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Remains Summary & Analysis
by Simon Armitage

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"Remains" was published by the British poet Simon Armitage in 2008 as part of his collection The Not Dead, a series of war poems based on the testimonies of ex-soldiers. Instead of detailing conflict, however, these poems confront the aftermath of war and the traumatic memories that ex-service people might struggle to cope with. "Remains" specifically focuses on a soldier who was involved with killing a man caught looting a bank during conflict in what is implied to be the Middle East. The poem is characteristic of Armitage’s conversational style, using colloquialisms and everyday speech patterns alongside vivid imagery to offer a realistic portrait of a person haunted by grief, guilt, and trauma.

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