Thursday, September 13, 2007

Somewhere I have Never Travelled - A short analysis by: Jay Protacio M.)

It is a common reaction by all readers of Cummings that to analyze his works is a sacrilege. But for academic reasons, I have attempted to break down this already-audible poem to better understand Cummings’ brilliant command for words and images.

The first line, and also the title depicts the poet’s condition with regards to this particular poem and all the feelings that he aims to convey to his muse and to his readers. “Somewhere I have never traveled, gladly beyond any experience…” describes the poet’s inexperience with respect to his feelings towards his muse, as if he is in a place that he has never gone before. In this same stanza, Cummings describes how his muse affects him tremendously without much effort from her as seen in the third line of the first stanza. The last line of the same stanza however, describes the fragile situation they are in and perhaps this line reveals Cummings’ difficulty in expressing his love for his muse.

By the use of several tools of imagery, Cummings was able to depict the power of the muse over the poet, how she could easily open and close the doors of his emotions. And even with Cummings’ futile resistance, the muse is able to skillfully open and close him without even trying.

Cummings ultimately surrendered in the third stanza by stating that upon the wish of his muse he would stop and cease himself from expressing and finally disappear. The third stanza is the peak of Cummings’ declaration of unconditional love, despite the intensity of his love and despite his fear (compared to the rose’s fear of death), he was willing to sacrifice what he truly feels if that is his muse’s desire.

Finally in the last stanza, Cummings considered his felling towards the muse as a mystery; in the same manner, that love for him is a mystery. That he could never explain the woman’s effect on him and that no matter how hard he tries to compare the woman, his feelings and the situation to the world’s mysteries and beauty… he knows that he still will not be able to define or more so explain it. The last and final line of this poem described with great precision, how the girl can penetrate his deepest feelings when he created a parallel contrast with the inability of the rain to sip through the core of a rose bud.

In general, the flower or the rose that the poem speaks of is the poet himself or the feelings of the poet and how the muse has the power to open and close this symbolic rose upon her wishes.

After reading Cummings through this particular poem, it is but natural to say that he is effective in employing his skills and mastery of imagery. It is a love poem but unlike many love poems, Cummings gently sprinkled his poem with images while the poem gently oozed with sentimentality and intense feelings. And not only did he utilize the present existing metaphors and imagery but he also invented his own images as seen in “your eyes have their silence” which is deviant of the traditional imagery, “your eyes speak…” or any depiction of the eyes as means to communicate. Also in third and fourth line of the third stanza, where Cummings described fear. It is an effective poem because Cummings was able to get his message across using a manner cognitive of beauty and literary esthetics. He was capable of describing the intensity as well as the fragility of love… its mysteries by inventing and reinventing metaphors, similes and personifications.

Cummings once again led us into his world of images and allowed to us to explore the simplicity of his words and the complexities they represent through the most crucial and most sensitive of all metaphors; love and man.



For More Info and other Free Lit. Analysis please visit:http://jayprotacio.blogspot.com or email me at: jayblogspot78@yahoo.com.ph I’ll be happy to write you an essay about any lit piece for free.

10 comments:

Marj said...

Thank you very much. I somehow found your analysis very helpful and inspirational. Maybe this is a sign I should not lose hope just yet on E.E. Cumming's pieces of literature.

Have a nice day! :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much. I was looking through analysis for this poem and your profile in "about me" caught my eyes even more. I loved the way you wrote "husband to a beautiful goddess." :)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful, thank you for that interpretation

Anonymous said...

Beautiful, thank you for that interpretation

Anonymous said...

You note that Cummings utilized imagery, but never classified the imagery. Is it powerful? Mechanical? Weak? Rejuvenating? To say there is imagery present is as productive as stating that the poem is about love. We know this.

This is not meant to seems as snide as it might be considered, I know the internet has a sneaky way of twisting the text of tone into one persistently judgmental. I am very curious to hear your classification of his imagery. I would like you to know that the rest of your analysis, in my opinion, was very well structured, and aided my 12th grade understanding.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I love this poem so much (its one of my favorites) and I think your analysis hits the spot. One of my favorite lines in the poem is "Nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands." The way describe what Cummings was talking about (the rose and the rain drops <3) really was beautiful. Nice job and thanks.

Anonymous said...

What is worth a piece of writing if you cannot decipher what it is all about? This "poem" is just a babble; does not read any different than a Thesaurus open to a random page... A complete waste of life...

Anonymous said...

This analysis is absolutely beautiful. Thank you for enlightening the poetically challenged. Great poem,a bit hard to understand. Thanks for the help

Anonymous said...

Very helpful thank you.
Personally i think this poem demands too much from the reader.
I understood majority of this poem, though i still had to browse the internet to clarify.

Anonymous said...

In our Senior year in High School, my best friend gave me a cassette tape with the song: The First Time I Love Forever “where Cummings poem is narrated ... I knew what my best friend meant when he gave it to me..I am a BEST FRIEND for something according to the note enclosed with the tape: ..”Thank you for loving me for who I am …and for your eyes’ ability to calm me down, despite being quiet - in my worst depressing day! (No, it’s platonic never romantic)..Today, 24 yrs after - I found the tape and never been so curious what the poem truly meant and so I Gooled . Just like the rest, it is your profile that convinced me to read your analysis more than others. You definitely have way with words.. “a husband to a beautiful goddess...” sweeter, more sincere, more respectful than..” a husband to a hot chick lol..” At any rate, thank you for the analysis, I am happy I did not go this far of understanding the poem 24 yrs ago, I took it on face value and what the enclosed note said .. So thank you for not explaining it 24 yrs ago lol!!! it could have been too awkward for me to look at the gesture in a different light…it would have scared me and moved away and lose the friendship all together; or would have given us a chance to change our status and it could have ended in disaster..At least we are still Best friends until now that he is happily married in Canada with 2 beautiful kids and I am blissfully married for 13 years to a my man who addresses me as “my sweet thing!”-Ashi Mari