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15 votes

What does "But... They went home" mean in Maya Angelou's "They Went Home"?

The speaker in the poem is a single woman who entertains married men. Comparing her position as "the other woman" to the men's domestic life, the speaker imagines that they probably praise ...
verbose's user avatar
  • 29.3k
12 votes

What does "But... They went home" mean in Maya Angelou's "They Went Home"?

The narrator of he poem seems to be a mistress to married men. Since it's unusual for a mistress to have multiple lovers at the same time, I think she's figuratively representing most mistresses, not ...
Barmar's user avatar
  • 221
6 votes

What does the line "You're all that I can call my own" mean in Maya Angelou's "Woman Work"?

"Woman Work" depicts women's unpaid labor as a form of slavery. Slaves by definition are dispossessed of the right to own anything. The poem's word choice and imagery are carefully deployed ...
verbose's user avatar
  • 29.3k
6 votes

What does "and bread loaf is not stone" mean in Maya Angelou's "Alone"?

While Maya Angelou did not call herself a Christian, believing that ‘calling yourself a Christian was referring to something that was complete, rather than a work in progress’ she certainly tried to ...
Spagirl's user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

What is the relationship between Angelou's poem "Caged bird" and book "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings"?

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was the first volume of Maya Angelou's autobigography, which eventually grew to seven volumes. Published in 1969, the title is taken from the third stanza of Paul ...
Clara Díaz Sanchez's user avatar
3 votes

What does "But... They went home" mean in Maya Angelou's "They Went Home"?

It is pointing out that whatever they say, they value something else greater than the sum of all of the qualities they praise. What that is, either isn’t known or isn’t acknowledged, but it must ...
jmoreno's user avatar
  • 201
3 votes

What does "where water is not thirsty" mean in Maya Angelou's "Alone"?

The poem contrasts material needs with emotional ones. In Maslow's hierarchy of needs, after basic needs such as food, water, and safety are met, the individual feels psychological needs like ...
verbose's user avatar
  • 29.3k
2 votes

What does "where water is not thirsty" mean in Maya Angelou's "Alone"?

If someone is thirsty, it means they need water. To drink, since that's what water is for us - something to drink. If water is thirsty, it means it needs water. For companionship, since it is already ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
  • 73.8k
2 votes

What does "rime of alien dreams" mean in Maya Angelou's "The Mothering Blackness"?

While most interpretations of this poem that one finds online describe the work as clearly relating to a mother and daughter, I find myself wondering if it relates to a different theme. The poem was ...
Spagirl's user avatar
  • 19.1k
2 votes

In Maya Angelou's "Caged Bird", what is the meaning of "his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream"?

The caged bird’s “shadow” is “screaming”. This is in vain, as shadows cannot scream. The most the bird’s shadow can do is extend beyond the cage. So, let’s look at the description of the bird’s cage: ...
bobble's user avatar
  • 9,854
2 votes

How is capitalization being used in Maya Angelou's "On the Pulse of Morning"?

The difference is based in grammar. The capitalised terms fall into two groups. There are the straightforward nouns, 'Rock' and 'River' etc preceded by an indefinite article, 'A' and which can be ...
Spagirl's user avatar
  • 19.1k
1 vote

How are colors being used in Maya Angelou's "The Mothering Blackness"?

The poem tells of sadness, loss, seeking maternal comfort. You are very observant to have noticed its masterly use of colors both in parallel and in contrast to each other. From the first stanza we ...
Eddie Kal's user avatar
  • 1,396
1 vote

What does "rime of alien dreams" mean in Maya Angelou's "The Mothering Blackness"?

There is a beautiful parallelism between the fourth lines of each stanza: white tears icicle gold plains of her face, rime of alien dreams befrosts her rich brown face, threats of northern winds die ...
Peter Shor's user avatar
  • 12.8k

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