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We Live by What We See at Night Essay

Martín Espada
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Hill is the author of a poetry collection, has published widely in journals, and is an associate editor for a university communications department. In the following essay, she explains how such a brief, apparently simple poem can have far-reaching aspects and be much more complex than it may seem.

A poem that contains a dedication line—such as, for my wife, to John, or, in the case here, for my father—often connotes sentimentality, signaling that the work is very personal, if not autobiographical. Martín Espada's "We Live by What We See at Night" is both, and on the surface it is a thoughtful poem about a son's understanding and appreciation of his father's nostalgic feelings for his native country, Puerto Rico. Espada seems to offer this work as a loving tribute to keeping family unity and ethnic tradition alive in spite of the mental and...

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This section contains 1,642 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the We Live by What We See at Night Study Guide
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Poetry for Students
We Live by What We See at Night from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.