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‘The Broken Chain’ by Ron Tranmer focuses on the feelings of grief that a family experiences after one of their much-loved members passes away from some unimaginable illness or accident. In order to describe the loss they have suffered, the poet uses a metaphor of a broken chain to describe it.
The poet Ron Tranmer is renowned for the inspirational and hopeful quality of his poetry, which has made him a popular contemporary poet. In 1940, he was born in the small town of Jerome, Idaho. As a poet, Tranmer has published three books of poetry to date, beginning with his very first poem when he was eight years old.
We little knew that day,
God was going to call your name.
In life we loved you dearly,
In death, we do the same.
It broke our hearts to lose you.
You did not go alone.
For part of us went with you,
The day God called you home.
You left us beautiful memories,
Your love is still our guide.
And although we cannot see you,
You are always at our side.
Our family chain is broken,
And nothing seems the same,
But as God calls us one by one,
The chain will link again.
It is the loss of a loved one that is explored in Ron Tranmer’s poem ‘The Broken Chain’. He examines how family ties are broken.
At the beginning of the poem, the speaker is directing his or her words toward a specific audience member, someone who has passed away from the world. While the speaker and his family members were unaware that this loved one was going to die on this day or that “God was about to call your name,” the speaker explains how everyone on this planet still loves the deceased person to the same degree they did when they were alive.
This poem describes how everyone is devastated about the death of this person, but the speaker emphasizes that despite everyone’s grief, this person did not ascend to heaven alone. As they passed away, memories and love passed along with them. One day, they will all be reunited in Heaven at God’s side to relive their memories.
It is a tone that is both mournful and hopeful at the same time. The speaker, as well as the family members for whom they are speaking, believes that even though they have suffered a significant loss, everything will remain the same in the afterlife when everyone is reunited with their loved ones. There will be a “relinking” of the “broken chain.”
A family member’s death is the theme of this poem. After the final lines of the poem, readers realize that the deceased, to whom the poem is addressed, is a close relative of the speaker. There has been an irreversible change in the family dynamic as a result of their loss. This fact is well known to all those around the speaker.
We do not know the exact identity of the speaker. Nevertheless, they are likely speaking from a communal perspective since they use the third-person pronoun “we.” In this poem, the speaker conveys the feelings and ideas of the surviving family members after the intended listener has passed on to the next world.
In this poem, the poet is likely trying to soothe a personal loss or help someone close to them who has lost a loved one heal. The poet also seems to have written this poem with the intention of other readers, outside of their own family circle, finding it and feeling uplifted by its message. This is because it contains few details.