It is yourself you seek
In a long rage,
Scanning through light and darkness
Mirrors, the page,

Where should reflected be
Those eyes and that thick hair,
That passionate look, that laughter.
You should appear

Within the book, or doubled,
Freed, in the silvered glass;
Into all other bodies
Yourself should pass.

The glass does not dissolve;
Like walls the mirrors stand;
The printed page gives back
Words by another hand.

And your infatuate eye
Meets not itself below;
Strangers lie in your arms
As I lie now.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Louise Bogan's poem Man Alone

1 Comment

  1. Tara says:

    I view this poem in a way in which it could be either Bogan speaking about herself or about another individual, perhaps one of her husbands. She never specifically says who this “man alone” is. The last stanza is particularly inisightful because the rhyme scheme continues, however it is only in the eye rhyme form which coincides with “infatuate eye.” However, there is indeed nothing there, just as there are “strangers” in her arms. Bogan is saying that this individual, whether herself or someone else, is alone becasue they do not know who they are and it is impossible to know others if you can not identify oneself first. The last two lines demonstrate this well; “Strangers lie in your arms/ As I lie now.”

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