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Introduction & Overview of Daylights by Rosanna Warren

Rosanna Warren
This Study Guide consists of approximately 24 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Daylights.
This section contains 283 words
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Daylights Summary & Study Guide Description

Daylights Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains For Further Study on Daylights by Rosanna Warren.


"Daylights" was first published in the literary magazine Shenandoah and appears in Rosanna Warren's first full-length collection of poetry Each Leaf Shines Separate, published in 1984. It is a short poem—only twenty-eight lines in two free-verse stanzas—and, like other poems in the collection, was inspired by a famous poem. Many of the poems in the collection are also about paintings and other works of art. Using the second person "you," Warren details the response of the speaker to witnessing a New York City robbery. Full of colorful visual imagery and symbolism, the poem relates the speaker's hyper-awareness of her surroundings and her own mortality. Warren claims the poem speaks to French poet Stéphane Mallarmé's well-known poem "L'Azur," ("The Azure") and to the obsession of European romantics and symbolists with transcendental blue. Mallarmé's poem, published when he was twenty-four, isn't so much a description of the sky as it is of the sky's effects on the poet. These effects aren't feelings of beauty or love in any conventional sense but rather feelings of dread, death, and the impossibility of transcendence. The poet longs for what the blue sky promises while at the same time realizing that that promise can never be fulfilled. Warren uses blue and daylight as symbolic images of the violence and grit of urban America. She juxtaposes the symbolic promise of daylight with the harsh reality of city life. For Warren, art is always a mirror of human life and a way by which to measure it, to bring its meaning into relief. The poem has been reprinted in The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry and The Morrow Anthology of Younger American Poets.

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This section contains 283 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Daylights Study Guide
Daylights from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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