're bombed we're scared as we can be.
God strafe the bombing planes from High Germany.


They're over us, they're over us,
One shell hole for just the four of us.
Thank your lucky stars there are no more of us,
'Cos one of us could fill it all alone.

Asked on by hardworker

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auntlori's profile pic

Lori Steinbach | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

The poem "Bombed Last Night" is actually a song from the play "Oh! What a Lovely War!" by Charles Chilton.  Song lyrics are quite comparable to poems, so the same rules and observations generally apply.

Your question asks for commentary regarding capitalization, stanzas, and verses.  In the literary world we call those things the "conventions" of poetry (or really of any written work).  For example, the conventions of writing a book title are to capitalize the first, last, and all important words and then either underline it or put it in italics.  The conventions of writing dialogue are to use quotation marks in certain ways.  The conventions of poetry are somewhat dependent on the poem.

In this poem, "Gassed Last Night," the conventions are quite, well, conventional.  Each line begins with a capital letter, each line ends with a piece of punctuation, and each sentence ends with a period. Stanzas two and four are the chorus (this is a song, but poems can have choruses, as well).  Stanzas one and three are the two verses of the song/poem.  The rhyme scheme is not particularly complex, as the verses are written in simple AABB form.  There is not a particularly even metrical pattern for the poem, though as a song it undoubtedly fits a musical rhythm. 

I've included the site for the lyrics, below.  From my slight research, I think the poem is actually entitled "Gassed Last Night"; however, I did not change your question to reflect that because I'm not certain. 

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