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Analysis and comments on "Gay" is the captivating cognomen by e.e. cummings

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Comment 16 of 256, added on January 22nd, 2006 at 10:00 AM.

I am wondering what possesses one to comment on a poem. Presumably you all
have read the poem. It seems to mean little to many of you. Why bother
commenting at all? I would like to posit that the poem, or poetry in
general, has evoked in you a sense of resentment. Some have lashed out at
the poem as though you are thinking, “this will show those eggheads.” I
would hope that exposer to the world of poetry, even if it only rases
resentment, would prompt one to try and discover why people would waist so
much time and energy. I suppose that the poem’s intent is beyond your
narrow world view. “Gay” in the poem is the young lady’s name. When the
poem was written the term was not associated with homosexuality. Cummings
is contrasting the narrators world with that of the young lady. Gay is a
socialite who is suppressing, not just sexuality but any impulse that is
associated with the animal nature of humans. The narrator’s description of
her shows a derisive feeling towards Gay’s narrow view of the world. As
they walk through the zoo the animals a mating. This upsets Gay and later
she states that she would like to see animals that are stuffed, “ Miss Gay
had nothing to say to the animals and the animals had nothing/to say to
Miss Gay/during our return voyage, my pensive companion dimly remarked
some-/thing about "stuffed/fauna" being "very interesting. . . " The
theme is constant through the poem. When they separate Gay goes into a
Y.W.C.A. Which while evocative of the Village People’s song Y.M.C.A. has
nothing to do with it as the song came out long after the poet died. The
Y.W.C.A. was part of an American social movement called the “Charter House
Movement.” At the time the poem was written there was a social debate
about the falling morals of society. Termed a “Social Crises” because the
poor were not going to church and this was seen as leaving them vulnerable
to Marxist ideologies. The Charter House movement were organizations that
were formed to get the poor back in church. Organizations like the
Salvation Army, Y.M.C.A. Good Will, Y.W.C.A. all find their roots at this
time. That Gay goes that was and the narrator goes to the nearest “
helen moller/dancers, whom he considered "elevating--that is, if dancing
CAN be ele-/vating” (strip club). Contrast the separation of art from the
“high society” and “morality” from the artist. Gay in the end is “behind
glass” much like the way she would prefer to see animals. This is a poem
which evokes a great deal about how one is tied to both human society and
human animal needs. As language changes we need to be careful not to
associate new meaning on old poetry. I hope this will assuage some of the
fear and anger some of you exhibit towards poetry. Perhaps ignorance is
not bliss.

Jeff from United States
Comment 15 of 256, added on January 6th, 2006 at 10:06 AM.

HEY I THINK YOR POEMS ALL COOL AND ALL BUT WERE DO YOU GET YO
ISPIRATION....IM NOT GAY OR ANYTHING BUT I HAVE NOTHING AGAINST IT...BUT IM
STILL NOT GAY THOUGH....HECKK NO...MY HUSBAND WOULD PROBABLY KILL ME BUT
NICE POEM.........

FED_EX from Samoa
Comment 14 of 256, added on August 20th, 2005 at 11:36 PM.

don't wear your wrists out and be sure to clean off the keyboard of Mommy's
computer when you're done.

whadda buncha lamerz

Roll Eyes from United States
Comment 13 of 256, added on July 12th, 2005 at 10:48 AM.

Cummings does not mean 'gay' the way your sick minds would imagine it. He
is talking about a pristine innocent young lady who isn't sexy at all, as
he says 'unasociated with the libido' so in fact its just the opposite as
you all think.

ConqueringId from United States
Comment 12 of 256, added on May 19th, 2005 at 8:03 AM.

hey eden! my mom and dad said that u were all wrong and that u need to grow
up! just because i'm 5 doesn't mean i can't be gay! so get used to it and
grow up!!
p.s. thank u 4 your time!!!

no name from Brunei Darussalam, Negara
Comment 11 of 256, added on May 17th, 2005 at 8:11 AM.

Hey eden thier r always goin to be gay's Bi's Tri's. Should just get over
it.

Caleb from Australia
Comment 10 of 256, added on May 6th, 2005 at 7:39 AM.

hey! i loved your poem! i just wanted to know is it bad to be trisexual? i
have a girl friend and she has 3
*&^%&(&* i got to go c ya

emily d. from Luxembourg
Comment 9 of 256, added on May 5th, 2005 at 2:34 PM.

some of you are just discusting. i think some of you are overacting a
little. just because people are gay you dont have to make it sound like
you are. i know gay people and they most of the time share nothing about
it nor do they want to. grow up


Eden from United States
Comment 8 of 256, added on May 5th, 2005 at 8:02 AM.

i loved your poem if u were alive i woud marry u! but i want to go write a
poem about being gay to. because i'm bisexual! se ya hotness

stephani c. from Norway
Comment 7 of 256, added on May 5th, 2005 at 8:02 AM.

your poem was so moving i just want to keep reading it. i am so gay that
i loved it. g2g _patrick-

patrick from Bulgaria

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Information about "Gay" is the captivating cognomen

Poet: e.e. cummings
Poem: "Gay" is the captivating cognomen
Added: Jan 31 2004
Viewed: 1402 times
Poem of the Day: May 19 2011


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