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Introduction & Overview of True Night

This Study Guide consists of approximately 56 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of True Night.
This section contains 210 words
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True Night Summary & Study Guide Description

True Night 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 Further Reading on True Night by Gary Snyder.

"True Night" by Gary Snyder was first published in 1983 in Snyder's collection of poems, Axe Handles. The poem tells a story of how the sleeping poet is awakened by the sound of raccoons in his kitchen. He gets out of bed and angrily chases the raccoons away. Then, in the stillness of the night outside the house, he becomes more reflective, to the point where he seems to become one with nature. After a while, he reminds himself that he should not get carried away by such introspective meditations. He needs his sleep and has responsibilities to his family. So, he returns to bed to sleep and await the dawning of a new day.

"True Night" is often considered the finest poem in Axe Handles, which was the first volume of poetry Snyder published for nine years following his Pulitzer Prize-winning collection Turtle Island in 1974. The poem illustrates some of Snyder's typical concerns: his appreciation of the natural world and his interest in Zen Buddhism and altered states of mind. The poem can be read metaphorically as a journey in consciousness from the dualities of the outer world to a state of oneness, followed by a return to the world of duality with an increased appreciation of its possibilities.

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This section contains 210 words
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Poetry for Students
True Night from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.