An analysis of thirteen ways of looking at a blackbird a poem by wallace stevens

A poem must be, Auden noted, more than anyone can say about it. It may be a part of a poetic figure in one stanza, a more or less literal reference in the next. Most of the things we read require us to follow the thread of some idea or argument, but this poem has no complicated narrative, no "message," no unified theme.

Nobody wants to disappoint a blackbird. The recognition that each sense of the blackbird is not a part of a larger whole does not trivialize it.

Thirteen Ways Of Looking At A Blackbird - Poem by Wallace Stevens

The poem seems to be inspired by the haiku, a very short Japanese poetic form that captures intense imagery like a lightning flash. Stevens died in Hartford, Connecticut, on August 2, Stevens collected Asian artworks, and the influence of Asian traditions is obvious here.

In stanza one, the semblance of serenity and quietness of the woods belies the continuous flow of time. He spent most of his life working at insurance companies and lived in a run-of-the-mill Connecticut suburb. Though he had serious determination to become a successful lawyer, Stevens had several friends among the New York writers and painters in Greenwich Village, including the poets William Carlos WilliamsMarianne Mooreand E.

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird

See, for example, "bawds of euphony" and "barbaric glass. You could compare the effect of parts of the poem to a Zen riddle like, "What is the sound of one hand clapping?

That the blackbird is involved In what I know. Compared to our idea of rebellious, wild-eyed poets, Stevens was kind of like a blackbird himself: It is important to recognize that "Thirteen Ways" and the other aphoristic poems in early Stevens are not, strictly speaking, expressions of skepticism.

Neither style nor convention stanza or line lengths, rhythm, etc. Stanza IX creates a figure for the aphoristic quality of the poem as a whole, a series of circles containing a blackbird or blackbirds, each of which achieves a momentary but not therefore trivial meaning. Stevens seems to suggest in this poem that we cast away our narrow-minded bias to a better understanding of other human beings and a generous embracing of different perspectives and ideas.

Recall the first poetic speech as interjection Ah! In order to give this sense of the multiplicity of seeing, the poem must isolate each perspective while indicating that they are all directed toward the same general subject.

You want to be a Zen master without having to attract disciples or move into the mountains. Composing poems on his way to and from the office and in the evenings, Stevens continued to spend his days behind a desk at the office, and led a quiet, uneventful life. Leggett "Thirteen Ways" makes explicit what "Of the Surface of Things" indicates more indirectly--that a thoroughgoing perspectivism finds its ideal expression in aphorism.

Perceptual reality is complex, to say the least, and at its simplest, most mysterious Leonardo spoke of "the vanishing point" in his three-dimension rendering of the Annunciation, Gabriel, Mary, and a distantly dissolving river. We human beings have an instinct to chew over the past to regression.

Human beings have an intrinsic tendency to interpret an identical object or phenomenon in their own unique way according to their own unique experience and intuition. Excerpted from a longer analysis in Early Stevens: Inunder the pseudonym "Peter Parasol," he sent a group of poems under the title "Phases" to Harriet Monroe for a war poem competition for Poetry magazine.

Yet the "I" is greater than the "blackbird," which is only a part of what he knows. The poet works from within it to reach his "objective," "the truth not only of the poem but of poetry.

Stevens moved to Connecticut inhaving found employment at the Hartford Accident and Indemnity Co. The effect is to slow down time, heighten awareness, and open radical interpretive possibilities, where assumption blocks intuition, or arrogance shuts down understanding. Knopfpublished inexhibited the influence of both the English Romantics and the French symbolistsan inclination to aesthetic philosophy, and a wholly original style and sensibility:Wallace Stevens's Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird is a poem in which we can visualize a rainbow-like colorful images of a little blackbird along with as many different meanings.

13 Ways of Looking at a Blackbird: Analysis

(Report) Reply/5(5). I Among twenty snowy mountains, The only moving thing Was the eye of the blackbird. II I was of three minds, Like a tree In which there are three blackbirds. “Thirteen ways of looking at a blackbird” by Wallace Stevens is a poem about what it means to really know something.

In this poem, Stevens shows this connection by writing a first person poem about a poet’s observation. Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird - Among twenty snowy mountains, Among twenty snowy mountains, Wallace Stevens was born in Reading, Pennsylvania, on October 2, He attended Harvard University as an undergraduate from to The poem must resist the intelligence Almost successfully.

Illustration: A brune figure in. Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird study guide contains a biography of Wallace Stevens, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. About Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird. On "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird" Helen Vendler T he blackbird is the only element in nature which is aesthetically compatible with bleak light and bare limbs: he is, we may say, a certain kind of language, opposed to euphony, to those "noble accents and lucid inescapable rhythms" which Stevens used so memorably elsewhere in.

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An analysis of thirteen ways of looking at a blackbird a poem by wallace stevens
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