What is the central theme of Alice Moore Dunbar Nelson's two poems "I Sit and Sew" and "April is on the Way"?
Both of these poems concern war and the poet's response to it. In "I Sit and Sew," for example, the speaker finds her position as a woman, who has to do nothing else but "sit and sew" whilst she imagines all the men who are suffering and dying in war, intolerable, and stifling. Note how this is shown in the following quote:
My soul in pity flingsAppealing cries, yearning only to goThere in that holocaust of hell, those fields of woe—But—I must sit and sew.
April is on the way!
The infinite miracle of unfolding life in the brown February fields.
(Dear God, the hounds are baying!)
Murder and wasted love, lust and weariness, deceit and vainglory—what are they
but the spent breath of the runner?