Stripped
you’re beginning to float free
up through the smoke of brushfires
and incinerators
the unleafed branches won’t hold you
nor the radar aerials

You’re what the autumn knew would happen
after the last collapse
of primary color
once the last absolutes were torn to pieces
you could begin

How you broke open, what sheathed you
until this moment
I know nothing about it
my ignorance of you amazes me
now that I watch you
starting to give yourself away
to the wind

Analysis, meaning and summary of the poem by

1 Comment

  1. Deb Susman says:

    I read this poem in the early seventies and it stuck with me for years and years it was one of the first Adrienne Rich poems that i ever read. I then became in short devoted to Adrienne Rich as a poet in my opinion she is one of the 20th centuries finest an important poets.Her poems shift your soul and deepen your sense of the world close-up and far away.As of woman for me they touched me so deeply.My dearest friend died from ovarian cancer at 42 and the first thing i went to in my time of grief was that poem.The book The Will to Change just seamed to appear in my hand and my poem November 1968 just seamed to allow me to let go of the one I loved most in this world just a little easier.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Do you have any comments, criticism, paraphrasis or analysis of this poem that you feel would assist other visitors in understanding the meaning or the theme of this poem better? If they are accepted, they will be added to this page of American Poems. Together we can build a wealth of information, but it will take some discipline and determination.