Thank you for the opportunity to help you with your question!
The tone of a poem is the attitude you feel in it — the writer's
attitude toward the subject or audience. The tone in a poem of praise is
approval. In a satire, you feel irony. In an antiwar poem, you may feel
protest or moral indignation. Tone can be playful, humorous, regretful,
anything — and it can change as the poem goes along.
When you speak, your tone of voice suggests your
attitude. In fact, it suggests two attitudes: one concerning the people
you're addressing (your audience) and one concerning the thing you're
talking about (your subject). That's what the term tone means when it's
applied to poetry as well. Tone can also mean the general emotional
weather of the poem.
Sometimes tone is fairly obvious. You can, for example, find poems
that are absolutely furious. The Scots poet Hugh MacDiarmid didn't care
for mercenary soldiers (men who fight not because they believe in a
cause, but because someone is paying them to fight). Here is
MacDiarmid's very angry "Another Epitaph on an Army of Mercenaries":
Please let me know if you need any clarification. I'm always happy to answer your questions.
Jul 19th, 2015
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