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Analysis and comments on Diving into the Wreck by Adrienne Rich

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Comment 22 of 52, added on April 18th, 2008 at 5:57 PM.

Why can't this just be a poem about a ship wreck? Why do you have to find
some hidden meaning with every poem?

Comment 21 of 52, added on March 26th, 2008 at 3:37 PM.

When I first started to read the poem I thought it was about a reporter
going into the war to capture and experience events that had been going on,
regardless if they were a man/woman. As I read further down they would
describe how days/nighhts were perceived to them as days were spent there.
I think Rich was writing from a Soldier/Marines type of view. Even if I am
wrong about my views I do not believe that Rich was writing about broken
marriages- or suicides or anything that has to do with our own problems ..I
believe she was trying to define as she saw it and how it affected everyone
in general being a man/woman.

Isabel from United States
Comment 20 of 52, added on February 11th, 2008 at 9:38 PM.

Line 55 "I came to see the damage that was done" echoes the title of Neil
Young's song "The needle and the damage done" released a year before Rich's

Zack from United States
Comment 19 of 52, added on January 2nd, 2008 at 9:55 PM.

I believe the comment by Patrice Kapur a few boxes down is the most
accurate analysis. I must say, good analysis, sir. Some great insights,
especially about the bias of the reader going into the poem.

And whoever said this poem is boring, I challenge you to increase your
knowledge of poetry. I found poetry extremely boring before I learned of
their techniques. Once you have a better understanding of the techniques of
poetry, it's a whole new world reading it.

Casey from United States
Comment 18 of 52, added on December 18th, 2007 at 12:09 PM.

i hink this poem is really boring and oo long

kira kepka from Chile
Comment 17 of 52, added on November 26th, 2007 at 9:03 PM.

Interesting comments about what the wreck stands for. Personally, I
interpreted as the past.

Nicole from United States
Comment 16 of 52, added on May 14th, 2007 at 11:41 PM.

Without providing analysis line by line, I have always interpreted this
poem as a metaphysical one. Viewing the diver as a spiritual being taking
human form and experiencing the physical realm. If you are a spiritual
being and you assume human form, your body or feet would seem to be "absurd

Matt Levesque from United States
Comment 15 of 52, added on April 25th, 2007 at 4:37 AM.

What a great piece of work! I haven't read this since college, and it's
better than I remember it--Paul Volponi

paul volponi
Comment 14 of 52, added on April 26th, 2006 at 11:28 AM.

i really enjoyed analyzing Rich's poem. I personally think she is caught
between her feminist views and an experience she is trying to describe as a
woman, something that made her feel devalued, as well as used. I think she
expressess it very well throughout the poem, but she does find herself
using single phrases that sound like she needed to add in to justify her
point of view.

Jason from United States
Comment 13 of 52, added on March 27th, 2006 at 3:31 PM.

I think that there is an unfortunate tendency among poetry readers to view
a writer’s work within the narrow prism of what the reader knows about the
writer’s personal life. I think that this approach may be useful in
deciphering the meaning of poems written by relatively inexperienced poets,
but it makes no sense in analyzing this work, which was completed by one of
our country’s most penetrating and accomplished writers.

Rich is not talking about strictly personal issues (marriage, suicide,
etc.) in this poem; rather, she is thoughtfully and deliberately talking
about the wreckage of our society and the need to go beyond myth (the STORY
of the wreck) so that we can assess the damage actually being caused by our
social structures, as well as recognize the treasures contained within
them. Only by doing so can we correct serious social problems and
simultaneously retain those social norms that are healthy and productive.

Rich takes us on this voyage as a genderless being early in the work,
pointing to a concern about gender-based social definitions, among others,
in the poem. By the end of the piece, she expands her view beyond gender
and addresses the reader as both an individual and part of a collective
whole, directing us to look at the wreck of our society so we can
(presumably) change its course. In the last line, our names do not appear
in the book of myths because the pervasive, patriarchal and limited views
of our society contained in such a book does not match the reality of
individual lives.

Patrice Kapur

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Information about Diving into the Wreck

Poet: Adrienne Rich
Poem: Diving into the Wreck
Added: Jan 31 2004
Viewed: 1566 times

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