poetry explication of skunk hour robert lowell

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poetry explication of skunk hour robert lowell

Category: Critical Thinking

Subcategory: Classic English Literature

Level: College

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Skunk Hour by Robert Lowell
The poem skunk Hour by Robert Lowell is an expression of the poet’s life, perception, and fears. The poet frames the piece through the symbolic representation of matriarchal images. The poem kicks off with a reflection on the coastal town. The poet shifts his focus to a rich elderly woman living in isolation. Sporadically, the writer introduces yet another focus on the decadence of the area and the depleted beauty of the place. Later the poem progresses in a rather bleak mood after the poet shifts focus to himself and his depressed feelings over the turnouts of events (Shmoop 1).
The entire poem is figurative in its presentation. Robert Lowell introduces “Nautilus Island’s heiress” as the first matriarchal image. In the first stanza, the poet uses the pronoun “her” to represent the hermit heiress who lives a luxurious life but in isolation. The protagonist is focused on materials and possession other than a meaningful relationship with other people. However, a critical analysis of the character would reflect the poet himself. Robert is scared that he might end up being an isolated character living in his old age with everything but no social life. The poet uses the clause “an island dweller facing an empty shore” (Kennedy & Dana, 860), as a matriarchal image representing a rich but lonely soul.
The poet chooses his words carefully depicting aristocratic status such as the selectman, heire…

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