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Denise Levertov - People at Night

A night that cuts between you and you
and you and you and you
and me : jostles us apart, a man elbowing
through a crowd.          We won't
look for each other, either-
wander off, each alone, not looking
in the slow crowd. Among sideshows
under movie signs,
pictures made of a million lights,
giants that move and again move
again, above a cloud of thick smells,
franks, roasted nutmeats-

Or going up to some apartment, yours
or yours, finding
someone sitting in the dark:
who is it really? So you switch the 
light on to see: you know the name but
who is it ?
But you won't see.

The fluorescent light flickers sullenly, a
pause. But you command. It grabs
each face and holds it up
by the hair for you, mask after mask.
You   and   you and I   repeat
gestures that make do when speech
has failed   and talk
and talk, laughing, saying
'I', and 'I',
meaning 'Anybody'.
No one. 

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Added: Mar 17 2005 | Viewed: 4778 times | Comments and analysis of People at Night by Denise Levertov Comments (3)

People at Night - Comments and Information

Poet: Denise Levertov
Poem: People at Night
Poem of the Day: Feb 20 2006

Comment 3 of 3, added on April 6th, 2006 at 9:14 AM.

it seems to me that poem says the split between reason and emotion,night makes me see something emotional i don't like to see, night is mad and emotional i is lost at night.

li jiana from China
Comment 2 of 3, added on April 5th, 2006 at 12:02 PM.

this is a really good poem i liked it alot

joey
Comment 1 of 3, added on February 25th, 2006 at 10:51 AM.

This poem is very interesting. It shows the unsure feelings that we have in our minds. I thought that it was very well portrayed throught the situations that occured in the poem.

karessa from United States

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