68 Matching Annotations
  1. Dec 2015
    1. who scribbled all night rocking and rolling over lofty incantations which in the yellow morning were stanzas of gibberish

      again, the subjects the narrator speaks of truly believe in something greater than what their society offers, and maybe it is magic they believe in, but at the end of the night or as this line says by morning, they have not come up with anything actually coherent. However, it could be that their incantations are only gibberish to the non "mad" person and that is to be the point of them.

    2. who burned cigarette holes in their arms protesting the narcotic tobacco haze of Capitalism

      the narrator seems to be speaking the hypocrisy of the protesting of capitalism when they are also buying into with their need for cigarettes thus causing them to burn themselves in the process and perhaps further speaking to the madness the narrator is so focused on analyzing.

    3. listening to the Terror through the wall

      i feel like in connection to the rest of the line this refers to having spent your money on drugs which bring out a greater consciousness and thus the terrors or horrors that come to light about society.

    4. who drove crosscountry seventytwo hours to find out if I had a vision or you had a vision or he had a vision to find out Eternity,

      this poem is basically repeating how awful and tedious life is and that theres no resolve regardless of all the avenues a person explores

    5. bit detectives in the neck and shrieked with delight in policecars for committing no crime but their own wild cooking pederasty and intoxication

      the theme of of madness or psychotic break downs comes up over and over again in this poem

    6. who reappeared on the West Coast investigating the FBI in beards and shorts with big pacifist eyes sexy in their dark skin passing out incomprehensible leaflets,

      the subject of the narrator is constantly looking for something more fulfilling and exploring identities that just don't quite seem to fit them well at all, thus moving on from place to place

    7. Peyote solidities of halls, backyard green tree cemetery dawns, wine drunkenness over the rooftops

      it seems as if most of the experiences of the people the narrator writes about are made up almost, or at least very hazy and without meaning.

    8. who

      the repetition of the word "who" to start every new line for the first part of the poem creates a sort of rhythm that makes the poem sound like spoken word.

  2. Nov 2015
    1. Here is no water but only rock Rock and no water and the sandy road The road winding above among the mountains Which are mountains of rock without water If there were water we should stop and drink  335 Amongst the rock one cannot stop or think Sweat is dry and feet are in the sand If there were only water amongst the rock Dead mountain mouth of carious teeth that cannot spit Here one can neither stand nor lie nor sit  340 There is not even silence in the mountains But dry sterile thunder without rain There is not even solitude in the mountains But red sullen faces sneer and snarl From doors of mud-cracked houses If there were water  345 And no rock If there were rock And also water And water A spring  350 A pool among the rock If there were the sound of water only

      While there is no outright mention of a river like in the prior stanza there is a definite evoking of rivers in these lines. However, in this instance the river is all dried up. There is not water, no spring, only rock and mud cracked houses. House no longer viable for living can be implied through the use of mud crack due to the lack of water flowing. This concept of dried up streams and dried up sweat and mountains certainly alludes to the concept of a/the wasteland. In these lines, every source of water or hydration has dried up such as the "carious teeth that cannot spit" life cannot continue as normal.

      Furthermore, as the mountains remain dry and without life one can imply that they are silent, however, the lines evoke a further eeriness to the drying by stating that the mountains create a "sterile thunder" unwilling to bring about rain and therefore obsolete.

      In this reference of the river there is no life, no water to sustain it's existence which contrast the earlier reference to the Thames river which runs, incredibly exhaustive however, as it is been polluted with the waste of the town, another allusion to the wasteland. The river referenced here has been abandoned altogether, not even used for trash. The conflict here truly pushes the idea of the wasteland and even more so with the lack of the actual use of the word "river" in this stanza; as it has disappeared it is no longer referenced. There are other instances throughout the poem that play with the concept of irony especially as dead/alive, for example the opening lines "Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing/Memory and desire, stirring/Dull roots with spring rain./Winter kept us warm, covering/Earth in forgetful snow, feeding" one does not often think that anything can grow out of dead land or bad soil but here in the month of April the lilacs grow regardless. Winter keeping us warm seems like the most bizarre concept but this poem seems speaks to the solitude that comes with winter, the death like feeling in the air. The spring that usually brings back life culturally and biblically has lost its common concept/purpose in this poem right off the bat. Much like the "sterile thunder" how useful can plants and flowers grown from dead land be!

  3. Oct 2015
    1. You sang: Me an’ muh baby gonna shine, shine Me an’ muh baby gonna shine. The strong men keep a-comin’ on The strong men git stronger.

      song and art has always been part of african american culture and perhaps thats why hughes disapproves of the black artist trying to mold "white" art or be a "mainstream" artist.

    2. They made your women breeders, They swelled your numbers with bastards

      i really like this line because i find it critical of the popular myth of the "absent black father" when in fact so many families have been forcefully separated since the beginning of this country.

    3. O Ma Rainey, Li’l an’ low; Sing us ’bout de hard luck Roun’ our do’; Sing us ’bout de lonesome road We mus’ go.

      i dont think we read the poem "mother to son" in class but these lines evoke a lot of what that poem by hughes writes about.

    4. Dey comes to hear Ma Rainey from de little river settlements, From blackbottorn cornrows and from lumber camps; Dey stumble in de hall, jes a-laughin’ an’ a-cacklin’, Cheerin’ lak roarin’ water, lak wind in river swamps

      Brown writes in the style that Hughes advocates for, using southern dialect and admiring the art created by Black folk not aspiring to the "mainstream" art.

    1. like a raisin in the sun?

      one of the best responds to this poem i think, is A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry. It truly embodies this poem.

    2. He did a lazy sway . . . He did a lazy sway . . . To the tune o’ those Weary Blues

      these lines create a rhythmic pattern in this poem, as most of the rest of the poem.

    3. Besides, They’ll see how beautiful I am And be ashamed

      this is such an important quote. Hughes is no longer waiting for the acceptance of the greater majority, rather he expects it as all people of color should.

    4. My soul has grown deep like the rivers

      speaking to the resilience of the Black american, really Black people everywhere.

    5. I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.

      definitely feels like reference to the strong civilizations prior to imperialism and the slave trade.

    1. I want to be a poet, not a Negro poet

      again i get what he's saying against this quote, and in his context it creates a different meaning. however, the quote alone creates a standard where whiteness is the default and for an artist who isn't white that can be exhausting.

    2. Negro artist who can escape the restrictions the more advanced among his own group would put upon him, a great field of unused material ready for his art. Without going outside his race, and even among the better classes with their “white” culture and conscious American manners, but still Negro enough to be different, there is sufficient matter to furnish a black artist with a lifetime of creative work.

      more double consciousness and a concept i've heard before of the Harlem renaissance and the black art movement. Where does Black art become art for white folk and when does it remain truly art for and by black people and who judges.

    3. A very high mountain indeed for the would-be racial artist to climb in order to discover himself and his people

      I can see what Hughes is saying here, but at the same time he is kind of saying "this person isn't black enough" and sure belonging of a higher socioeconomic class removes a person of color from a lot of the struggles that a poor person of color deals with but it by no means erases their black identity.

    4. America–this urge within the race toward whiteness, the desire to pour racial individuality into the mold of American standardization

      this seems to continue to be an issue in the sense that people who are of color and also artist always get put into their representative boxes i.e. black male artist, chicana poet etc. it also reminds me of the 80s art movement for example Keith Harring and Jean Michel Basquiat, both very important and progressive artist but where most people (general population not artist folk) know Harring the same can't be said for Basquiat.

    5. “I want to be a poet–not a Negro poet

      i've heard this quote so many times in so many different contexts. definitely brings up double conciseness/ self awareness but fighting that concept.

  4. teaching.lfhanley.net teaching.lfhanley.net
    1. Dead mountain mouth of carious teeth that cannot spit
    2. brown fog
    3. The shouting and the crying
    4. he river’s tent

      a wet river has a tent which are meant as shelter to keep the insides dry? unless there is something about rivers i don't know about this line also seems like a juxtapose for the wet dry motif

    5. sea-wood fed with copper

      aside from the obvious wet dry sea wood contrast i think its interesting to also have the word copper in the line. from my understanding salt water is really corrosive to metals but not as much to wood. and the sea wood is being fed with copper. so this line is also kind of zombie ish.

    6. And drowned the sense in odours; stirred by the air

      drowned is typically associated with water as well as stirring but in this line the air is stirring

    7. urked her strange synthetic perfumes, Unguent, powdered, or liquid—

      the contrast of perfumes as either wet or dry

    8. Has it begun to sprout? Will it bloom this year

      does this line refer to the "wasteland"? has the city become so polluted socially and environmentally that corpses are not anything to think twice about?

    9. Oed’ und leer das Meer

      why are their so many references to other works in different languages?

    10. Bin gar keine Russin, stamm’ aus Litauen, echt deutsch.

      I wonder why the use of a different language to state that they aren't Russian

    1. chance. I chance to. I chance to to. I chance to

      more repetition

    2. That is the way we are one and indivisible.

      this sounds like an allusion to the american pledge of allegiance or a reference of some sort. I feel like that there is some sort of significance to this but again not sure what

    3. Cousin tip nicely. Cousin tip. Nicely.

      more repetition that is not obvious to understand or to see really. I like this break down of the one single line into 3.

    4. I love honor and obey I do love honor and obey I do.

      this almost sounds like repetition but is not actually. It seems like it connects to the poem as a whole but there is no obvious connection

  5. Sep 2015
    1. The pure products of America

      the mention of America, alone almost immediately identifies this poem as modernist. There seems to be some sort of fixation on the country in american modernist poetry.

    1. Yet many a man is making friends with death Even as I speak, for lack of love alone.

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    2. Love can not fill the thickened lung with breath,

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    1. The woods are lovely, dark and deep.

      does he create a sort of song tone to this line to further show his admiration for the woods, snow, and nature? why does it sound so cheery?

    2. My little horse must think it queer To stop without a farmhouse nea

      is he using the horse to compare or bring light to how others might feel about him stopping in the snow? is the horse representative of the average person?

    3. Whose woods these are I think I know.

      is he purposefully leaving out grammar to create a different meaning to this line?

    4. I shall be telling this with a sigh

      is he implying that this has been such an easy decision that theirs nothing grand about it? or does he regret his choice of roads?

    5. roads diverged in a yellow wood

      is there a significance about yellow roads? like "the yellow brick road"

    1. SEEDS i

      is there a reason why all the poems start out in all caps?

    2. tick, tick, tick, Tick, tick, tick

      the repetition of the tick in this poem creates a very anxious tone further stressing the angst that lines like " and what is love but a rose that fades"

    1. m feeling ever so much better! I don’t sleep much at night, for it is so interesting to watch developments; but I sleep a good deal in the daytime.

      sounds like the opposite of getting better

    2. She is a perfect and enthusiastic housekeeper, and hopes for no better profession

      this line sounds a little forced for some reason

    3. The color is repellent, almost revolting; a smouldering unclean yellow, strangely faded by the slow-turning sunlight

      again, very focused on details and extremely visual writing. I always find it kind of amazing when writers are able to describe concrete things such as walls, cars, etc in writing like this.

    4. flamboyant patterns committing every artistic sin.

      super detailed discription of the house and it creates a real vivid image of the house

    5. ungrateful not to value it mo

      omg this is incredibly sad and hard to read (not an actual annotation just more of a general comment)

    6. So I will let it alone and talk about the house

      everything that has led to this line subtly reminds me of "the awakening" by Kate Chopin it is the same tale in a sense, a women clearly suffering from some form of mental anguish but also being forced into a compulsion like "talk about the house" because they aren't allowed to express any of their real concerns. It is quite a sad read up to this point, and it reminds me of Chopin because i had a similar feeling when i read that.

    7. , assures friends and relatives that there is really nothing the matter with one but temporary nervous depression—a slight hysterical tendency—what is one to do?

      this still seams to be a common notion in the way people view mental illness today. The early mention of a "colonial mansion...haunted house" also sort of connect for me in the description of her mental state as far as this point in the story anyways.

    1. ,—like a tantalizing will-o’-the-wisp, maddening and misleading the headless host.

      clearly the emancipation proclamation did not actually do much for the condition of enslaved people, the poorly management of the movement to abolition still affects black communities today, those effects are still felt.

    2. He simply wishes to make it possible for a man to be both a Negro and an American,

      this also reminds me of the popular tendency for people to say "i don't see color" because even as far back as Du Bois it is clear that color is present and one must be able to be seen and felt and still be fully validated in order for people to truly co exist. The idea that some people are colorblind is bogus and really rather racist in its own annoying way.

    3. I know an excellent colored man in my town; or, I fought at Mechanicsville;

      again, it is clear that he is not seprating himself from the "other world" rather those in the other world are doing all that for him and for themselves. even the "understanding" white come out in micro agressions and almost a "white guilt" when approaching Du Bois

    4. The voice of my heart in my side or the voice of the sea, O water, crying for rest, is it I, is it I?

      such a great piece to begin an autobiographical work and it feels very much connected to the struggle Du Bois tries to articulate in most of his writing.

    1. In any previous age, sex was strength.

      is this a reference to being able to reproduce?

    2. Equally, he ignored almost the whole industrial exhibit

      It's quite interesting that anyone would be able to ignore "industry" at this time with all the changes that were happening in terms of industry and work.

    3. He had even published a dozen volumes of American history for no other purpose than to satisfy himself whether, by severest process of stating, with the least possible comment, such facts as seemed sure, in such order as seemed rigorously consequent, he could fix for a familiar moment a necessary sequence of human movement. The result had satisfied him as little as at Harvard College.

      This experience seems entirely tedious and compulsive, like a machine simply writing the same lines over and over again. It also sounds kind of sad when read with or without context

    4. neither had he heard of dynamos or automobiles or radium; yet his mind was ready to feel the force of all, though the rays were unborn and the women were dead.

      to me this speaks to how adaptable humans are as a species and even though our environments are always changing and evolving we tend to jump right in terms of technology.

  6. Aug 2015
    1. They Lion, from my children inherit, From the oak turned to a wall, they Lion, From they sack and they belly opened

      the shortening to "they lion" instead of "they lion grow" and subtle repetition speeds up the pace, or rather arrives at the climax faster of the inevitable, being the lion has been fed, grown and now has naturally become a predator to those (the society/gov) who fed him??

    2. From all my white sins forgiven, they feed,

      not sure but this feels like a jab at american greed and with the context of Levine's background in Detroit such a line would seem reasonable?

    3. Earth is eating trees

      This feels super cannibalistic that the earth would consume its on products, trees that grow from it. also "earth is calling in her little ones" extremely creepy and obsessive, the whole stanza sounds like a horror film really.

    4. Mothers hardening like pounded stumps, out of stumps,

      This line is actually pretty shocking, "mothers hardening" its rare to think of a mother as a hard or cold person, but also mothers are nurturing and these is a subject growing throughout the piece. The line is definitely added to make a point.

    5. Of industrial barns, out of rain, out of bus ride,

      this line definitely creates the sense of city industry happening. industrial barns= factory, bus etc.

    6. They Lion grow.

      the focus seems to be the lion (a predator) though it's done very subtly