The Complete Poems, 1927-1979 - Chapter 3 Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 3 Summary

Questions of Travel begins with Bishop's Arrival at Santos in January 1952. Arrival at Santos is a piece that details the poet's first experience with Brazilian scenery and culture. The scenery is "impractically shaped" and the landscape is dotted with small churches, warehouses painted pink or blue, and statuesque palm trees. Bishop realizes that her previous knowledge of Brazil is quite limited and upon seeing the country's flag admits she never knew Brazil even had a flag. The next eighteen days would be spent venturing into the interior of Brazil where unknown adventures lay ahead. Bishop seems excited but unworried as long as there is an ample supply of bourbon and cigarettes.

Part of Bishop's journey leads the poet to ponder what Brazil must have been like in the early 16th century, a topic which she addresses in Brazil, January 1, 1502.

The title poem, Questions...

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