In the poem "In Flanders Field" by John McCrae what is the dominant emotion?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would say that the dominant emotion here is patriotism.  This is not one of the WWI poems like those of Owen that talk about how terrible the war was.  This is a poem that asserts that the war was important and that the dead demand that the living continue the fight.

We can see this very clearly in the last stanza.  The speaker tells the living that they must take up the torch that is being thrown to them.  The dead will not lie easy unless the living keep fighting against the foe who killed them.

This is why I call this a patriotic poem -- its main point is that the living must continue fighting.  This tells us that the war has an important point and that the living must continue fighting for that cause.