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"Elegy for My Father, Who Is Not Dead" is written in free verse. Instead of adhering to an overtly formal pattern of meter or rhyme, it follows the path of the human voice. Hudgins's poems in general are quite conversational in tone and simple in word choice. He frequently includes snatches of overheard dialogue in his poems, capturing the raw, sometimes raunchy language of those around him. While "Elegy" contains no such dialogue, it does witness and interpret in contemporary language the almost childlike conception of eternity his father holds: "he talks about the world beyond this world / as though his reservations / have been made."