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Blessing the Boats - From New Poems (2000), "grief" Summary & Analysis

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From New Poems (2000), "grief" Summary

This is a poem about pain and the grief that follows. In typical Clifton fashion, the poet links in biblical themes rendered in a vital, personal way. She imagines the brand-new world, theretofore without pain, so when God pulls a rib from Adam, it causes great pain not only to Adam but even to the grass beneath him, since until now nothing in the world has experienced grief, sorrow, pain or distress. One never thinks of it, but the poem reminds us that Adam suffered with this loss of rib and bled into the grass, moaning.

This experience of pain and grief reaches from that first day with Adam until now, not only "upright animals," that is, humans, in grief and pain, but also the plants suffering, which Clifton calls "the horizontal world...

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This section contains 770 words
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Buy the Blessing the Boats Study Guide
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