Strand Poem Analysis

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In examining Mark Strand’s book, New Selected Poems, it becomes clear that Strand is very different from Bukowski. Mark Strand seems to have had more of a traditional education and it reflects in his poetic form. His poems have a structure, but are still modern and almost free verse yet at the same time are not. That being said his poems are very enjoyable.
The first poem that stood out was “Sleeping with One Eye Open” in this poem Strand is describing a personal experience as well as also describing how it feels to be human sometimes. This seems to be a recurring theme with Strand; he typical does not write about his everyday life but more about the human experience. Moreover, in this poem Strand talks about an experience in which he becomes
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In this poem Strand is describing the elderly sitting on a porch letting the day wash over them. Almost as if they are waiting to die. A person could argue that “Old People on the Nursing Home Porch” is a figurative poem of what it is like to experience death. Especially when the poem uses phrases like “reaches out to take the world away” or “where each will lie alone” it appears that Strand is describing another great human state (Strand 8).
Another poem worth examining is “What to Think of”. In this poem it appears that Strand is stepping away from his usual themes. “What to Think of” is not a very symbolic poem, but it goes to great lengths to describe a person using symbolic metaphors; for example when the poem states “you are the prince of Paraguay” or “floating down from Minas Gerais” (Strand 33). This poem appears to be describing a person in a Mardi Gras parade. A person that Strand seems to be attracted to, it almost reads like a Bukowski poem. This is attention-grabbing because it shows that Strand is fairly flexible as a
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He then describes his relationship with his wife as lying “in her arms” and lastly, his bond with his daughter is defined as her “real baby” (Strand 61). Lastly, Strand goes on to state he “will grow into death,” and that his life is “getting smaller” (61). What the meaning of these relationships is a dual statement. The first is part of meaning of the poem is that Strand shows what he is to the most important people in his life. To his mother he was something to be adored, to his wife he was a companion and to his daughter he is a nurturer. He provided a need to all these women and in some ways he is saying they are objectifying him. The purpose of the poem is to map out the stages of his life first as a child, then a husband, followed by a father, and lastly Strand writes about his

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