JOY … weaving two violet petals for a coat lapel … painting on a slab of night sky a Christ face … slipping new brass keys into rusty iron locks and shouldering till at last the door gives and we are in a new room … forever and ever violet petals, slabs, the Christ face, brass keys and new rooms.

are we near or far?… is there anything else?… who comes back?… and why does love ask nothing and give all? and why is love rare as a tailed comet shaking guesses out of men at telescopes ten feet long? why does the mystery sit with its chin on the lean forearm of women in gray eyes and women in hazel eyes?

are any of these less proud, less important, than a cross-examining lawyer? are any of these less perfect than the front page of a morning newspaper?

the answers are not computed and attested in the back of an arithmetic for the verifications of the lazy

there is no authority in the phone book for us to call and ask the why, the wherefore, and the howbeit it’s … a riddle … by God.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Carl Sandburg's poem Brass Keys


  1. Fran G E says:

    It speaks of the joys of life of some faithful, dedicated, ordinary person. Then at the end of this life opening a door(s) into a new room or the next life. It questions, is there an after life, who can be asked if there is after life?

  2. chelsie says:

    its weird, its queer, lets go get a beer.
    well u go get a beer cuz i’m under-aged.

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