An Obsessive Combination Of Onotological Inscape, Trickery And Love

Busy, with an idea for a code, I write
signals hurrying from left to right,
or right to left, by obscure routes,
for my own reasons; taking a word like writes
down tiers of tries until its secret rites
make sense; or until, suddenly, RATS
can amazingly and funnily become STAR
and right to left that small star
is mine, for my own liking, to stare
its five lucky pins inside out, to store
forever kindly, as if it were a star
I touched and a miracle I really wrote.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Anne Sexton's poem An Obsessive Combination Of Onotological Inscape, Trickery And Love


  1. Debbie Tam says:

    I am familiar with this feeling of codes. The process of writing is personal and as Sexton is described as a “confessional” poet, she is letting the reader know she writes in code. Although her feelings are usually quite raw in her poetry. The simple RATS to STAR realization to me is that same feeling I get when I discover how much I love words. Finding the secret meaning of things. Seeking, always seeking, the secret meaning of things. This obsession with words is one that I share with her. And so when she says it’s a miracle. It is. It was the words that prolonged her life. The obsessive need to share the words.

  2. Kiesha says:


  3. brooke renzi says:

    i like this poem and i used it for an english project on anne sexton and the poem thanxz-brooke

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