Elizabeth Bishop

Worcester, Massachusetts
Elizabeth Bishop
Worcester, Massachusetts
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The Imaginary Iceberg

Rating: 3.2
We'd rather have the iceberg than the ship,
although it meant the end of travel.
Although it stood stock-still like cloudy rock
and all the sea were moving marble.
We'd rather have the iceberg than the ship;
we'd rather own this breathing plain of snow
though the ship's sails were laid upon the sea
as the snow lies undissolved upon the water.
O solemn, floating field,
are you aware an iceberg takes repose
with you, and when it wakes may pasture on your snows?
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1234567minamesphillip 27 April 2020
who wrote this poem en
0 0 Reply
Jim Rainey 22 April 2016
There is brilliance, here. To rhyme travel with marble, is genius. To describe the sea as were and not was, to refer to the sea as plural is also genius. To describe an iceberg as a cloudy rock is also genius. To understate the preference as resulting in the end of travel is quizzacle. It was the end of over a hundred lives. The rest of the poem is oppressive. As with most of the Moderns since 1913, her poetry is more like dry prose. And her prose is sterile and dreadful and pompous.
4 2 Reply
sweetbutaphsyco 10 April 2019
So, are you saying you like this piece or are you saying that it is too " dreadful" for you? ? ? I'm just wondering.
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