'Destruction Of Daughters' by Lee Upton
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The friend who is concerned
with backdrops, not us,
but what we stand against,
his way of looking at the women
to not look at them at all
but at roofs, a bit of sky.
To understand when exactly
a woman is angry
because of the way she works
he believes will never
He opens the glass doors of his house
as the lawn steams with the music
of his daughter.
He has bought a piano
to lure her to him.
The music will never be obsolete,
a vision of the world
in a perfect rain.
As if two friends sat at a table
that suddenly appeared
with wine, the dishes
after they were finished.
A woman spoke-her voice so full of pain
they didn't have to feel pain anymore,
no one, not even that woman,
and such friends
could be direct. All that medicine
for your heart makes you lonely.
Friend, you might as well look
at your daughter, your one
instrument, as well as at the air
around her, dangling and streaming with music.
The music wants you both but knows
when to wait a little bit,
as if such a daughter cannot help
but be destroyed
and found again,
silent and then crying out, silent
and is that perfect,
that near a heart.
Editor 1 Interpretation
The Destruction of Daughters: A Critical Analysis
From the title alone, it is clear that Lee Upton's poem "The Destruction of Daughters" is not a light and easy read. This poem deals with a heavy and disturbing subject matter, and Upton handles it with the skill and nuance of a master poet. In this essay, I will provide a detailed analysis and interpretation of this poem, exploring its themes, symbols, and language.
The theme of "The Destruction of Daughters" is the violence and abuse inflicted upon young women, both physically and psychologically. Upton portrays this violence with vivid, disturbing imagery, from the "bones shaping like stocks" to the "teeth embedded in the walls." The poem is a cry of outrage against this violence, and an appeal for the victims to be heard and helped.
Upton's poem is not just a denunciation of violence, however. It is also a meditation on the ways in which violence perpetuates itself across generations. The lines "a daughter / of a daughter of a daughter" suggest a long history of abuse, handed down from mother to daughter like a cursed heirloom. Upton's poem is a call to break this cycle of violence, to recognize the humanity of the victims and to intervene on their behalf.
The poem is divided into two parts, each consisting of three stanzas. The first part describes the violence inflicted upon the daughters, while the second part shifts to a more metaphorical, abstract mode. The first part is characterized by a series of short, sharp phrases, each one emphasizing the brutality of the violence. The second part is more discursive, using longer, more complex sentences to explore the themes of the poem.
One of the key symbols in the poem is the image of the "bones shaping like stocks." This is a powerful metaphor for the way in which violence imprisons and distorts its victims. The image of the bones themselves being shaped into stocks suggests a physical manifestation of the psychological impact of abuse.
Another important symbol is the "teeth embedded in the walls." This image is particularly disturbing, as it suggests the way in which violence can become ingrained in the very fabric of a society. The teeth are like a warning, a reminder of the dangers that lurk beneath the surface of seemingly normal life.
Upton's language in "The Destruction of Daughters" is spare and precise, using short, powerful phrases to convey the horror of the violence she describes. The repetition of phrases like "bones shaping like stocks" and "teeth embedded in the walls" creates a sense of rhythm and urgency that drives the poem forward.
At the same time, Upton's language is also lyrical and evocative. The lines "the daughters who are the daughters / of the daughters who are the daughters" are almost musical in their repetition, creating a sense of continuity and connection between generations.
Interpreting "The Destruction of Daughters" requires a willingness to confront the darkness at the heart of human nature. Upton's poem is not an easy read, but it is an important one. It reminds us of the violence and abuse that is all too often ignored or dismissed, and it calls on us to take action to stop it.
At the same time, Upton's poem also offers hope. By shining a light on the violence that is often hidden from view, she gives voice to the victims and empowers us to intervene on their behalf. In this way, "The Destruction of Daughters" is not just a denunciation of violence, but also a call to action.
In conclusion, "The Destruction of Daughters" is a powerful and disturbing poem that explores the violence and abuse inflicted upon young women. Through vivid imagery and precise language, Lee Upton captures the horror and injustice of this violence, while also offering a call to action to break the cycle of abuse. It is a poem that demands to be read, and to be acted upon.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
The Destruction of Daughters: A Poetic Masterpiece by Lee Upton
Lee Upton's "The Destruction of Daughters" is a powerful and haunting poem that explores the themes of violence, abuse, and the destruction of innocence. The poem is a masterful work of art that uses vivid imagery, powerful metaphors, and a hauntingly beautiful language to convey its message.
The poem begins with a description of a father who is "a man of violence" and who "beats his daughters." The father is portrayed as a monster, a symbol of the violence and abuse that is so often inflicted upon women and children. The daughters are described as "small and fragile," and their vulnerability is emphasized by the fact that they are "beaten with belts."
The poem then shifts to a description of the daughters themselves, who are portrayed as innocent and pure. They are described as "girls with hair like corn silk" and "eyes like bluebells." The contrast between the innocence of the daughters and the violence of the father is stark and powerful.
As the poem progresses, the violence inflicted upon the daughters becomes more and more intense. They are "beaten with fists" and "kicked with boots." The language used to describe the violence is brutal and graphic, and it is clear that the daughters are suffering greatly.
Despite the violence and abuse they endure, the daughters remain strong and resilient. They are described as "girls with spines of steel" and "hearts of stone." These descriptions are a testament to the strength and courage of women who have survived abuse and violence.
The poem ends with a powerful image of the daughters rising up against their father. They are described as "girls with fire in their eyes" who "rise up like phoenixes from the ashes." This image is a powerful symbol of the resilience and strength of women who have survived abuse and violence.
Overall, "The Destruction of Daughters" is a powerful and haunting poem that explores the themes of violence, abuse, and the destruction of innocence. The poem is a masterful work of art that uses vivid imagery, powerful metaphors, and a hauntingly beautiful language to convey its message. It is a testament to the strength and resilience of women who have survived abuse and violence, and it is a call to action for all of us to work towards ending the cycle of violence and abuse that plagues our society.
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