Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Analysis of "The Pattern" by Robert Creeley

Original poem reprinted online here:  "The Pattern" by Robert Creeley
Originally read: September 3, 2013
More information about the Poet:  Robert Creeley


A shift in language changes language.  Simple enough, right?  I come away from this poem with more questions than actual analysis.  This poem plays with the idea behind the meaning behind the change on a linguistic level.  "As soon as / I speak, I / speaks" Even thought the only things that shifts is the singular to plural, does the essential meaning shift?

Then with the next sentence, the focus is on "it" -- the ambiguous pronoun where

     wants to
     be free but
     impassive lies

     in the direction
     of its
     words.

and here, I believe that the "it" refers to the actual term "it."  It is free of gender, age, want, desire and is a generic noun to reference anything.  However, the speaker turns the meaning of it back around with the word "impassive."  The language is stationary regardless of meaning.  However, through meaning the reader brings his or her interpretation of the ambiguous pronoun so when a statement like this appears, "Let / x equal x, x / also equals x"  what changes -- the language a bit, but not the meaning.  X will always equal x.

But how far can that concept be pushed? "I / speak to / hear myself / speak?"  This is not interpretation as to say purpose, but this line definitely straddles the line of interpretation and purpose.

And the last two sentences focuses on the purpose/interpretation line:

     [...] I
   
     had not thought
     that some-
     thing had such

     undone.  It
     was an idea
     of mine.

So from the basic "the pattern" of the actual as actual, the speaker then thinks about how the patter operates.  Remember, having it undone doesn't mean the pattern is broken -- rather examined down to the core.

What is more core than the actual is just more actual?  How about when the poem reuses the word "it" that now the "it" has purpose behind it through the construction of the poem.  "It" as a key deconstructive tool.

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