O What is That Sound
O what is that sound which so thrills the ear
Powerful, don't you think? I wish I could write with anything approaching that kind of authority. The repetition of words and the number of syllables in each stanza create the feeling of boots marching, getting inexorably closer. The poem's strong rhythm builds the tension almost unbearably.
It's interesting to note that he first two lines of every stanza except the last features the woman speaking, the second voice being the man. However, the voices can be switched, producing a different meaning to the poem; Auden doesn't specify who is speaking what lines.
Here is a link to W.H. Auden reading this poem himself, well worth a listen.