nobody loses all the time

i had an uncle named
Sol who was a born failure and
nearly everybody said he should have gone
into vaudeville perhaps because my Uncle Sol could
sing McCann He Was A Diver on Xmas Eve like Hell Itself which
may or may not account for the fact that my Uncle

Sol indulged in that possibly most inexcusable
of all to use a highfalootin phrase
luxuries that is or to
wit farming and be
it needlessly

my Uncle Sol’s farm
failed because the chickens
ate the vegetables so
my Uncle Sol had a
chicken farm till the
skunks ate the chickens when

my Uncle Sol
had a skunk farm but
the skunks caught cold and
died so
my Uncle Sol imitated the
skunks in a subtle manner

or by drowning himself in the watertank
but somebody who’d given my Unde Sol a Victor
Victrola and records while he lived presented to
him upon the auspicious occasion of his decease a
scrumptious not to mention splendiferous funeral with
tall boys in black gloves and flowers and everything and

i remember we all cried like the Missouri
when my Uncle Sol’s coffin lurched because
somebody pressed a button
(and down went
my Uncle

and started a worm farm)

Analysis, meaning and summary of e.e. cummings's poem nobody loses all the time (X)


  1. Bill S says:

    Found this because it’s referenced in Sam Peckinpah’s film Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia. Gives it a whole new meaning when you read the poem and find out “winning” is being worm food

  2. benjosephcuyacot says:

    the poem speaks till eternity

  3. Patty says:

    Although this poem is dark it was enjoyable to read. The theme ‘nobody loses all the time’ hits right on the mark, although uncle Sol has a rough life, in the end he found something he could do very well.

  4. Signor Froust says:

    This poem is strange, it has funny and bad at same time. Supprised how many nerds on this website posting comments to strange poems, Go Sens!

  5. Juicy says:

    this poem is really depressing.
    but GOOD.

  6. Josh says:

    It’s amazing how e.e.cummings can combine a serious, borderline depressing story with a unique concept and somewhat macabre humor and have the point come across better for it.

  7. michael says:

    the theme is right in the title/first line. . .nobody loses all the time! his uncle sol was a huge failure in life, but in death he finally started a successful farm — with worms. it uses common cummings techniques like contrasting dark humor and lightness, and irony. it’s actually a bit more straightforward and less open to interpretation than much of his work. 🙂

  8. daniel says:

    I luv is poem. Its funny and dark at the same time.
    But, i’m having trouble finding a theme to this poem. Is there none? Is it just to make us laugh? Help me out.

  9. Bjumbda Bjemdia says:

    in africa we like poem. it show us how we get out of tought situation.

  10. Christina says:

    This is so funny–at my sleepaway camp, which happens to be a music camp in Massachusetts, our choir director created a four-part piece to go along with this poem. We first learned it in rhyme one week and then put our music parts to it the second week in time for the final concert! It was so much fun–this is a funny poem that now I have an attachment to.

  11. Glauco says:

    Oh! I dont believe that im the firs person to comment this poem… It´s one of my favorites Cummings poems. It´s hard and funny at the same time.. It´s just so cool! =P

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