Let the snake wait under
his weed
and the writing
be of words, slow and quick, sharp
to strike, quiet to wait,
—through metaphor to reconcile
the people and the stones.
Compose. (No ideas
but in things) Invent!
Saxifrage is my flower that splits
the rocks.

Analysis, meaning and summary of William Carlos Williams's poem A Sort Of A Song


  1. Val says:

    The poem itself is the whole metaphor.
    Life is full of evil
    and poet have to decide how to react on it.
    He can’t be like a snake,
    but to be like a stone means to be
    like one of a crowd:
    there is a saying that living with wolfs,
    one should react on everything as a wolf too.
    A word is a poet’s brand, so
    he is above evil and full of patience.
    A snake also is known as a symbol of wisdom.
    So a poet studies snake’s behavior,
    but his word are like flowers.
    May be the poem is about it, who knows.

  2. georgia says:

    i dont like this it is not my typ can ou put samething els aboy girls whould like a lot please

  3. anahit says:

    I think the poet is advising the other poets to wait till the aspirations to write a piece of poem comes to them and make the outcome sth great and fascinating.

  4. ılker says:

    I think this poem is about writing.ıt ıs a sort of a song about wrıtıng.the snake is a book at the begınnıng of the poem.the ınk goes on the paper lıke a snkae slowşy goes on the gorund. slowly and snakelıke motıon ıs attrıbuted to wrıtıng

  5. Joe says:

    The Poem is about the power of slow moving things. The flower, and the snake waiting to strike. The lantern illuminates the world

  6. Vargas says:

    a great image that rock is solid but the animated are much powerful as they split the rock sooner or later.
    is that a idea for the breakthrough of everything concerned?

  7. farzaneh says:

    I feel the poet is showing the power of poetry versus
    solid life.

  8. P. says:

    The poem talks about life and opportunities in life. Someone should not be afraid of trying something new and just enjoy everything.

  9. B.E. says:

    Let the song strike you, is what he is saying. Take my word for it, (or not)

Leave a Reply to ılker Cancel 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Your email address will not be published.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 by William Carlos Williams better? If accepted, your analysis 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.