RR5 Poetry

In the poem, “she being Brand” by e.e Cummings, an extended metaphor is used. The poem appears to be about a a driver’s excitement to a new car. He describes the car as “she”, which could be man’s way to refer to automobiles. However, after understanding the poem,  it becomes clear that the poem is actually an extended metaphor for a man’s sexual experience with a woman, and the woman brand new, otherwise meaning she is a “virgin”. He uses the feeling of excitement of a brand new car in comparison with the sexual feeling towards a woman. One example that supports this is when he says ” it was the first ride and i believe i was happy to see how nice and acted right up to the last minute…” He also plays with form, composition and structure in which he wrote the poem in the use of the “awkward” punctuation This also plays a part in pushing  the true meaning to the metaphor.

Coming home, by Phillip Levine, he speaks about going home to his hometown “Detroit”, where you can tell the city is a riot when he say ” the charred faces, the eyes, boarded up…”. The auto factories dirt and smoke dominates the hellish landscape, ” we burn this city to the every day”.  He opens the poem with a very warm, calm mood with the use of the words “pouring fire”, “rouge sulfurs”, which shows that he sees beauty in this viscous city.

Both poems differ from one another since the meaning of the metaphors speak of two different things. E.E. Cummings compares the action to the use of brand new car to having a sexual relation to a woman, and Phillip Levine speaks about his city and the people, while driving in a car. In both poems, the author uses an extended metaphor to tell their story.


1 thought on “RR5 Poetry

  1. rmichals

    There is also the major difference that the e.e. cumin’s poem uses driving as a metaphor for sex while driving isn’t really the main metaphor in the Levine poem. It is the way he moves through the city and the metaphors are used to describe the city.


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