Points of View Commentary Essay

890 Words Nov 8th, 2011 4 Pages
'Points of View' Commentary

'Points of View', written by Lucinda Roy, is a poem that features different points of view (as the title suggests) on the subject of water: those of women collecting water in, what can be assumed to be, an African country and those of a person living in a modernised (possibly a 'Western') country. Furthermore, Roy seems to be critical of the aforementioned Western lifestyle and this poem presents an underlying moral that everybody should be grateful for what they have, regardless of how basic those things are. Roy's poem is comprised of two main stanzas; the first of which details the women's daily struggle to provide water for their families. The term “scoop up” evokes an image of a woman scooping up
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The poem does shift into the first person in the second stanza, which brings about an immediacy and allows for great sympathy from the reader – which, ironically, isn't necessary (the narrator seems unaware of the important of water, considering that there is no trouble in finding it). In the beginning half of the second stanza, in contrast to the first stanza, the narrator details how easy it is to serve water and seems unaware of its importance to life. By compartmentalizing the “beast in ice” and then serving it to distance friends, Roy is comparing the two points of views of collecting and serving water: the women in the first stanza have great difficulty in collecting water and so will only serve it to their immediate family, whereas the person in the second stanza can afford the luxury of handing out water to distant friends. The final part of the poem starts with the question, “What do I know of water?”; it appears as though the narrator has questioned her own beliefs about water and then turned to a different society for comparison to her own. After asking the question, she appears to go back in time, swimming through rivers “thick with time” (possibly a reference to how water has always been a part of human history, the eyes symbolic of the water 'watching' us), to ask the women mentioned in the first stanza to show her what water means to them. Which,

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