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Address to the Angels Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 35 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Address to the Angels.
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The most dominant theme in this poem is the human struggle between acceptance and denial of a higher power, between the longing to believe in something and the individual willpower to go it alone. The simple fact of the title implies that the speaker at least allows for the possibility of unworldly beings or else there would be no "angels" to "address." However, the irony and doubt that permeate this poem are unmistakable, and one cannot be sure, even in the end, which side of the struggle the speaker winds up on.

The first indication that the speaker denies the existence of angels is at the end of the first stanza and beginning of the second. The former closes with the description of a creation myth, one involving a giant fish, a flat earth, and a big black gulf for sinners, a fanciful tale...

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This section contains 729 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Address to the Angels Study Guide
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Poetry for Students
Address to the Angels from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.