Wife vs. Husband or Parent vs. Child ?
Im confused lol. is the conflict in this poem between a a couple(wife/husband) or between a parent and a child.
there are many lines
you have not traced on my palms
you think you know me
when i speak
you nod knowingly as if
you've read my mind
and are only politely acknowledging t
he confirmation of my spoken words
but you cannot possibly know w
hat i've been contemplating
my head is full of blood
but you show no fear
and i do not trust my hands
which feel to me like stones
you do not cower when i approach
though i am like a runaway train
and i can hear you voice
cool and steady
while my brain screams profanities
into the air around your ears ,
our past had given you no reason
to be afraid but still i am surprised you cannot see
the danger burning brightly in my eyes
the fire i am struggling to control
as i sit stewing in the kitchen's false
with tears my daughter
comes to me
frightened by what she cannot see
afraid tonight to sleep
i hold her in my arms
singing soft words of comfort
feeling her heart quickly
beating against my chest
knowing before i can think
that i have forgotten us
for our stupid little war
knowing in the incandescent light t
hat anger will never move me
as delicately as she has moved me this
2 Answers | Add Yours
I'd not heard of this poem before it appeared on the forum yesterday. At first I also thought it was about a husband/wife (or adult couple), but the more I looked at it, the more I thought it was about a parent/child struggle.
In section I, I read a parent's frustration about a child (perhaps a teen) who acts like she is listening, but is actually tuning out the parent.
Section II alerts the reader to the rage that the parent feels toward the child. It sounds like the rage is unexpressed, although the parent is surprised that the child hasn't detected the feelings, strong as they are.
In Section III, it seems that the child does realize that there is a problem. It frightens her, rendering her unable to sleep, and she comes to the parent for reassurance. The parent's rage subsides as they make physical contact.
I don't know if there is a "right" answer in this case. I could argue either way. But to me the flow of the characters indicates that it's most likely between parent/child.
I've never heard of this poem, but I'm going to say it's about a husband and wife argument. There are a couple things that specifically make me think this, as does the overall feel of the poem.
Specifically, I think the ending of the poem suggests that the parents have been fighting. When the daughter comes out to snuggle with the speaker, it does not sound as if the speaker has been fighting with her. Also, the screaming of profanities line suggests that it is a fight between adults.
The overall feel of the poem also suggest to me that this is a fight between adults. There is no sense to me that the two who are fighting are not equals -- I don't feel that the speaker is trying to raise the person he (?) talks about. Instead, he sounds more like the other person is his equal and they are not getting along.
That's my opinion, for what it's worth.
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