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Classic and Contemporary Poetry: Explained

AMERICA, by             Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography

"America" is a poem by Robert Creeley that was first published in 1967. The poem explores the tensions and contradictions at the heart of American society, as well as the personal struggles of the speaker.

Explanation:

The poem begins with the speaker noting the beauty of the natural landscape in America, before quickly shifting to a more critical perspective. The speaker notes the poverty and inequality that exist in America, as well as the violence and fear that pervade the society. The poem then shifts to a more personal focus, as the speaker reflects on their own struggles with identity and belonging. The poem ends with the speaker acknowledging the ongoing struggles and contradictions of American society, and the need to continue fighting for a better future.

Poetic Elements:

  • Form: The poem is written in free verse, with no set rhyme scheme or meter. The poem is structured as a series of short stanzas that build on one another, with a clear narrative arc.
  • Imagery: The poem contains vivid sensory imagery that emphasizes the natural beauty of America, as well as the poverty, violence, and fear that exist in the society. The imagery is often stark and vivid, highlighting the contradictions and tensions at the heart of American society.
  • Tone: The tone of the poem is critical and reflective, with a sense of frustration and anger underlying the speaker's words. The poem emphasizes the ongoing struggles of American society, as well as the personal struggles of the speaker with identity and belonging.
  • Theme: The poem explores the themes of America, poverty, violence, fear, identity, and struggle. The poem highlights the tensions and contradictions at the heart of American society, as well as the ongoing struggle for a better future.

Conclusion:

"America" is a powerful and evocative poem that explores the tensions and contradictions at the heart of American society. The poem uses vivid sensory imagery and language to convey the speaker's reflections on the natural beauty of America, as well as the poverty, violence, and fear that exist in the society. The poem emphasizes the ongoing struggle for a better future, both on a societal level and on a personal level. Ultimately, the poem is a call to action and a reminder of the ongoing struggles and contradictions of American society.

Poem Snippet:

"America you don't really want to go to war.

America it's them bad Russians.

Them Russians them Russians and them Chinamen.

And them Russians."


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