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The Fish Essay

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This section contains 517 words
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In the following essay excerpt, Martin comments on contradiction and false images in "The Fish."

In "The Fish," for instance, Moore employs a typically intricate stanzaic pattern along with evocative, sensual language to create a scene as unfathomable as it initially seems specific. The first three sentences are clear enough. The fish "wade through [the] black jade" of a sea where "submerged shafts of the / sun . . . move themselves with spotlight swiftness." Nevertheless, even within those sentences, Moore has hinted at the broken vision to follow. She describes the movement of one of the "crow-blue mussel-shells" with curious indirection. The movement of the sand helps a viewer to infer rather than to observe directly the broken movement of the shells. We know only that "one keeps / adjusting the ash heaps, / opening and shutting itself like / an / injured fan." The rest of the poem develops this hint of submerged movement...

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This section contains 517 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Fish Study Guide
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Poetry for Students
The Fish from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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