Friday, January 11, 2008

Mary Oliver's "Cold Poem" Shows Us Our Own Sweet Devouring

I believe this poem hangs on the obscure wording of “suet.” ... The beauty of “Cold Poem” is that each measured stanza is a window into its own small part of the whole, each containing a movement of its own. The opening lines seem claustrophobic, setting the scene and the pace for the rest of the poem. The alliterative hard C’s kick us in the shins as we get the feel of the biting cold. It is winter, seemingly an arctic one. “Almost unbearable.” Then the hard C’s transform into another alliterative movement within a movement, from “unbearable” to “bunch up,” “boil down,” and a repetition of “bear.”

Get more analysis at the World Class Poetry Blog.

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