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Ode to a Drum Summary
Yusef Komunyakaa

Everything you need to understand or teach Ode to a Drum by Yusef Komunyakaa.

  • Ode to a Drum Summary & Study Guide

Ode to a Drum Summary


Included in the first section of Yusef Komunyakaa's 1998 collection Thieves of Paradise, "Ode to a Drum" describes an African drum maker talking to the gazelle he has killed, while nailing the gazelle's hide to wood, and the music that results from the drum he creates. The poem was also included in the album Love Notes from the Mad House, Komunyakaa's musical collaboration with saxophonist John Tchicai.

"Ode to a Drum" represents many of the themes and subjects Komunyakaa has been known to address in his poetry, particularly the importance of music among African Americans and in African American history. With its short lines, jazz-influenced rhythms, and conversational diction, the poem is also written in a style representative of many of the poems in Komunyakaa's extensive oeuvre. Having grown up in the Deep South listening to blues and jazz artists such as Louis Armstrong and Ma Rainey and having been...

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Study Pack

The Ode to a Drum Study Pack contains about 23 pages of study material in 2 products, including:

Ode to a Drum Study Guide

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