Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Analysis of "Minnows 2" by Ray Amorosi

Poem found here: "Minnows 2" by Ray Amorosi


Situational awareness.  This is a term that I here often where I live, meaning, this poem, to me is about the surroundings and how the surroundings influence the speaker's wanderings.

"Whatever the cost I pay up at the minnow pools, / I don't know anything of the misery of these trapped fish / or the failure of the marsh I'm so hidden."  Regardless of how the scenery is, the speaker places himself in there to comment about what he knows or doesn't know -- well more likely doesn't know: doesn't know the cost, doesn't know misery, and doesn't know failure.  Apathy.

"Up above the island with its few houses facing / the ocean God walks with anyone there."  So the tone here is more informative than moving, but note that the mention of the speaker shows more of a separation since there is a lack of action with the acknowledgement, "I often / slosh through the low tide to a sister / unattached to causeways."  The question of "who is sister" or "what does the sister represent."  With the context of the poem the sense of apathy is added onto with the verb "slosh" as well.

"It's where deer mate then lead their young / by my house to fields, again up above me."  The tone is informative, but the twist in the language is, "again up above me" where there is a god and a sister but not the speaker.

"Pray for me."  This is situational awareness when the speaker knows the situation around him, but also knows that he's writing for a reader -- who?  Who knows and who cares?  "Like myself be lost / An amulet under your chest, a green sign of the first / rose you ever saw, the first shore."  Now the focus is on the "you" introduced in this section.  And everything is the first, even the prayer.

"Then I wash my horse, dogs, me behind the barn. / Only the narrow way leads home."  So there's a sense of cleansing, but it's mundane and informational which makes the last line, which seems a little cliche, into something a bit more cynical.  A sort of everyday cleanse.  A sort of narrow road that actually does lead home.  Nothing more.

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