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Comment 14 of 84, added on July 17th, 2009 at 3:55 PM.
I have loved this poem for decades. My husband and I, before he was my
husband, loved to ride on the Staten Island ferry. When we married, my
sister read the poem at our celebration. When he died, she read it at his
funeral. Recuerdo: I remember when we were young and poor but very happy.
Recuerdo: I remember when the best things in life were so very simple, as
in an all-night ride on the ferry (now they make you get off the ferry,
probably for security reasons, and get on again) or a bag of fruit or a
cheerful greeting to or from an old woman or a smelly ferry that was, of
course, still a boat out on the water and thus still an adventure.
Recuerdo: I remember when it was easier to feel free.
Martha from United States
Comment 13 of 84, added on May 28th, 2009 at 2:19 PM.
its about memories. how vague they are when you finally look back them.
you can never fully remember what happened.
elizabeth from United States
Comment 12 of 84, added on March 22nd, 2009 at 1:29 AM.
I think this is a poem about youth, freedom and two people in love.
although they were tired they were merry because they were together.
although it was bare and bright and smelled like a stable they looked into
a fire,leaned across a table and lay on a hilltop underneath the moon
because they were in love and together. love changed their perception of
their night on the ferry.
they ate an apple and a pear but it was their sharing together the apple
and the pair that they enjoyed.they bought a newspaper which they didn't
read because they enjoyed being together more than reading the newspaper
and though the wind blew cold and the sky was wan they saw the sunrise as a
bucketful of gold like their love.By hailing good morning mother to the
lady in the shawl, giving her the apples and pears and all their money they
were sharing the love they that they felt with someone.
from United States
Comment 11 of 84, added on September 19th, 2007 at 7:22 PM.
Edward K has the gist of it! It is first and foremost a New York
experience. The ferry ride cost a nickel, each way - lovers could spend
hours in New York harbor watching the stars and skyline for virtually no
outlay. Even though the Ferry was public transportation, riders were sparse
at night - granting a degree of privacy, and even intimacy despite it being
"Bare and bright" They're overflowing joy of being with each other spills
over, by chance, to an early morning denizen of the streets, who I'm sure
was unprepared for the gaeity with which their minimal but whole-hearted
philanthropy was bestowed. The couple was wise enough to retain subway fare
home (survival 101 in NYC)
Colin from United States
Comment 10 of 84, added on May 21st, 2007 at 10:00 AM.
I feel that Gabriella's thoughts on the poem are what I also see. Although,
my teacher made faces when I used it in my presentation of this poem. But,
for example, the part "It was bare and bright, and smelled like a stable."
I think that isn't literal but more symmbolic for their boredom and that it
stank and was not much fun.
Kyle from United States
Comment 9 of 84, added on May 8th, 2007 at 7:25 AM.
The meaning i get from this poem is completely different, and you may call
me crazy, but at least appreciate my thought process. I think the poem is
about immigrants when they arrive in this country on
Staten Island, and the handlers who help them cross. The fruit~symbolizes
the fruit of America, they're not sure where they got it,but they have it.
The sun is a bucket of gold. Perhaps the golden opportunity, a beacon of
light in a new land. The shawl covered head represents an immigrant woman
they helped on the ferry, and she thanks them for the fruit, the
opportunity. And finally they gave her all their money because their help
was the richest gift to give.
Anonymous from United States
Comment 8 of 84, added on April 26th, 2006 at 9:32 PM.
I agree with everyone else on the fact that the peom is about two people
spending time together, but it seems that everyone is missing the last
stanza. "And She wept, "God bless you!" for the apples and pears,/ And we
gave her all out money but our subway fares." It seems to me that they
were doing a favor for some old woman. They gave all their money to hear
and apples and pears they bought. They spent time together while doing
something nice for someone else.
Ryan from United States
Comment 7 of 84, added on March 29th, 2006 at 8:07 PM.
Today I read this poem for the fist time in my English class. It really
reached out to me in a way that I am unable to fully express. It was just
so easy for me to elaborate how I felt about this poem when the teacher
inquired. I will have to agree, but only to a certain extent. Do you not
think that this poem could even be talking about two guys? Absurd? Maybe.
But I think that the relationship between these two people are very
platonic and that their is no sign or motive to state that it is a "couple"
involved in a romantic way so to say. It seems to me these two know
eachother so well and have a way with one another that they are able to
enjoy eachother's company in any circumstance. It does not matter that they
had to ride a ferry all day, I mean it was exaughsting. These two had one
another to look past that and make the best out of a night that did not
seem to be a rendevous. It is the times like these in life that you truly
appreciate the little things. Everyweight is taken off of you when you have
someone to easily confide in and can put you at ease the way this
friendship couple could.
gabriella from Canada
Comment 6 of 84, added on October 10th, 2005 at 6:35 PM.
this poem is about the relationship of 2 lovers, enjoying what is known as
a 'cheap date' (the ferry rides are free) b/c this couple is poor and
overworked. it is a celebration of a poor couple's experience, mentally,
physically, and sexually.
anna from United States
Comment 5 of 84, added on September 22nd, 2005 at 9:01 PM.
Actually, this poem is about two male friends who thought that WW1 had just
ended. They were too tired to sleep so they went out and celebrated.
Bessyba from United States
This poem has been commented on more than 10 times. Click below to see the other comments.
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