What effect does Sara Teasdale's poem have on the short story "There Will Come Soft Rains"?  

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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Bradbury's use of Sara Teasdale's poem "There Will Come Soft Rains" complements the theme of his own short story by the same title.  Both poem and story alike show how nature will continue on even after mankind's demise.  Teasdale's poem soft natural imagery serves as a strong contrast to Bradbury's fully automatic house continuing on its day following a nuclear apocalypse.  Teasdale's poem portrays the birds and trees as being oblivious to humanity's wars and strife:

"And not one will know of the war, not one
Will care at last when it is done.

Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree,
If mankind perished utterly;"

Bradbury's short story draws inspiration from Teasdale's poem; in the end, even the fully-automated house cannot survive on its own.  An errant wind results in a fire which completely destroys the home; nature once again proves victorious.


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