Chicago Poems Questions and Answers
by Carl Sandburg

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What are some literary devices within the poem "Chicago" in Sandburg's Chicago Poems?  

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Sandburg uses anaphora a couple of times in this poem, which is the repetition of a phrase in successive lines (emphasis added):

And they tell me you are crooked and I answer: Yes, it is true I have seen the gunman kill and go free to kill again.

And they tell me you are brutal and my reply is: On the faces of women and children I have seen the marks of wanton hunger.

The repetition intentional to demonstrate the awareness of the speaker toward his beloved Chicago. He has heard the claims others have made against the city, and he acknowledges the truth in some of these statements. There are murders. There is hunger. But Chicago is more than its flaws.

Anaphora is used again near the end of the poem:

Under the smoke, dust all over his mouth, laughing with white teeth,

Under the terrible burden of destiny laughing as a young man laughs,

The speaker reiterates the position of his city through the preposition "under." This conveys the struggle of Chicago and presents it as a type of underdog. In spite...

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