How do the words of the poem Amends, by Adrienne Rich, celebrate the beauty of nature so powerfully?

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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Adrienne Rich's poem Amends is a powerful poem which illuminates the power and beauty of nature.

There are very specific words in the poem which evoke a reader's sense of the beauty of nature.

In one image, the moon is seen laying its cheek on the beach. This image shows one of an intimate nature. When one lays their cheek on another, it shows a special kind of relationship (either that of a parent and child or one of a romantic relationship). Either way, the love is unmistakable.

Another image which shows the beauty of nature is "it licks the broken edge." Here, the moon is again being referred to. Here, one can see a deeper image of love. Instead of the human love illustrated in the previous line, a more animalistic love is seen. Picture a mother (animal) licking her baby. This shows the intimate relationship animals have for their own. Another image which one can see is the licking of a wound (compounded by the "broken edge"). Again, a sort of animalistic love is seen (in either the licking of a wound by a mate or of the licking of an animal's own wound). Regardless, each image shows one taking care of either their self or the one they "love."

In the end, the words chosen by Rich show both the love and beauty which nature holds and provides.


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